It’s hard to believe it that 2016 is drawing to an end. Whew, what a year – am I right? This year, we’ve have an awful lot to be thankful for. It has been a great year of growth for us… for our community… our city… our team.. and as a company.
In January, I was thrilled to join the 10 amazing individuals making Grand Circus a vibrant and impactful company. It’s just 11 short months later, and our team has nearly doubled. This means we have double the power to make tech more accessible while supporting our communities and diversifying the industry. Every day, I am excited to work alongside these folks, hang out with our community and work together toward our common goals.
Celebrate the Good Times!
To cap off our year, we’re excited to host and sponsor an array of events. Let’s celebrate and share memories about all of the student success we’ve been a part of, youth we’ve introduced to technology and new friends we’ve made in Grand Rapids. Let’s celebrate the growth, success and lessons.
Our holiday party is December 2, and we’d love to have you at the festivities. Let’s have a drink, exchange some gifts and hear each other’s stories while we play games, karaoke and decorate cookies! (Seriously, there will be DIY cookies. You can’t lose with a night of edible crafting.) We can talk about our twinsie moments, the hard times and the time we dressed like a circus. RSVPs are free and open to everyone.
Help Us Support The Children’s Center
It really is hard to believe the year is nearly over, but we still have so much to accomplish! One of the things I’m most excited about is our Donation Drive for The Children’s Center.
From now until December 5, we’re accepting donations to support this awesome organization’s holiday shop ––– a free shopping experience that allows parents to shop for toys that they’ll then wrap and put under the tree. The group, which was founded in 1929, helps “children and families shape their own future” by providing resources, education and support.
Interested in helping? We’re accepting donations of new, unwrapped gifts (under $25), new-in-package underwear and socks, hygiene products, gift wrapping supplies, Meijer or Walmart Gift Cards, and $25 Kroger Cards. Simply stop by our downtown Detroit location (1570 Woodward Ave.), and we’d happily add it to our collection.
Hour of Code
Before 2017, we have another big goal we want to accomplish. We’re working to introduce nearly 150 youth to programming languages throughout this year’s Hour of Code. Hour of Code occurs during Computer Education Week, December 5 – 11. Computer Science Education Week is a global movement to promote computer education at a young age, supporting the growth of engaging programming exercises.
Just 10% of American schools have courses in Computer Science. And yet, opportunities for web developers are far surpassing many other industries. By 2024, employment of programmers will increase by 27% whereas the job market as a whole will only increase by 6.5%. Let’s engage our children in computer education!
Join us at the Michigan Science Center on December 10. We’re hosting four one-hour blocks throughout the day to support kids’ exploration of the Hour of Code platform. Grab a computer and let’s have some coding fun. (The event is open to ages 6 years+. While the Hour of Code event is free, attendees are responsible for General Admission pricing of the Michigan Science Center). RSVP.
Introducing adults to opportunities in technology is just as important as our youth initiatives. We are now accepting
applications for our free pre-apprenticeship program. Residents of Detroit who are interested in a career in tech are encouraged to apply. Grand Circus provides Java training and are then introduced to job and mentorship opportunities.
We’ll be wrapping up applications for this program on December 15, with the training portion of the pre-apprenticeship happening in January of next year. Interested in tech? Know someone who is? Learn more about the program and help us spread the word!
In addition to all of these great things, our calendar is full of workshops, community events and meetups. We’re also accepting applications for our coding bootcamps, and are excited to announce that our January cohorts are already half full. Thinking about joining a bootcamp? Now is the time! We will be increasing tuition prices next year; lock in 2016 pricing if you apply to any 2017 bootcamp by December 30.
This year, we have been a part of so many amazing things and we have so much to be thankful for. We are proud of what we’ve accomplished, and we’re excited to champion our next adventures together. This year has been fantastic, and next year is sure to be even better. Thank you all for being a part of it!