Milford High celebrates Computer Science Week

MILFORD – This week, Milford High School and Applied Technology Center celebrated “Computer Science Week” through engaging activities and by having guest speakers visit.

Friday, two guests spoke to students from Tammy Andrew’s computer science classes about their experiences and how they ended up in their jobs.

Director of Information Privacy and Security at Commonwealth Care Alliance Andy Seale was the first to speak. He presented on Cybersecurity. Seale showed students how easy it was to get information stolen or sold.

“I can buy your Social Security number for 25 cents, your credit card numbers for 50 cents and your medical records for $50,” Seale told the students. He offered many solutions to the students on how to avoid scams, such as never clicking on questionable links and always checking the email domain.

“If it doesn’t look right, it probably isn’t right,” Seale told students. Seale said at his company, he will send out fake emails to his employees to see if they will fall for the trap. If they fall for it twice, he meets with them to discuss why they shouldn’t be clicking on unfamiliar links and how they should proceed in the future.

Seale said his job is fulfilling.

“I like what I do because I like keeping people safe,” Seale said. “It is one of those things where you can make a direct impact on people. It makes me feel better doing this because I can go home knowing I did the right thing.”

Seale said he was happy to present to the students to give them a chance to see what jobs are out there.

“I think it’s just great because it gives the students ideas of what they want to do. So often, you are in school and you have no idea what you want to do with your life. You may say, ‘This sounds cool,’ and you end up changing your major three time. It was the same thing for me. Your path is always changing,” Seale said.

After Seale’s presentation, Angelos Dardagiannopoulos, who is a design director with SkyMap Games, spoke.

As with Seale, his career path was not straightforward. He told students he worked so many different jobs aside from his current position that he couldn’t keep track.

“I remember being in their chairs literally and figuratively and wondering, well I want to get into games, but I know nothing about it,” Dardagiannopoulos said. He graduated from Milford High School in 2009.

He said this is why it is good to have experts come in and speak with the students.

“It’s good to get people in the industry to come in and give the students their perspective so that students can then go home and research what it is they actually want to do,” he said.

After both presentations, Jennifer DiMaria, the Career Development Specialist at Milford High School, addressed the students and urged them to continue to sign up for computer science classes. In the computer science program, students in grades 10-12 can earn college credits through the Community Colleges of New Hampshire Running Start Program.

Meanwhile, other students throughout the school have gotten their own taste of computer science through Hour of Code, which allowed students to hop online and learn about coding with the help of fellow computer science students.

Junior Samantha Boisvert was one student offering assistance to the students who weren’t familiar with coding. She said almost 500 students participated during the week. The school has about 800 students.

Junior Caroline Boudreau, who is also in the Computer Science Career and Technical Education program, said weeks such as these benefit students.

“I didn’t know anything about this program or Hour of Code before I got to eighth grade. Now that students are being exposed to this, they can see the different opportunities that they have in front of them,” she said.

Grace Pecci can be reached at 594-1243, or at gpecci@nashuatelegraph.com.