Introductory CS Course Projects: It’s All About Inclusion

Announcing the Winners of the First CMD-IT Undergraduate Student Competition

We are proud to announce our winners of the first CMD-IT Introductory CS Course Projects: It’s All About Inclusion. The objective of this competition is to have students develop descriptions of computing projects that they find exciting, inspiring, and appealing to students from underrepresented groups (African-Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans, Pacific Islanders, and People with Disabilities). We received some excellent submissions. The reviewers included Susan Gerhart (Research Outlet and Integration), Annuska Perkins (Microsoft), Ron Eglash (RPI), Bryant York (Portland State University), Richard Ladner (University of Washington), and Valerie Taylor (TAMU). The awards were presented at the Richard Tapia Celebration in Computing Conference 2011. The competition was made possible with funding from Google, AccessComputing and R&M Global Advisors.

First Place, $3,000 prize: Mr. Andrew Atkinson

Project: Music Mixer

The Music Mixer project introduces students to modularization and classes through music. The project involves students writing modules to play live music from real-time user-input. The modules would involve instruments or beats that are chosen by the student groups. For example a student group could create a module focus on the drum or dynamic keyboard. The instructor would provide the framework that allows easy integration of the different modules. The framework can include different displays that may involve visual display, touch display or chord display.

Music is an important part of any culture and it is something that students enjoy. The focus on music and programming allows students to see that both areas involve creativity and collaboration. For this project, each group can be unique in their design and the who class will benefit from the full range of design results.

Andrew Atkinson is a sophomore at Oregon State University Honors College. He majors in Computer Science and Theatre Arts, with a minor in business. Andrew also enjoys studying music, psychology, and art. He plays clarinet, saxophone, and piano; composes music, and sings in his school’s men’s choir. Andrew enjoys coding, but hopes to find a career designing or managing projects and using his wide skill set to be a versatile and creative leader.

Second Place, $1,500 prize: Mr. Peter Rogers

Project: Endocrinology Service Oriented Architecture for Improving Diabetes Management

Peter Rogers was 10 years old when diagnosed with diabetes. He says that, “One of the problems that many diabetics face when dealing with their diabetes is the relationship that they have with their endocrinologist. There is no way for them to exchange information in real-time.” To remedy the problem, Peter proposes a project that involves a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) application that allows patient and endocrinologist to exchange information in real-time. Further, the patient would not have to be available in-person for the consultation. Peter is very interested in this project as it is recognized that African Americans are twice as likely to develop diabetes during their lifetime.

The concepts utilized in the project would be the design of simple user interfaces and the introduction of SOA. The students would be asked to develop the user interface to be used for entry of patient information to go to the endocrinologist. This interface can have a cultural component as specified by the students. The instructor would provide the SOA framework for easy integration of different user interfaces.

Peter Rogers was born and raised in Greenville, South Carolina. He graduated from Greenville Technical College in 2009 with an Associate’s Degree in Computer Technology/Information Management & Systems. Peter attends the University of South Carolina Upstate with plans to graduate with his Bachelor’s degree in Information Management & Systems (Healthcare) in May of 2011.

This competition is funded in part by support from AccessComputing and R&M Global Advisors.