Saturday, September 28, 2013

HSCC Testimonial: Nikki Hoffler (BDPA Charlotte, 2008-2012)

Nikki Hoffler
Nikki Hoffler comes from BDPA royalty. Her brother, Christopher, is a multi-year participant in the National BDPA High School Computer Competition (HSCC) championships. Her father, John, has served as president of local BDPA chapters in both St. Louis and Greenville. In fact, her father will become a local BDPA president for a record-setting third time in January 2013 when he takes on the role as BDPA Charlotte chapter president.

However, Nikki stands alone with her own personal BDPA legacy ... she has been a 5-time participant in the National BDPA HSCC championships (2008-2012) on teams trained by BDPA Charlotte chapter.

Nikki is entering into her sophomore year at Mount Holyoke College.  She won a 2013 Oracle Scholarship for BDPA Students earlier this summer.  We've asked Nikki to share remembrances of her BDPA experiences.

"A few years ago my HSCC team went to a ropes course to do team building exercises. I especially remember the 'Leap of Faith' where each team member would climb to the top of a telephone pole and jump off, knowing that their safety rope was held by the rest of the team. It was amazing to see how our team dynamics transferred seamlessly from coding on a computer to physical trust exercises. We had a great time.

Every year I look forward to doing the Cha Cha Slide with everyone: my teammates, my friendly competitors, and our lovely volunteer chaperones. Once the competition is over and the banquet is done, everyone starts to relax a little. But it still takes a little coaxing to get all the students to dance. Luckily, we have chaperones like Melvin Rogers, Markus Beamer, and Jamesetta James, who are brave enough to take the floor. It amazes the new students every time!

First of all, it was my experience in HSCC and BDPA that made me such a strong candidate for college applications. I applied to many "reach schools" and got into nine out of the ten universities to which I applied, four of which awarded me additional merit-based scholarships.
When I came to Mount Holyoke College, I knew I wanted to be a Computer Science (CS) major and although I consider myself to be an introvert, networking at BDPA conferences gave me the skills to take advantage of the resources I have at college. This year I will be both a writing mentor and a teaching assistant for a CS freshman seminar that is based upon the research I did for the department this summer.

Our hope is that Nikki will consider becoming part of the BDPA IT Showcase in 2014. For now, we wish her nothing but success as she enters her freshman year in college. At the same time, we encourage you to Support BDPA Charlotte HSCC Training with a secure online donation!

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