Gov. Christie has signed legislation sponsored by Assembly Republican John DiMaio to better prepare high school students in the demanding field of computer science.
“Computer scientists are in high demand, but only a fraction of U.S. high schools offer advanced training on the subject,” said DiMaio. “If you think for a moment about some of the people who have remade our world, people like Bill Gates or Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg. They learned computer science before they graduated from high school.”
DiMaio’s bill (A-2597/S-2161) encourages students to take computer science courses in high school, and allows districts to offer an Advanced placement computer science course to fulfill part of the math or science credit requirements for graduation.
“The rigorous Advanced Placement computer science coursework includes some of the most strenuous mathematical calculations and scientific challenges of any high school course,” said DiMaio. “It just makes sense to count it toward math or science requirements for graduation,” DiMaio added.
An estimated 120,000 new jobs requiring a bachelor’s degree in computer science is expected in the next year alone, and nearly 3.7 million jobs in STEM fields—science, technology, engineering, and math.
“We need to better prepare the next generation of problem-solvers and technology pioneers. These valuable skills will open doors to educational and career opportunities in areas where demand is expected to exponentially grow in the future,” DiMaio said.