EXTERNING IN THE AGE OF AGILITY
In early October, BI Solutions Manager Justin Bailey presented at the Age of Agility conference about Western States’ experience participating in the Idaho STEM Action Center and the Idaho Workforce Development Council’s newly developed externship program.
“In short, the experience was a fulfilling way for our team to connect and support our community,” he said.
The summer program enables teachers and advisors to expand their skill set so that they can prepare their students for careers after graduation. Along with Western States, organizations like KBOI Channel 2 News, the University of Idaho, St. Alphonsus, the Idaho National Laboratory and Micron hosted educators from all over the Treasure Valley.
Maggie Chapman, a STEM educator from the Caldwell School District, participated in the program at Western States over the summer.
“I spent much of my time developing apps for the company to use to help streamline internal work processes,” Chapman said, “My ability to develop a useful project was heavily dependent on collaboration with my coworkers, research on Google, a little creativity, and lots of trial and error.”
Chapman, who teaches high school math and computer science, said her experience with Western States gave her the chance to practice the creative and technical skills she teaches in her classroom throughout the school year.
“It is an amazing experience for my students to see how computer science is being used in the Treasure Valley, and how they can start to pursue a career in the field,” she said.