The program delivers hands-on technology education to students and provides in-school IT career and awareness workshops
MIDLAND: Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) , a leading IT services, consulting, and business solutions organization, today announced the completion of its annual goIT summer camp in Midland, Michigan.
The two-day camp, which is now in its second year in the Greater Midland region, aims to inspire local middle school students to pursue a career and education in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields. The program concluded with a robotics competition hosted at Jefferson Middle School in Midland, Michigan.
TCS' goIT program is a STEM education initiative that is offered to students free of charge. The program delivers hands-on technology education to students and provides in-school IT career and awareness workshops. Led by TCS employees, the program offers students the opportunity to engage with advanced technology in an enjoyable, relaxed environment. The culmination of the program, held on August 9th, is a robotics competition in which student teams compete under the guidance of TCS mentors to overcome a series of challenges and obstacles using programming skills and technologies. This year, challenges included a robotic chariot race and castle storming.
"We are very excited to host our second goIT summer camp in the Midland, Michigan area," said Surya Kant, President, North America, UK and Europe, TCS. "As an IT services company, we understand the critical importance of inspiring students to pursue a career in STEM and we are invested in our mission to address the growing skills gap in technology fields by reaching out to the youths in our community. Through programs such as goIT, we have the potential to inspire students to pursue a career that they never thought possible."
By 2018, research shows that STEM occupations are projected to grow by 17%, with 71% of STEM jobs focused on computing including cloud, data, app and security. This contrasts sharply with the mere 17% of high school graduates who are proficient and interested in pursuing STEM careers. The goIT program, which began in Cincinnati five years ago, is designed to address and correct this gap. In addition to the previous goIT markets of Cincinnati, Columbus, OH and Midland, MI; this year, TCS is expanding the camp to reach students in Bentonville, AR; Edison, NJ; Minneapolis, MN; San Antonio, TX; Santa Clara, CA; Atlanta, GA; Chicago, IL; and Toronto, Canada. With these additions, goIT will be a nationwide program covering 10 US locations as well as the greater Toronto region in Canada.
"We are grateful for the opportunity to host TCS' second annual goIT summer camp at Jefferson Middle School," said Midland Superintendent Michael Sharrow. "We recognize and understand the need for students to receive exposure to STEM education at an early age and we believe that the goIT program encourages our students to continue their studies in STEM related fields. By creating an environment conducive to creativity and innovation, TCS is helping to build a generation of informed, intelligent individuals."
"There is an urgent need for our secondary and postsecondary educational facilities and community partners to coordinate programs that will promote STEM awareness and education," said Richard Keenan, Midland County Commissioner, District 4. "As a community partner, TCS has made valuable contributions to our community's effort to advance STEM awareness amongst our students. We are proud to be associated with a program like goIT."
"In just two short years the Midland goIT summer program has already created an excitement around science and technology in our local schools," said Jeff Lauer, Career Development Administrator at Midland Public Schools. "Following the 2012 goIT camp, students at Jefferson Middle School, with the support of their teacher, took the initiative and founded their own Robotics Club. Over the course of the school year, TCS worked closely with the students, parents and teacher to help make that a reality."
The goIT program is just one of several ambitious initiatives that TCS is actively involved in to improve the accessibility and quality of STEM education across the United States. For example, at the 2013 Clinton Global Initiative in Chicago, Illinois, TCS announced that it had joined US2020 as a Founding Leadership Partner. US2020 is a national STEM Education initiative that aims to engage one million science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) professionals in mentorship opportunities by the year 2020. TCS will be the lead partner in developing US2020's web-based matching technology that will help place STEM volunteers into high impact mentoring opportunities with top non-profits working across different grades, settings, and delivery models.