Oracle Academy Newsletter

March 2017

In This Issue:



New Offerings for Higher Education and K-12 Members

We are pleased to announce two new benefits for our members: a new Application Development Foundations curriculum for higher education and the availability of our popular Workshop in a Box translated into several language options.

Oracle Application Express – Application Development Foundations is a full semester course for advanced secondary (high) school and 2- and 4-year college students who already possess SQL and/or PL/SQL skills and want to learn to develop database driven web applications. Students will learn the techniques and tools required to design, develop, and deploy beautiful, responsive, database-driven web applications using Oracle Application Express. Remember if your students don’t have SQL or PL/SQL skills yet, Oracle Academy also offers courses to help them learn those skills. Full details of our Database Curriculum offerings, including the new Application Development Foundations course, can be found on our Full Course Curriculum page.

For our K-12 members, we are delighted to offer new translations for our popular Getting Started with Java Using Alice and Creating Java Programs with Greenfoot Workshops in a Box. These workshops provide everything you need to deliver introductory computer science workshops and are now available in the following languages:

  Arabic Brazilian Portuguese Chinese English French Japanese Romanian Spanish
Getting Started with Java Using Alice Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Creating Java Programs with Greenfoot Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Full details of our Workshop in a Box offerings including the new language options can be found on our Workshop in a Box page.
 



It’s Never Too Late to Study Computer Science!

Have you ever wondered why you didn’t start something sooner?

“It is never too late to start learning something new,” says Brigham Young University Idaho student, Dylan Pratt.

Dylan Pratt grew up in a rural community in southeastern Idaho and attended a high school where computer science courses were not offered. So, with no exposure to computing, he started his college career intending to become a pharmacist. Little did he expect a freshman-year Java programming class would change his future forever. As he began to learn Java, he quickly realized his natural curiosity about computer programming could become a career. Now, he says he enjoys studying software engineering because “I get to be creative and solve problems. I use my knowledge of programming languages to solve 21st century business problems.”

Over the course of his undergraduate career, Dylan has become very aware of the high demand across industries for employees with computing skills. As he enters his final semesters of college, he says he feels a sense of security knowing he’s graduating with a skill set that is so needed in so many industries. His advice to other students? Consider studying computer science and developing coding skills to be able to seriously consider capitalizing on the opportunities this kind of a background can provide.

Coming full circle as he graduates, Dylan chose to create a text-based game using Java for his senior project. He tells us he chose Java because it’s a language widely used by professionals, and he’s able to use a set of well-defined rules to make the game meet specific goals. “Even though the tools available for programmers are challenging,” he says, “once mastered, they really enable developers to solve unique and challenging problems in ways other languages can’t.”

Brigham Young University Idaho is a member of Oracle Academy. The software and other learning resources available with an Institutional membership help the university enhance learning objectives and to help students build the skills and knowledge they need to be successful in any industry. Dylan is just one of many students who can say he’s benefited from the partnership between Oracle Academy and Brigham Young University Idaho.

For more information about the resources available for Higher Education Institutions, visit our Membership Benefits page.
 



Oracle Academy Awarded Best Partner of the Year

For the second consecutive year, Oracle Academy was proud to receive the Best Partner of the Year from ICT Academy of Kerala (ICTAK) during their Annual Summit. This prestigious award is a testament to our focus on advancing computer science education globally to drive knowledge, innovation, skills development and diversity in technology fields. It is a great honor to receive this award from ICTAK as ICTAK is chartered to help graduates hone their employability skills in a competitive marketplace.

In 2016, Oracle Academy and ICTAK entered into a formal partnership agreement to introduce Oracle Academy curriculum to 150 institutions, 6000 students, and 500 faculty across the state of Kerala over a three-year period. As part of this initiative, Oracle Academy resources including software, academic curriculum, hosted technology, educator training, support, and certification resources are being made available to students and faculty.

Commenting on the event, ICTAK CEO Mr. Santhosh Karup said, “We have been blessed to have Oracle Academy as a partner, who walked with us on our mission to reach out to graduates on employability skills, sometimes ahead of us to guide and sometimes supported us as a knowledge partner.”
 



Momentum in the EU Continues with Partnerships in Belgium and the Netherlands

Oracle Academy is pleased to announce its partnership with Netherlands Academy Support Center (NASC) and the Belgian IT Academy Support Center (BiASC) to advance computer science education within 140 local schools over three years beginning in February 2017. This partnership was made possible through the collaboration of Oracle Academy; Oracle country leaders in Netherlands and Belgium, René van Stiphout and Jan Ronsse; and Gerk van der Wal, CEO NASC and Yvan Rooseleer, CEO BiASC. Ninety schools in the Netherlands and 50 schools in Belgium will be supported by NASC, BiASC, and Oracle Academy to help deliver better IT education and knowledge at vocational schools in the Netherlands and Belgium.

“At Oracle Academy, we are thrilled to inspire and engage students from the Netherlands and Belgium and all different parts of the world in computer science,” said Jane Richardson, Oracle Academy senior director, EMEA. “Earlier this year, Oracle made a significant commitment to the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition, a multi-stakeholder partnership to bolster computer science (CS) and coding proficiency at all levels within Europe’s workforce EU. The partnership announcement with BiASC and NASC continues our momentum to advance digital education and increase diversity in technology fields in Europe.”

“Digitally skilled professionals are critical to the Netherlands's competitiveness and capacity for innovation,” said Mr. van Stiphout. “Over the last ten years, we’ve seen the demand in Belgium for students with computer science and coding skills grow by year by year,” said Mr. Ronsse.

Oracle Academy’s efforts to bring computer science into classrooms through this collaboration can help strengthen educators’ computing skills and knowledge to allow them to take that learning into the classroom and engage students as they prepare to enter the digital economy.
 


Coders in Action

Databases for Developers Bootcamp

To help higher ed students learn about databases and SQL, Oracle Academy and the Oracle Dev Gym team are launching a free 12-week boot camp designed just for beginning database students: Databases for Developers. Consisting of videos and quizzes, Databases for Developers complements the Oracle Academy database curriculum and gives students a chance to “work out” – testing their knowledge, getting instant feedback and earning a certificate when they complete the workout series.

Databases for Developers will start on Monday, April 3, running on the Oracle Dev Gym. To take part, register at the Databases for Developers registration page.

For updates, follow the Databases for Developers Facebook page and the Oracle Academy Facebook page!
 


Oracle Data Visualization Contest

Oracle United Kingdom’s Business Development organization is sponsoring a Data Visualization Contest for students across Europe—the Oracle Data Viz contest. Students will learn how to use Oracle’s Data Visualization tool and can win a prize for the most innovative project. Oracle Academy members have free access to Oracle’s Data Visualization tool, creating an opportunity to explore the tool outside of the contest and get a leg up.

If you are a business student and/or an Oracle Academy member, we encourage you to accept this challenge today – the deadline is fast approaching! Develop the most innovative way to use this Oracle tool to discover great and unexpected insights. The Business Development team has the website, data sets, and prizes ready for you.

Projects will be judged on:

  1. Best insight
  2. Best use of the Data Visualization tool

Last date for submissions is March 24. Projects must be submitted in English. For more information please contact: datavizcontest_gb@oracle.com or call +35318033211.

Register today for the Oracle Data Visualization Contest.
 


Member Spotlight

We are turning the spotlight on our members who are making an impact with Oracle Academy.

The spotlight is on Dr. Bill Heldman, MBA, PhD, Computer Science and Cybersecurity Instructor, Warren Tech Central, Lakewood, Colorado, USA.

At Warren Tech Central, the teachers take Computer Science very, very seriously. They recognize that every student must understand something about code—how to write it, how to read it, how to play in the sandbox with coding teams, and why it exists. It’s not about every student becoming a computer science major or software engineer. It’s about understanding that computing is happening everywhere and always, and that being able to engage is essential for long-term success and growth opportunities in life and career.

Dr. Bill Heldman, Computer Science and Cybersecurity Instructor, Warren Tech Central—who prefers to go by Dr. Bill—practices “differentiated instruction” to help students engage in various aspects of technology. There is a lot more to computing than just coding. He says: “students who do not want to code can be successful in IT. There is a huge call for systems and business analysts and project managers these days, so it is not even necessarily important that a student has a deep handle on technology. Instead, they must understand business process flows—which Oracle Academy teaches in Database Design—and how to successfully manage projects.”

Oracle Academy: How do Oracle Academy resources help you achieve your teaching objectives?

Dr. Bill: With help from Oracle Academy, I teach Java and Python in the student’s first year, and C++, web development languages (HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, etc.), and C# in the second. By the time a student is a senior, they have a good sense for where they see themselves fitting into the industry, and I work with them to carve out a capstone project that makes sense for their career and college aspirations.

Databases are incredibly important to anyone working in IT. I really like Oracle Academy Database Design and Programming with SQL, and that Oracle Academy is agnostic to the type of database software a technologist might be using.

I am grateful to Oracle for making Oracle Academy available at such a reasonable cost (free is always good for teachers!) to instructors. I have found Oracle Academy technical support to be very good, and I am pleased that the company continues to improve and enhance Oracle Academy.

Oracle Academy: Why did you initially decide to attend Oracle Academy professional development?

Dr. Bill: I tell students that Oracle is the “80,000 pound gorilla” of databases. It’s big, it’s everywhere, and it’s in production use all over the world. If you’re going to work in IT, you have to know something about Oracle.

Oracle Academy: Technology used in business is changing rapidly. How does Oracle Academy help you provide your students with content and resources aligned to their current and future needs?

Dr. Bill: The ubiquity of enterprise databases cannot be ignored. Students are often surprised to learn that game development companies keep track of their business in databases. If you tell a student that Valve or Blizzard (two very large game companies) have enterprise databases to maintain, they get the idea that behind those games is an entire infrastructure of technology simply designed to support the games. I talk about game development in relation to coding, databases, web design and other things. This makes them want to know more about the guts of technology, and not just passively use it.

But Oracle isn’t just about databases. Java is singularly one of the most important programming languages that students will encounter in the world. I tell students that today’s data centers very often have many Oracle database servers, and the applications development teams are writing in Java. I tell students that the grading system my district uses is based on Java and Tomcat server. Java represents at least 50% of enterprise application development efforts, and cannot be ignored if one intends to work in IT.

It is important for students to understand that successful completion of Oracle Academy Database Design and Programming with SQL provides them a certificate of completion, and that looks great on their resume. Having experience and training in industry-standard applications like Oracle and programming languages like Java represents a big head-start in terms of college and career.

Oracle Academy: What inspired you to teach computer science?

Dr. Bill: I see computer science as the most important thing that a student—any student—can be learning today. The ubiquity of computers, electronics, robots, and other kinds of systems simply dictates that you are either a placid user, or you have some intelligence about what’s making the world go ‘round.

Computer Science is very unique in that, properly structured, students can get the idea that even though they think they are not technically proficient, they can carve out a place for themselves in the world of IT, and be pleasantly surprised that they do have some understanding of what’s going on. Some students will never understand coding. But that’s OK. There is a place for them in the world of IT.

Thank you Dr. Bill for your dedication and making an impact on your students!

It’s time to turn the spotlight onto our members who are making an impact with the Oracle Academy. If you are interested in being featured or nominating another member for the spotlight, please contact us.


Oracle Academy Advances Computer Science around the World


Europe, Middle East and Africa

Oracle Academy Continues to Invest in the Professional Development of Serbian Educators

On February 9 -11, Oracle Academy participated in the British Council New Technologies in Education conference in Belgrade. The conference focused on improving the quality of education through the use of information and communication technologies.

Oracle Academy is continuing its investment in the professional development of Serbian educators at all levels. Since 2006, Serbian schools and universities have been engaged with Oracle Academy and within the last academic year, 285 teachers have been trained in six Oracle Academy courses. These educators benefit from current industry-relevant academia which is globally recognized, free, vendor-neutral, and completely philanthropic. Oracle Academy’s investment in education helps advance computer science globally and drives knowledge, innovation, skills development, and diversity in technology fields. Students and educators who engage with Oracle Academy gain industry-relevant skills and knowledge that enrich their futures.


First Oracle Academy Day in Spain

On February 2, 2017, Oracle Academy Spain had the pleasure of inviting its current and prospect members to its first Oracle Academy day in Spain.

The event consisted focused on the digital transformation within the education framework and emphasized the importance of education and training in technology. Participants listened to presentations regarding Oracle’s Big Data and Cloud as well as stories from other Oracle Academy members who successfully integrate the program.


First Oracle Academy Day in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina Oracle Academy members enjoyed their first Oracle Academy Day at eMPIRICA University College, Tuzla, including Faculty of Electrical Engineering, eMPIRICA University College, and Secondary Vocational School for Electrical Engineering. The Ministry of Education, Science, Culture, and Sports of Tuzla Canton, Institute of the Canton and Oracle Academy organized the event for more than 100 participants.

Prime Minister of Tuzla Canton, Mr. Bego Gutić. Mr. Gutić, opened the event and emphasized that “education is not an expense, but a sound investment” and “good projects like this one will have support of the Government and the Pedagogical Institute.”


Future Prospects in Education

January 26 – 28, 2017, Oracle Academy sponsored the Sixteenth Annual Educational Symposium, “Future Prospects in Education” organized by Turkish Private Schools Association in Antalya. More than 1200 participants, including the Deputy Minister of National Education, association presidents representing Private Educational Institutions, academicians, scientists, educational specialists, and private school teachers. Participants had the chance to discover how Oracle Academy advances computer science education globally.


Oracle Academy Day in Romania a success

On December 7, 2016, Oracle Romania hosted an Oracle Academy Day for high school and university teachers as well Oracle Academy partners. The topic of discussion—benefits of IT in education and equipping students with the right skills to get ahead with digital careers.

“It was a great opportunity to participate in the Oracle Academy Day event and meet a high number of professors filled with enthusiasm and eagerness to teach their students Oracle Technology. We, the technical Oracle Romania LOBs, continuously provide assistance to the Academic Environment to ensure Oracle Academy curricula is better understood and implemented, support the education institutions with custom workshops, mentoring programs and knowledge transfer sessions,” said Florin Dragnea, ACS Director Oracle Romania.


Virtual Oracle Academy Day Keeps Members Current

To help keep our Romania faculty members current with our new offerings, Oracle organized a Virtual Oracle Academy Day on January 19, 2017 for ten university teachers and their students in Iasi, Romania. The event featured Oracle Academy member Adela Bara from Bucharest University of Economic Studies (ASE) who shared how her university successfully implemented Oracle Academy curriculum in the faculty for their students.
 


Japan and Asia Pacific

Ongoing Commitment to STEM Education in Hong Kong

Oracle Academy continues to support STEM education in Hong Kong entering into a three (3) year Partnership Agreement with the Pui Ching Academy (PCA). The goal of the collaboration is to use the Oracle Academy programs as a key component of STEM curriculum taught within primary and secondary schools. The hope is for more students to be focused on building upon science and math fundamentals and choose the technical disciplines to advance their career opportunities. The partnership will involve 25 institutions and 50 teachers reaching approximately 7,500 students over the next three years.


Oracle China Wins Award For Impact In Education

On January 16, 2017, China’s Ministry of Education (MOE) presented Oracle China with its ninth Very Important Contributor Award during a ceremony attended by senior MOE Officials, Chinese educators, and multinational corporate executives. The award was given to Oracle China in recognition for their ongoing commitment and contributions Oracle Academy has made to Chinese education.


Database Foundation Training For High Vocational Colleges in China

January 12 – 13, 2017, educators from sixteen schools gathered at the Shenzhen Institution of Information College, China, to train on Oracle Academy’s Database Foundation course as well as learn how to best implement the curriculum into their classrooms. The training was organized in collaboration with the High Vocational Colleges Committee, Guangdong Province.


Welcome University of the South Pacific!

Oracle Academy would like to welcome the University of the South Pacific (USP) as an Institutional member! USP is a regional university co-owned by 12 member states and has multiple campuses across Fiji, Samoa, Vanuatu, Cook Islands, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, and Tuvalu.

Over the course of 2017, USP will implement the various program offerings and benefits beginning with the School of Computing, Information, and Mathematical Sciences, Fiji, and continue to expand across the regional campuses.

Thank you USP for your commitment to computer science education!


Taiwan Faculty Members Learn Alice and Greenfoot

28 teachers from the Education Bureau of Taichung City, Taiwan, completed the Oracle Academy Getting Started with Java Using Alice and Creating Java Programs with Greenfoot workshops in order to bring the best technology practices, curriculum, and resources to their classrooms.
 


North America

Oracle Academy Participates in WASTC in California

On January 5, 2017, Oracle Academy participated in the Western Academy Support Training Center (WASTC) conference in San Jose, California. The Oracle Academy team met with Information Technology and Computer Science K-12 and higher education educators to provide information about the Oracle Academy Java and database curriculum pathways and the new Oracle Database and Java Junior Associated Certification designed for secondary and post-secondary students—enabling students to position themselves to further their education and to show expertise in a specific area of technology.

Additionally, Bill Reilly, Oracle Product Management Director, led an overview of IoT and Big Data to a full conference room of educators. Oracle Academy leverages Oracle’s global technology leadership to deliver learning resources such as our Data Science Bootcamp and Ask the Expert audio and webcast series for classroom teaching purposes. If you are interested in learning more, check out the Ask the Oracle Experts page.


Celebrate CTE Month® 2017!

Oracle Academy, along with others, celebrated Career Technical Education Month® in February, which was initiated by the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) through social media campaigns. CTE Month® is a public awareness campaign held each February to celebrate career and technical education (CTE) in the United States. CTE programs prepare students for careers in diverse fields such as information technology, agriculture, health care and many more. These programs can be found in secondary schools, career centers, community colleges, and four-year universities and ultimately provide students with both academic and career skills required by industry to be successful in today’s workplace. We live in a digital world today where coding and/or computer science skills are in-demand across a broad range of careers including but not limited to programmers, data analysts, designers of websites, engineers, and scientists conducting research. Oracle Academy resources support career technical education by aligning the Oracle Academy Java and Database certification pathways to the CTE Information Technology Career Cluster. At Oracle Academy, we believe everyone should have the skills and opportunities to chase their dreams therefore, are proud to support career technical education today and in the future!


THE Big Data + Analytics + Spatial + Cloud + IoT + Everything Cool Oracle User Conference

Oracle Academy sponsored twenty seven undergraduate juniors, seniors, and graduate students to attend the BIWA Summit ’17 at the Oracle Conference Center in Redwood Shores, California. The annual BIWA Summit was scheduled over a four day period, January 31 through February 2, 2017, and was held in conjunction with Spatial Summit, drawing several hundred customers to the event. This conference is a unique opportunity to learn about the latest in Oracle technology specific to Big Data, Machine Learning, Graph Analytics, Internet of Things, Cloud, and more.

Attendees have the opportunity to hear from more than 50 presenters representing Oracle partners, practitioners, and experts as they share best practices, customer case studies, and present on emerging technologies. Popular sessions included; Uncovering Complex Spatial and Graph Relationships: On Database, Big Data, and Cloud, Analyzing the Panama Papers with Oracle Big Data Spatial and Graph Oracle Cloud Cookbook for Professionals, Oracle’s Advanced Analytics 12.2c New Features & Road Map: Bigger, Better, Faster, More, and Custom Maps in Oracle Big Data Discovery with Oracle Spatial and The State of Industrial IoT, just to name a few.

The Oracle Academy student participants were able to explore hot new trends in the Oracle ecosystem, allowing their future work and studies to be enhanced as they emerge into the leaders of tomorrow.

From a student participant, “This conference is refreshing because it provides me the opportunity to learn about new concepts from the experts. I’ve only been to one session so far and I’ve already learned about two new cutting edge tools!”

Oracle Academy was pleased to work collaboratively with the BIWA +Spatial Summit organizers. To learn more about this event, visit the BIWA Summit page.


Hardware and Software, Engineered to Work Together