CyberLaunch Academy announces new financial assistance program for children underrepresented in STEM disciplines
Fredericton, Jan. 13, 2017: The CyberLaunch Academy is announcing a new initiative “Sponsor a child in IT training.” In partnership with Bulletproof Solutions Inc., PQA Testing, and individual philanthropists the CyberLaunch Academy will provide stipends to students from socio-economic groups that are underrepresented in science and technology disciplines. During the pilot stage of the program in Spring 2017 the academy will provide training in coding and website design to six aboriginal, low income and recently immigrated boys and girls from elementary and middle schools in Fredericton, NB.
CyberLaunch Academy is independent source of high quality engaging extracurricular activities in computer science for children and adults. It was created in 2016 to assist the province in promoting science and technology among school students. Its strategy is designed to increase interest in science and technology among elementary, middle and high school-aged students by teaching them basic computer science skills and introducing them to new information technologies. Through regular classes, workshops and community outreach, the Academy uses early socialization into information technology approach as a tool to encourage youth to seek further technology training at New Brunswick’s colleges and universities.
“From the very beginning we were looking for opportunities to bring computer science training to children who rarely pursue science and technology training. Our CyberGirls initiative targets girls trying to encourage them to seek training in computer science and to reduce gender imbalance in this field. “Sponsor a child in IT training” is the next step in creating opportunities for those children who face socio-economic barriers in studying science and technology. Since its official opening we at Academia decided to reserve few spots in our classes for children from low income and aboriginal families and families who recently immigrated to the province. Some of our friends in business community thought that this was a great idea. They suggested that we should convert our private initiative into community wide effort and offered stipends for several of our students.” Dr. Natalia Stakhanova, CyberLaunch Academy’s President and New Brunswick Innovation Research Chair in Cybersecurity.
"Sponsor a child in IT training” is intended as a community wide initiative. Its goal is to encourage partners from government, business, nongovernmental and faith organizations as well as individuals to take more proactive role in New Brunswick’s economic development. Early computer science training of children is believed to be an essential first step in preparing the next generation New Brunswikers for local economy. As the demand for high skilled workers worldwide will continue to grow, these people will become the key human resource for local businesses and will create synergetic momentum for economic growth. The CyberLaunch Academy sees “Sponsor a child in IT training” as a program that that promotes more equitable access to computer science training to all families in New Brunswick.
“It’s long overdue to have a computer science school like CyberLaunch Academy here in New Brunswick. I was fascinated that the top UNB computer scientists had enough passion to bring their knowledge and experience to children who otherwise have little opportunities to study information technology. We wanted to be part of the “Sponsor a child in IT” program, because we at Bulletproof believe that participating in community wide efforts like this can really make New Brunswick a better place from top to bottom." Steven Burns, the CEO of Bulletproof Solutions Inc.
For more information: Oleg Stakhanov, Executive Director, CyberLaunch Academy, 506-440-0759