San Diego Mayors’ Cyber Cup Competition

Each year a consortium of companies and education institutions [below] sponsor the San Diego Mayor’s Cyber Cup competition. All schools are invited to participate (both middle/junior and high schools) across all disciplines (not just math & science). I’ve attached a PDF ( 2016_MayorsCyberCup_Flier_20150908 ) that covers the event in more detail. If you’d like to organize and sponsor a team at your site (each team has about 4 or 5 students but you can have more than one team per site), the consortium can provide you with a mentor to get you going and help you along. They’re well aware that most of us are intimidated and uneducated on the subject– which is why they do this. The window for applying is September through December, 2015, which includes mentoring and training, so the earlier you sign up, the better.
It’s fun, it’s challenging, it’s enlightening [it’s not just all technical — it raises personal and social awareness issues], it’s team problem solving. There’s a very brief [1 minute] youtube video here. If you have any questions/concerns, please contact Bruce Arnold at UCSD Mathematics Dept. or Chris Simpson of Bright Moon Security at National University. Everyone wins by finishing better informed than having never tried. Administrators welcomed.



The Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) invites you to participate in the 16th Annual CSTA Conference. This event will be held July 10-12, 2016, in San Diego, California.

The CSTA 2016 Program Committee seeks proposal submissions related to the practice of teaching and learning computer science and information technology in K-12. This year, the conference is seeking 3-hour workshops, 1-hour sessions, 20-minute mini-sessions and 1-hour Birds of a Feather.  Proposals for all session types must include:

  • the names and contact information for all presenters
  • an overview of the session
  • a description of the intended audience (level, knowledge, …)
  • a description of session activity (in sufficient detail for an informed decision)
  • presenter background and presentation experience

Proposal must also include an expanded description (to be submitted as a PDF attachment) that provides the following information:

  • background for the topic to be presented
  • description of the information to be covered
  • description of why this information is relevant/useful to K-12 computer science and information technology teachers
  • description of what the attendees will learn from this presentation, and
  • description of any handouts

Presenters will have the use of a computer projector and screen. If additional equipment or facilities are required, this should be clearly requested in the proposal; it may be possible to accommodate such requests but this cannot be guaranteed. Presenters will be required to pay for their conference registration.

All proposals will be submitted through the online conference submission system that can be found at you encounter a problem with the submission system, please contact Tammy Pirmann at

The deadline for proposals is midnight (Hawaiian time) on October 1, 2015. Review of proposals will occur shortly thereafter and notification of a decision will be made around November 2, 2015.  All submission will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  • technical quality
  • writing and presentation
  • relevance to CSTA (focus on K-12 computer science)
  • uniqueness
  • general conference theme and needs

Successful proposers should expect to be asked to submit a draft copy of their presentation by May 10, 2016. Draft presentations will be posted on the website for attendee reference and note-taking. All final presentations will be gathered by room proctors at the end of each session. Some sessions may be selected for videotaping, which will be shared online post conference. All workshops and sessions will be photographed.

Why present at CSTA 2016? The CSTA annual conference is the only CS conference specifically dedicated to meeting the needs of K-12 computer science educators. Come network with your peers, present your great ideas, and learn best practices. Here is what some 2015 conference attendees had to say about the conference:

  • “Best session and workshops I’ve ever attended at CSTA conference!”
  • “This was my first year as a CS teacher, and I’ve heard a number of good ideas that I’m excited to research further and implement in my classroom”
  • “CSTA has very welcoming presenters, participants and volunteers”
  • “Excellent conference! Very informative and exciting!”
  • “Networking opportunities and new friendships are invaluable!
  • ‘Best conference value for my PD dollars that I have found to date!”

Additional conference details can be found at

The deadline for proposals is midnight (Hawaiian time) on October 1, 2015.

We look forward to receiving your proposals and to your attendance at the conference.

The 2016 Annual Conference Planning Committee:

UCSD Mentor Assistance Program Announced

The UCSD San Diego Supercomputer Center and the UCSD School of Medicine Health Sciences Division 

  • Mentor Assistance Program (MAP)
  • November 2015 – May 2016
  • Student Application Period: September 1- 30, 2015

Program Overview 

UC San Diego’s Mentor Assistance Program (MAP) is a new campus-wide program, which will engage high school students in a mentoring relationship with an expert from a vast array of disciplines, from History, Marine Physical Sciences and Nanoengineering to Biochemistry, Pharmacology, Athletics and Computer Science.  MAP’s mission is to provide a pathway for student researchers to gain access to UCSD faculty, postdoctoral fellows and staff to mentor students in their own field of interest (i.e. independent study, class projects or Science Fair projects).  Students may choose to communicate with a mentor over email or may indicate their interest to visit the mentor’s lab or work environment. MAP is an opportunity for students to take the first step into a potential career path. MAP students will build an early foundation for success in their academic career. 

UCSD’s MAP has received astounding support from the UCSD campus and community and we welcome all students with open arms, including underserved populations, women and those with disabilities.  As such, UCSD will provide a San Diego Metropolitan Transit System Compass Card to all accepted students who have transportation concerns.

Further Program and Application Information 

For complete information about MAP, including eligibility, to meet the program mentors, to download a program flyer, view a MAP program video and to download a MAP student application, please visit

Guidance and Answers at Your Fingertips
Kellie Church of the School of Medicine (; x40308) and Ange Mason of the San Diego Supercomputer Center (, x45064) are available to provide guidance and answer any questions you might have. Just ask!