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Computer club offers hands on experience

Students who would like to have hands on experience with the computer gaming and programming industry, are invited to join the ACM club at TJC.

ACM, Association for Computing Machinery, is a national organization that promotes interest and use of computers for not only school, but also work and play.

“Computers are in every field,” Gigi Delk, primary sponsor of ACM, said. “No matter what your major is, your success at that major is probably, to some extent, determined by your ability to use a computer effectively.”

ACM student members have the opportunity to go to two major fieldtrips each year. Sony Online Entertainment in Austin was one of the places members visited last year. This semester, ACM members will once again be going to Austin but to different sites.

“This time we’re taking two independent trips, one for more of the art side and one for the people more interested in the programming side. Trion’s going to be for the artists and Red Fly is going to be for the programmers. That way everybody is going to get the most out of the trip and ask the questions that they can ask,” Matt Oates, a TJC Video Game and Simulation Programming major and student president of ACM, said.

Students don’t necessarily have to be Computer Science majors to be members of the ACM club.

“We welcome everyone who is interested in dealing with computers,” Delk said.

ACM members are involved in several activities on campus. Some of the activities they have been active with are freshmen orientations, recycling of printer cartridges and cell phone components, homecoming decorations, and in Expanding Your Horizons, a national program that shows young women the importance of science, math, technology and engineering in their future career.

ACM’s goal in Expanding Your Horizon is to “expose young women to the idea of being video game designers,” Delk said.

Students who are interested in ACM have the choice to become local student members or national members. field trips, attend meetings, participate in ACM activities, and learn more about computer science, all for free.

“We don’t make you pay just to become a student member.” Oates said. “We have a lot of people that kinda show up.”

Being a national member offers all these advantages, plus the ability to access 2,200 online courses, 500 online books, and receiving ACM magazines. However, students who wish to become national members will have to pay a fee of $19 per year.

“There’s thousands of dollars worth of stuff online that they [national members] get for free if they join,” David Alger, assistant sponsor of ACM, said.

ACM members meet twice a month for a chapter meeting. Students who are interested in ACM or who wish to attend one of ACM’s meetings to know more about the organization, may contact Gigi Delk by email at gdel@tjc.edu. They may also contact ACM Assistant Sponsors, David Alger at dalg@tjc.edu or Casey Callender at ccal@tjc.edu for more information.

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