Hello, World! Meet the Coding Club  

Sophia Lopez, Features Editor

   At the start of the school year, Junior Eduardo Steinmann Petrasso had a goal in mind. Already known as quite the intellectual for success in his rigorous schedule of college level classes, and active commitment to the Robotics club as team 50801E’s programmer, he decided to up the stakes. Bringing a new club to life at Pembroke Pines Charter isn’t easy. Being the president is harder. Learn all about the founding of Coding Club, their current projects, and future aspirations. 

 

  • What motivated you to start Coding Club? 

“I’ve been motivated with starting Coding club since 8th grade, but it was still a hazy idea back then. 8th grade was my first year that I was exposed to robotics, and I was the programmer for my team, and I really wanted to share the experience of coding with the rest of the school, I just didn’t know how back then. Last year was when I really fleshed out what role I wanted the club to [have] and came up with a ton of ideas for it. My dream career is also to be a software developer, so that was also a motivator in me starting the club. But I would say my biggest motivation is this: I wanted the club to exist so that anybody who wanted to learn how to code and practice programming would have the opportunity to do so.

   I know the school offers a variety of computer science-related courses like web development and AP Computer Science Principles, but I also know that a lot of times people may be interested in coding but for whatever reason, they may not be able to take the class. I think it’s a shame that all those people aren’t given the chance to try coding out, because I feel that once you’re exposed to programming, it really is a whole new world and it’s so much fun if you keep practicing and learning. That’s why we’re trying to orient the club to be a hub really for programmers of all levels and why we’ve been giving weekly lessons to anybody who wants to attend.”

I think it’s a shame that all those people aren’t given the chance to try coding out, because I feel that once you’re exposed to programming, it really is a whole new world and it’s so much fun if you keep practicing and learning.”

— Eduardo Steinmann Petrasso


  • Who is the sponsor?

   “My sponsor is Mrs. Ciafre. She used to work in database management, and I really wanted a teacher who I knew and who had some experience with programming. Anybody who has had Mrs.Ciafre will agree with me that she is an amazing teacher. From day one, she was super eager to help us out, she’s a great sponsor, and I am extremely grateful for that.”

 

  • What activities are you integrating in your club that you could provide insight on? 

    “So, we’ve recently gotten approval to be able to install IDE’s (integrated development environments), which are essentially software editors, on a set of school laptops that we can use, and I want to thank Mr. Bayer and the IT administrator, Mr. Alvarez, for that. Now that we will be able to install IDE’s, I’m extremely excited to announce that we will be starting our Competitions practice. You’re probably wondering what coding competitions look like, and basically, students, in teams of 3, are given a set of around 10 programming problems and around 4 hours to solve them. It’s really more about honing your problem solving skills and then applying programming to implement your solution, which is a key part of being a programmer. With the installation of IDE’s I’m also pleased to announce that we’ll be able to start developing projects and applications so that programmers of any skill level, whether it be beginners or advanced, are able to practice their skills.

   Speaking of which, I recently approached Alan Schwartz, the president of the school’s Chess Club about a collaboration project where a coding club develops a chess AI and chess club plays against it; you can expect a lot of fun coming from these two clubs real soon. Finally, with IDE’s it’s also really just gonna make the coding lessons we’ve been giving run a lot smoother since our members will be able to practice coding with the same real world tools professional programmers use. We accept everybody and you don’t have to have any experience, we WILL teach you guys.”