Community Engaged Scholars in CS

Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of San Francisco

Summer Head Start

Scholars will participate in a one week on-campus head start program prior to the start of their first year. Specifically, scholars will move into their dormitories one week early and participate in day-long sessions with faculty and guest lecturers introducing campus and departmental resources, technical foundations, and the resources available from the technical community in the SF Bay area. Students will also participate in a weekend field trip to familiarize them with the San Francisco area.

Fall 2019

The website for the Fall 2019 summer CS head start program is located at:

Below are the general materials used to introduce and wrapup the program:

  • Introduction Slides: These slides introduced the program and schedule. It also included introductions of faculty and student participants.

  • Wrapup Slides: These slides wrapped up the program. It included various resources, how to continue and stay engaged, and an opportunity to provide feedback.

Below are the materials from the “CS Major and Advising” session. These are specific to our CS major:

  • CS Advising Slides: These slides gave an overview of the core and CS major requirements at the University of San Francisco. Afterwards, students and faculty broken into small groups for advising. Each group had 3 or 4 students and one CS faculty member.

  • CS Major Advising Worksheet: This is the worksheet students were asked to fill in during the small group advising session. The worksheet was more of a guide on what to discuss—some groups deviated to answer the questions students had at the time.

  • CS Major Prerequisites: This is an overview of the CS major requirements and their prerequisites at the University of San Francisco. It was given to students as a reference.

  • CS Major Requirements: This is a checklist of CS major requirements at the University of San Francisco. It was given to students as a reference.

Below are the materials from the “Careers in CS” session. Some of the material is specific to the SF Bay area:

  • Careers in CS Slides: These slides introduced students to computer science, gave a brief history, and different possible career paths for CS majors.

  • Computer and Information Technology Occupations: This is a web resource given to students on different occupations within the “Computer and Information Technology” area and their median pay.

  • Career One Stop: This is a web resource given to students that has salary ranges for different regions, including the SF Bay area.

Below are the materials from the “Using Unix” session. Some of the material is specific to the SF Bay area:

  • Using Unix Topic Sheet: This document lists some of the topics (or specific Unix commands) to cover during the session.

  • Digital Scavenger Hunt Structure, Files: This documents and includes the files for the digital scavenger hunt. Students were asked to use what they learned about Unix commands to discover a hidden poem on our CS lab computers. There was an issue with the clue that caused some issues with the exercise.

Below are the materials from the “Python Programming” sessions. Some of the material is specific to the SF Bay area:

  • Python Programming Plan: This is the loose plan used to run the Python Programming sessions. The actual exercises were adjusted individually for students based on their backgrounds.

  • Python Programming Starter Code: This is the starter Python code given to students to work on during the Python programming sessions.

Below are the materials from the “CS Unplugged” session. We did not create these materials; they are from the “CS Unplugged” website:

  • Parity Magic: This links to the CS Unplugged materials on the “Parity Magic” unit plan.

  • Parity Magic Interactive: This links to an interactive version of the “Parity Magic” unit plan that was used in class.

Below are the materials from the “Faculty Scavenger Hunt” session. This session was held on the same day as the college-wide start-of-semester meeting, which all faculty are expected to attend. This meant most faculty were on campus and able to participate in the scavenger hunt:

  • Faculty Scavenger Hunt Instructions: These are the slides with the student instructions for the faculty scavenger hunt.

  • Faculty Scavenger Hunt: This is a Word document using an Avery template for business cards. On the first set of cards is the name of a professor, the desired way students should refer to that professor (e.g. by first name “Sophie” or by title “Professor Engle”), office location, and space for the student to fill in information. On the second set of cards is a blank space to fill in the name of a professor, followed by a short “tidbit” specific to a professor. An example tidbit might be “has a stuffed corgi plush in the office” or “once was a professional musician”.

    Cards were then printed and students were randomly assigned into groups. Each group received a full set of faculty cards and a full set of tidbit cards. Both sets of cards were shuffled first. Students were then instructed to find a professor in their office. During their visit, students had to introduce themselves and provide each faculty member a tidbit about themselves. Then the students had to ask why that professor chose USF and write that reason on the front of the faculty card. They had to guess which tidbit card belong to that professor, and get one additional tidbit from that professor to write on the back of the faculty card.

    Afterwards, students all met again in the same room and shared what they learned about the faculty that participated in the scavenger hunt. There were no explicit prizes for being the first group to return.

Below are the materials from the ice breaker sessions:

  • Shared Interest Ice Breaker: Students drew a card to determine their group. Each group was instructed to find all of the shared interests within that group (such as movies, video games, sports, books, music, food, hobbies) and write those interests on the whiteboard. After 10 minutes, students returned to their seats and as a class we found any interests that were shared across all of the groups. The student instructions

  • Two Truths One Lie Ice Breaker: Students drew a card to determine their group. Each student had to think of two truths and one lie about themselves, and go around their group guessing which was the lie. Afterwards, some students volunteered to share their two truths and a lie with the entire class.

  • Advisor Ice Breaker Cards Template, Instructions: This is a Word document using an Avery template for business cards. On each business card is a name of a student’s academic success coach or CS major advisor. Cards were printed out and then randomly distributed to each student. Students had to swap cards with each other until they had cards for their own academic success coach and CS advisor.

Various other website resources were given to students, which can be found on the detailed daily schedule on the Fall 2019 CS head start website.

Not included are materials provided in the workshops led by on-campus offices such as our Learning Center and Health Promotion Services. These are materials we did not create ourselves for this program.

Fall 2020

Curriculum developed as part of this summer head start program will be posted here when this program concludes.