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Press Release  
Release Date: Friday, May 24, 2013 4:00 PM
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Media Contact:
Rachel Mann
Communications Specialist
NSF Computer Education for the 21st Century Program awards $1M Grant to Howard’s Computer Science Program
A. Nicki Washington, Ph.D.

WASHINGTON (November 16, 2012) - A. Nicki Washington, Ph.D., principal investigator; Legand Burge, Ph.D., co-principal investigator; and Kenneth Anderson, Ph.D., co-principal investigator, were awarded a $1 million National Science Foundation (NSF) grant titled, “The Partnership for Early Engagement in Computer Science.” The grant, awarded under NSF’s Computer Education for the 21st Century (CE21) Program, will provide computer science resources to students in Washington DC Public Schools (DCPS) and high schools.

An “Exploring Computer Science” course will be offered at five DCPS high schools, beginning with the 2013-2014 academic year. Additional high schools will be incrementally added throughout the three-year program. The course will educate students through problem solving, web design, programming, human-computer interaction, and mobile application development. DCPS teachers will be trained to teach the course and will also receive professional and instructional coaching from Washington throughout the year.

“Our goal is that, by 2016, this course will be mandatory for all DCPS high school students, regardless of whether they choose to pursue a CS major or not. In addition, this project can serve as a blueprint for bringing computer science to every student in public schools across the country,” said Washington

The goals of the CE21 program:

• Increase the number and diversity of K-14 students and teachers who develop and practice computational competencies in a variety of contexts.

• Increase the number and diversity of early postsecondary students who are engaged and have the background in computing necessary to successfully pursue degrees in computing-related and computationally-intensive fields of study.


Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private, research university that is comprised of 13 schools and colleges. Students pursue studies in more than 120 areas leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. Since 1998, the University has produced two Rhodes Scholars, two Truman Scholars, a Marshall Scholar, 30 Fulbright Scholars and 11 Pickering Fellows. Howard also produces more on campus African-American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, call 202-238-2330, or visit the University's Web site at

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