ITA & Partners Host Sesame Street Workshop

This summer, the Information Technology Academy (ITA) had the fortune to host the Sesame Street Workshop, a nationally renowned workshop designed to help “teach to empower” students through the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines. ITA’s Technology Services Manager AJ Daughtry Krill, E-line Media’s Research and Program Manager Allison Mishkin, and Madison Public Library’s Teen Services Librarian Jesse Vieau collaborated to bring the program to 11th graders in ITA-Madison.

Mishkin taught students about the five elements of game design and had the students assign the elements to simple games like Rock, Paper, Scissors before testing and creating their own games. The workshop concluded with an introduction to the free online game design software, Gamestar Mechanics.

Beyond her technical expertise, Mishkin also shared her story of how she came to work in the computer science and programming field, crediting her passion for the “Princess Diaries” and running an online fan site as a young adult. Students had the opportunity to ask questions about experiences and challenges Mishkin has had in her career. Mishkin impressed upon students, “I believe you have to make things you want to see in the world.”

This workshop culminated a two-week, summer technology laboratory class on Computer Systems and Service in which students learned how to create simple software programs using Scratch.