Grant Boosts Computer Science and Cybersecurity

$20K Grant Boosts Computer Science and Cybersecurity Curriculum at Seminole Ridge High
Posted on 06/04/2021
Seminole Ridge Community High School

Seminole Ridge Community High School received a $20,000 grant from Lockheed Martin to fund the Project Lead the Way (PLTW) program at the school. PLTW is a nonprofit organization and leading curriculum provider in the fields of engineering, computer science, and biomedical sciences.

The funds will be used for teacher professional development, enhancing instruction in two existing PLTW courses, Computer Science Essentials and Cybersecurity. In addition, the grant will help cover the cost of implementing an innovative cybersecurity curriculum that supports diversity, equity, and inclusion. The grant sets up a pathway for traditionally under-represented students to build toward more successful economic futures and post-secondary success.

The funds will also be used to support student participation in computer science and cybersecurity programs as well as competitions that encourage students to pursue careers in those areas.

“This donation gives students a phenomenal opportunity to gain industry certifications in the areas of cybersecurity and computer science, and a chance to learn about this evolving technology field,” said Rebecca Vadakara, a Mathematics, Information Technology and Computer Science teacher at the school.

“Through the implementation of the PLTW Computer Science courses, Seminole Ridge is able to demonstrate our commitment to student learning that is relevant to the professional environment that we are preparing our students for,” she said.

The School District has collaborated with PLTW for more than two decades. Seminole Ridge High was able to leverage this exciting opportunity since the school has a captive audience of students who have shown a great deal of interest in information technology and computer science courses.

With the growing demand for computer science and cybersecurity skills, the school’s four-year Applied Information Technology academy blends information technology with computer science and cybersecurity, and the PLTW program will provide a solid learning environment for students in those important disciplines.

“There is a major gap in available skilled workforce in this field,” Vadakara said. “Introducing cybersecurity concepts for students who may have never been exposed to this curriculum helps them get a better sense of personal security, safeguards them against cyber threats, and also prepares them for a possible career in the cyber fields.”

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