DYC STUDENT LEADER SPOTLIGHT
Santa Clara, California, USA
PVSA Bronze Award
Contribution in Year:
Hello! My name is Neelesh Seerapu, and I am currently a sophomore at Adrian Wilcox High School. Some of my friends call me a geek because I love doing calculus and coding, but it’s really just a fraction of my personality. I thoroughly enjoy trying new things, as recently I started editing YouTube videos and playing chess. Lastly, I am a basketball enthusiast, and while I may not be the best at it, I play with friends or family every day. So apart from the coding workshops I have already done, these are areas I wish to explore in the future.
The first time I discovered DYC was in 2020, when I was still an 8th grader. Since then, I have learned many skills, not only python programming (the language I teach), but also in how to host workshops and the most effective ways to teach children. My most recent workshop, in 2022, was a December long beginner to intermediate course which featured a small group of eager kids. It helped me come out of my comfort zone as far as teaching and prepping for more advance concepts. This workshop also helped me realize how useful preparing slides and material before sessions was. Around the same time as these workshops, I helped review the DYC website and raised $100 USD for the organization. My favorite, and most successful workshop, was the gargantuan, 18-session summer beginner workshop I held through July and August. This gave me my first taste of teaching 15–20 children, which alone was difficult, but I did this 3 times a week. I connected with and helped a lot of students try programming for the first time in their lives, but helped them become comfortable with it in a span of weeks. At the closing of the course, it was a very satisfying feeling, receiving many positive emails and donations to the organization.
I really want to thank DYC for putting me and many others in a position where I can make an impact on not just my local community, but on kids all around the world. And I’d like to add that 2022 is just the beginning of what’s to come. In 2023, I am planning and have taken the initiative to do more in-person volunteering, and to vary the fields in which I am holding my workshops. I can’t wait to do more this year!