Josh Dunlop, Teeside University, MA Concept Art for Game & Animation

Code Club : Start your career from “Scratch” as a volunteer.

From banana-powered computing to enhancing your CV with volunteering experience, Aardvark Swift’s James Grant talks to us about Code Club.


 

As a third year Marketing student, I quite frankly don’t know my Python from my Java, my stack from my algorithm. Squeezing a banana to make a computer work? No, I don’t understand how this works either, but it’s pretty mesmerizing!

Unsurprisingly, school children think so too… So how can Code Club also help you with landing your own job in video games?

Code Club

In an almost naming and shaming type of exercise, each day my LinkedIn profile likes to remind me that “1 in 5 employers hired someone because of their volunteer work”, almost as if I’m being told to get up and do something productive and worthwhile.  If you’re an avid coder and a tech enthusiast, this isn’t likely going to be the motivation you need to start a Code Club while you’re at university, however, if you’re a coding simpleton like myself, the lure of increased employability prospects may just do the trick, but don’t be surprised when you catch the coding bug.

Code Clubs are weekly coding sessions for children between the ages of 9 and 11, the sessions can take place in schools, community centres, and libraries, as the club leader the choice is yours. Don’t worry, as your Code Club adventure begins, you won’t get thrown in at the deep end, in fact, there is no deep end.

[pullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Code Club volunteers will obtain an array of skills & experience to bolster their CV’s.[/pullquote]

From day 1 to the end of your 12 week project, you and your club members will use simple step by step instructions, growing in complexity each week in order to create more weird and wonderful creations as your own and the children’s coding skills expand. If you’re already familiar with coding principles, Code Club volunteering will offer you the chance to really hone your existing skills and knowledge of code, combined with the chance to enhance your CV with practical experience prized by employers, from teamwork & leadership skills to innovation, creativity and problem solving.

For just 1 hour a week Code Club volunteers will obtain an array of skills and experience to bolster their CV’s and you’ll actually be able to prove you did something substantial outside of those vigorous 12 hours of lectures and seminars (joke!). Aside from the obvious CV enhancements, in your 12 weeks as a Code Club volunteer you’ll undoubtedly have a great sense of enjoyment from both your personal development and that of the children you work with. With the computing-based industry expected to have grown by 39% by 2030, you’ll be helping to equip the next generation with a foundation of skills they can carry into further education and employment. Who knows, you could even be the inspiration that sparks off an interest in a budding coder who goes on to become an awesome games developer/rocket scientist/nuclear physicist….or they may just invent the next Facebook?

So now you can tick volunteering off your profile, what’s next LinkedIn? “Adding a language could increase your employability prospects” Does HTML5 count?

 

Email me at james@aswift.com for more details regarding Code Club and introductions to programme leaders near you.

Code ClubClick here to download Code Club’s volunteering overview

James Grant | 4 December 2015

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