As computer science is a growing, competitive field, it is important that you pursue extracurriculars regarding computer science to see if it is really your niche or not. Participating in school clubs, summer programs, competitions, or taking AP classes are great ways to gain experience and knowledge within the computer science field. Additionally, taking part in these activities can show college admissions officers that you are passionate about this field. If you are interested in computer science and unsure of what to participate in, here are some great options to consider.
Joining school clubs is a great way to gain knowledge about the computer science field. They can introduce you to popular concepts and technical skills that are necessary. These clubs can also give you the opportunity to connect with individuals that have the same passion as you. Here are a few clubs you can join if your school has one, and if not, consider starting one!
Web Design Club
Computer Science Club
National Technical Honor Society
Summer programs are a great way to gain experience and develop skills within the computer science field. Unfortunately, most summer programs are expensive. Here are some summer programs that you can look into:
Location: Online (CSSI: Extension is located at participating schools)
Eligibility: Intend to enroll in a four-year college, demonstrate interest and motivation for computer science, and will participate in the program.
Length: 2 weeks
Location: Stanford, CA (Online for 2021)
Eligibility: Rising 9th, 10th-grade students
Length: 10 weeks
Eligibility: Rising 10th, 11th, and 12th-grade students
Length: 3 weeks
Eligibility: Rising sophomore-seniors
This program is a great hands-on and job-learning experience as you work on technology projects. The program has been paused due to the pandemic.
Taking computer science-related courses in high school or by yourself is a great way to learn key concepts of the field. If your school offers them, take the following AP classes to learn more about computer science. If not, you can try to self-study for them, but keep in mind that some AP classes are easier to self-study for than others. You can also take a Harvard computer science course through EdX for free!
AP Computer Science Principles
AP Computer Science A
Discrete Mathematics for Computer Science
Competitions are a great way to use your computer science knowledge and compete with other like-minded individuals! Through competitions, you can learn from others and get inspiration. If you place in a high spot, it can show college admissions that you are passionate and an outstanding computer science student. Here are a few competitions that you can look into:
If you are looking to strengthen your experience and knowledge in computer science, participating in one of these extracurriculars will definitely help! As computer science is becoming more competitive, participating in related extracurriculars will give you a great perspective of the field. These extracurriculars are great options that you should look into if you are interested in pursuing computer science.
“ABOUT.” Summer Engineering Academy, esap.seas.upenn.edu/about/financial-information/.
“Best Summer Programs for Computer Science.” College Transitions, 24 May 2020, www.collegetransitions.com/dataverse/summer-programs-computer-science.
“Computer Science Summer Institute (CSSI): Online – Build Your Future with Google.” Google, Google, buildyourfuture.withgoogle.com/programs/computer-science-summer-institute/.
“High School Program.” High School Program | Microsoft Careers, careers.microsoft.com/students/us/en/ushighschoolprogram.
Mathur, Sadhvi. “Extracurriculars to Consider If You Plan to Study Computer Science.” CollegeVine, 12 Mar. 2020, blog.collegevine.com/extracurriculars-to-consider-if-you-plan-to-study-computer-science/.
Sundquist, Kate. “Extracurriculars For Aspiring Computer Science Majors.” CollegeVine, 5 Mar. 2020, blog.collegevine.com/extracurriculars-for-aspiring-computer-science-majors/.
“What We Do.” NTHS, 7 July 2020, nths.org/what-we-do/.