Approximately two years ago, Coursepower, a minor in applied computing, was implemented at four Columbia- area universities and colleges. Since that time the following milestones have been reached:
In just two years, nine South Carolina colleges have approved the minor/certificate and now have it available to students. There is now a group of diverse, geographically dispersed academic institutions with available curriculum. With this much access, and the pipeline of students resulting, South Carolina will benefit in a huge way.
More than 5,000 SC college students have taken at least one foundational course in the program.
While this doesn’t mean 5,000 students will graduate with the minor/certificate in 1-2 years it does mean more students are taking technology classes and at least getting that initial exposure that is so important. We’re seeing the number of students outright declaring the minor (see below) as well as the number of students choosing a technology major increase sharply.
The number of students outright declaring the minor from year one (2013) to year two (2014) has increased by 82%.
This is no doubt due to the minimum, and in some cases first-ever, exposure the 5,000 students mentioned above are getting to technology and we are beginning to see the results. The end result will be more students, graduates and job candidates with minimum technology skills, which bodes well for SC businesses.
Eight additional colleges are scheduled to approve and make available CoursePower in year three.
Many schools around the state are now approaching us and asking how they can join the project. Schools are seeing the success and now want to make the program available themselves. If eight more join in the upcoming year, the total will climb to 17!
Fifty-five companies have now joined the CoursePower initiative and are participating.
From reviewing curriculum to ensuring the right skills are being produced, to creating internships, to going into classrooms and emphasizing the benefits of technology education, the business sector is actively engaged and supporting CoursePower because they know when the program is successful, they’re successful because they have access to talented and well prepared graduates. This pipeline will allow existing businesses to expand and new businesses to choose South Carolina as home or expand operations here.
Let’s keep the momentum going!
If you’re an educational institution that might benefit from offering the minor, or a business interested in reviewing curriculum or creating internships, we want you. If you’re a middle or high school student considering a college, we want to talk to you. And if you’re a current college student that might benefit from CoursePower, we want to talk to you too.