RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Lenovo and the National Academy Foundation (NAF) today announced 10 NAF Academies have been selected to participate in the Lenovo Scholar Network, a program designed to enable the next generation of developers and entrepreneurs through a rich application development curriculum and creation of apps. As part of the program, students will participate in a project-based competition that tasks them with designing and developing a mobile app and a business plan for taking the app to market.
Since officially launching the Lenovo Scholar Network in July, NAF has received a record number of applications from NAF academies across the United States eager to participate in the program. The academies selected to the Lenovo Scholar Network include:
- Carencro High School Academy of Information Technology – Lafayette, LA
- Cimarron-Memorial High School Academy of Information Technology -- Las Vegas, NV
- Friendship Collegiate Academy of Information Technology – Washington, DC
- Hialeah Gardens Senior High School Academy of Information Technology -- Hialeah, FL
- Orosi High School Academy of Engineering and Green Technology – Orosi, CA
- Pathways Academy of Technology & Design -- Hartford, CT
- Phillip O. Berry Academy of Technology -- Charlotte, NC
- Springbrook High School Academy of Information Technology -- Silver Spring, MD
- Timber Creek High School Academy of Information Technology – Orlando, FL
- Washington High School of IT – Milwaukee, WI
Through the network, students will be exposed to a well-rounded curriculum of mobile app development and entrepreneurship courses that will provide them with the knowledge, resources and practical experience to ensure college and career success.
The Lenovo Scholar Network is designed to encourage greater interest among underserved high school students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects while providing them with high-tech skills to succeed in the 21st century. During an initial pilot in 2012, students from five NAF Information Technology Academies across the United States participated in the program and successfully created and launched apps, some of which are available to the public on Google Play. With the continued support of this program, Lenovo and NAF are able to bring this experience to even more students across the country.
Academies will use Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) App Inventor, a web-based tool for creating Android apps, to build and test their apps on Lenovo devices. MIT App Inventor is a joint project of the MIT Media Lab’s Center for Mobile Learning and MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. NAF and MIT are working together to provide technical assistance and to develop support materials for teachers using MIT App Inventor.
Lenovo will provide each of the 10 participating schools with ThinkPad laptops and YOGA tablets to aid the students in development, coding and testing of their mobile app as well as to help teachers and mentors with the implementation of the curriculum.
“With NAF we provide 21st-century learning and entrepreneurial leadership development that will help create the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs through the Lenovo Scholar Network,” said Jay Parker, president, Lenovo North America. “The program course work and practical experience provides the students with key technical skills and also the critical thinking, problem solving and collaboration skills that will enable them to emerge as the change leaders of tomorrow.”
"The Lenovo Scholar Network provides our students with a tremendous opportunity to demonstrate their talent, creativity and business acumen in a real-world setting," said Raul Vargas from Pathways Academy of Technology & Design. "This type of exposure early on plays a critical role in building their proficiency and confidence as they look to transition into college or the professional world."
“Our collaboration with companies like Lenovo supports our goal of graduating more students college and career ready, particularly in the growing STEM industries,” said JD Hoye, president, NAF. “The Lenovo Scholar Network is a prime example of how businesses and education can work together to provide students with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in today’s fast-paced world.”
“The MIT App Inventor team is excited to collaborate with NAF and Lenovo on this innovative project,” said Josh Sheldon, director of strategic programs, MIT App Inventor. “Not only will this project bring entrepreneurial and app building skills to NAF students, but the materials we develop together will become available more widely and serve countless additional youth worldwide as they too work with MIT App Inventor.”
Lenovo (SEHK:0992) (Pink Sheets:LNVGY) is a US$39 billion personal technology company, the largest PC company in the world, serving customers in more than 160 countries. Dedicated to building exceptionally engineered PCs and mobile internet devices, Lenovo’s business is built on product innovation, a highly-efficient global supply chain and strong strategic execution. Formed by Lenovo Group’s acquisition of the former IBM Personal Computing Division, the company develops, manufactures and markets reliable, high-quality, secure and easy-to-use technology products and services. Its product lines include legendary Think-branded commercial PCs and Idea-branded consumer PCs, as well as servers, workstations, and a family of mobile internet devices, including tablets and smartphones. As a global Fortune 500 company, Lenovo has major research centers in Yamato, Japan; Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, China; Sao Paulo, Brazil, and Raleigh, North Carolina. For more information see www.lenovo.com.
About The National Academy Foundation
The National Academy Foundation (NAF) is an acclaimed network of career-themed academies that open doors for underserved high school students to viable careers. For more than 30 years, NAF has refined a proven model that provides young people access to industry-specific curricula, work-based learning experiences, and relationships with business professionals. NAF academies focus on one of five career themes: finance, hospitality & tourism, information technology, engineering, and health sciences. Nearly 5,000 business professionals volunteer in classrooms, act as mentors, engage NAF students in paid internships, and serve on local advisory boards. During the 2013-14 school year 70,000 students attended 565 NAF academies across 38 states, D.C. and the U.S. Virgin Islands. In 2013, NAF academies reported 96% of seniors graduated.