Iowa computer science programs will step into the spotlight next week to celebrate the 2023 Computer Science Education Week.

Held Dec. 4-10, this annual worldwide event recognizes the impact of computer science on our daily lives and celebrates the successes and advancement of computer science education. In Iowa, this year’s Computer Science Education Week will focus on creativity in artificial intelligence, otherwise known as AI.

“Computer Science Education Week is a great week to build and renew excitement about computer science,” said Mauree Haage from the Iowa Governor’s STEM Council at the Iowa Department of Education. “This is a time where schools can highlight the new and exciting ways they are incorporating computer science into the classroom while also incorporating career opportunities here in Iowa within the computer science field. Computer Science Education Week is just one week during the year for schools to call attention to the importance of computer science in our future.”

Several events across the state are planned for school districts and community partnerships during the week. School districts looking to add a Computer Science Education Week celebration event are invited to access the list of resources detailing different available activities.

Registration is now open for these notable Computer Science Education Week events:

  • A virtual panel for secondary students will cover careers in AI on Dec. 4 from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.
  • An additional virtual panel for secondary students will discuss different pathways to AI careers on Dec. 5 from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.
  • Virtual Family AI Coding Night will be held on Dec. 7 from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Students and families will have opportunities to engage in and enjoy different AI hands-on activities.
  • A special STEM event featuring the Nutcracker Ballet will be offered on Dec. 8 at 12:30 p.m. This 45-minute event is targeted to elementary youth but can be enjoyed by all ages.

“We have an amazing line-up of fun, interactive events for school districts and families to discover the different ways that computer science impacts us every day,” said Justin Lewis, computer science consultant at the Department. “Iowa is one of the top states in the nation for computer science education, and activities like these during Computer Science Education Week help to develop new skills, build excitement and keep us moving forward as a state.”

A proclamation signing by Gov. Kim Reynolds is also planned to help celebrate Computer Science Education Week.

Computer science week

Iowa’s Computer Science Education Week is a collaborative effort between public and private entities invested in computer science. Along with the Department and Iowa Governor’s STEM Council, the planning team includes Alliant Energy, Bio::Neos, CSTA Iowa, Iowa’s Area Education Agencies, Iowa Business Council, Iowa Technology and Education Connection, Iowa Workforce Development, Google, Kirkwood Workplace Learning Connection, NewBoCo K-12 Education, Microsoft and the Technology Association of Iowa.

For more information on Computer Science Education Week in Iowa, visit the Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council’s webpage.