For the first time ever, TxT took the Summer Coding Leadership Academy “LILs” and Coaches to the Arrowhead Pine Rose Cabins for four days at camp. Camping in the beautiful San Bernardino Mountains was a brand new experience for nearly everyone and, with its ponds, streams and meadows, a big change from life in South Central Los Angeles.
Throughout their time in the great outdoors, LILs solved challenging puzzles that required teamwork, planning, and critical thinking. Team-building activities took them out of their comfort zone and inspired them to persevere, even when challenges that took more than a day. Coaches encouraged the LILs to stay mentally strong and were very impressed by their determination to never, ever give up. On the final night at camp, LILs enjoyed roasting marshmallows and trying to outsmart each other while playing board games.
“The camp was fun and took all my energy. I definitely looked at my teammates a different way because, during camp, I got to know everyone’s name and a little bit about them,” said LIL Jaylen Santos. “The coaches want you to succeed and be better. They take ideas pretty seriously, even if they fail.”
“Thanks to the activities at camp, I have a better understanding of the complexities of simple things as well as the simplicity of complex things,” said LIL Alex Hanson. “I had to get used to something new and the games left my mind blown a lot of the time. Each activity showed me something I didn't notice before. I really enjoyed being able to see the beauty in nature and see everyone smile.”
Intern John Dominguez added, “It was exciting to see how camp redefined the way kids saw each other and work as a group. This is the first time I ever saw LIL’s form such a strong team and chemistry in the first week. I’m looking forward to seeing what great products they come up with together by the end of summer.”
Quicker than ever, this year’s Summer Coding Leadership Academy formed a strong bond and made memories that will last a lifetime. They are ready to create amazing products and change their communities. A special shout out goes to Councilmen Curren Price and Marqueece Harris-Dawson for supporting coding in their districts and expanding camping opportunities for inner-city children.