Monday, January 4, 2010

HSCC Testimonial: Karole Johnson (2005-2006)

Originally Posted: 1/3/2008

We are pleased to share another testimonial from a student participant in our youth education programs provided for K-12 students all over the nation. This young sister comes to us from Richmond, VA.

"My name is Karole Johnson and I am currently a freshman at High Point University in High Point, NC. I was a 2006 graduate of The Steward School in Richmond, VA. I have participated in the BDPA High School Computer Competition (HSCC) Training program since I was in the seventh grade. My first conference experience was in Chicago. Even though I was only 12 years old, I remember having so much fun and meeting people who are still my friends to this day.

Since then, I have traveled to Orlando, Philadelphia, Dallas, Detroit, and Los Angeles. I participated in the Youth Conference for four years, and I learned a lot in the seminars. My favorite part of any BDPA youth conference had to be the ‘Student Outing’ to one of the local businesses (behind the scenes at Disney) or colleges (University of Texas at Dallas). This was my favorite part of the conference because I got to see how life was in other parts of the country.

Starting in my junior year, 2005, I participated on the Richmond HSCC Team. I had fun participating in the oral and written competitions. The programming competition was where I grew. Not only did I grow in my programming skills, but I also grew in my time-management skills. Those eight hours are very challenging. You have to use your brain and your memory to do the problem correctly.

Throughout training and competition, one skill that I learned that will bring me success in the future is paying attention to details. Coding is a skill that has to be done perfectly or you will not have the outcome you desire. One missing letter or bracket will upset your whole program.

The most important skill that I learned is time-management. Eight hours is a whole lot shorter than it sounds. Being Project-Manager in 2006 taught me that I really had to pay attention to time, what we were working on, and what needed to be done. The stress got to me a couple of times, but I learned to work through it and keep going until they said we were out of time. I also learned a lot about being on a team in a challenging situation. I learned to keep up a positive outlook no matter what might be going wrong.

Also in 2006, I received a scholarship award from Bank of America that has greatly benefited me in my college career.

The most memorable thing from my years participating with HSCC is all of the friends that I have made. I have met so many unforgettable people not only from Richmond, but from across the country. I have friends in Milwaukee, Chicago, Dayton, Cincinnati, Philadelphia, and even Canada that I would never have gotten the chance to meet if it were not for BDPA. All in all, BDPA has given me lasting memories, lasting friends, and lasting skills that I will continue to use throughout my life.

My most memorable experience was in LA. First of all, we placed 6th in the competition this past year. As Project Manager, I was very happy for myself and for my team. I learned more about myself and my team, and we formed a friendship that is going to last for a long time. To celebrate, our coordinator took us around LA and to Santa Monica Beach. Everybody has a dream of going to California, seeing the Hollywood sign, going down Rodeo Drive, and living like a star. My dream came true. As we rode into Beverly Hills, I was all smiles. Going down Rodeo Drive made me realize ‘I want to be able to shop here one day.’ The whole LA experience was amazing."

This young sister has been engaged in BDPA youth education programs since she was 12-years old! She has been able to travel all over the country as a result of her ties to BDPA. Isn't it time that you made a donation to BDPA Education & Technology Foundation so that other young people can participate in 2008!

In the meantime, are their any Richmond chapter members here that want to share some insights on Karole with us? Heck, someone tell Karole to come over and leave her online signature by using the POST A COMMENT feature!

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