May 24, 2024


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Salish Kootenai College to launch computer science certificate program | Local News

Kya-Rae Arthur 4 (copy)

Kya-Rae Arthur studies in the library in January 2020 at Salish Kootenai College.

Tom Bauer

Salish Kootenai College in Pablo will launch a one-year certificate in computer programming after being selected to participate in the American Indian College Fund’s Tribal College and University Computer Science Initiative.

The college was one of four higher education institutions named in the four-year initiative, which focuses on professional development as well as enhancing computer science program opportunities for American Indian students.

“Computer science is foundational to so many aspects of life today. Everything from information technology to entertainment to building a picture of the well-being of our communities is tied to our ability to use computer science to our advantage,” wrote Cheryl Crazy Bull, president and CEO of the American Indian College Fund, in a news release.

American Indian and Alaska Native people are historically underrepresented in computer science fields, which the American Indian College Fund seeks to change with this initiative, the release said.

Salish Kootenai College will create a program called Increasing Computer Science Capacity to offer courses through the one-year certificate program. Opportunities for dual enrollment for reservation high school students will also be available through the initiative.

One additional full-time computer science faculty member will be hired to support courses in the one-year certificate program and dual enrollment. The new staff member will also support other faculty with professional development opportunities.