The National Computer Science School (NCSS) is a 10-day summer school that brings together Year 11 and 12 students from all over Australia for an intensive course of computer programming and website development.
NCSS is organised by the Australian Computing Academy at the University of Sydney and is completely residential, with all students staying with NCSS staff in full-board accommodation at the Women’s College on campus.
“When I arrived at NCSS, all of the students met and were assigned into one of two streams: the Embedded stream which was focused on electronics and software, and the Webstream which was focused on web-based platforms,” Donovan said.
“We were then split into groups within our stream. I was placed in Group 6 with five tutors. Each day of the camp we attended lectures and labs learning how to code in micro-python and worked together on small challenges and one major group project.
“We were taken off the University of Sydney campus for site visits to Atlassian, WiseTech Global, and Optiver. We also took part in a mock job interview with one of the summer school sponsors, which in my case was with the Commonwealth Bank.
“Most nights there were challenges and social activities such as a trivia night, scavenger hunt, tower challenge, the cryptography challenge, the all-nighter and the NCSS bakeoff, as well as a formal dinner.”
Donovan said the camp was a rewarding experience that he will remember for years to come.