When I started BDPA I wasn’t sure if programming was a skill that I could possess. I didn’t think that I could memorize a whole new language and be able to recall and implement what I learned to make a fully functional website. I remember one of the first days of class our teacher Mark Holden walked us though creating a very basic html website; and after completing the website I started to think that I could easily learn how to program and make fully functional websites. In my first year while in 10th grade at BDPA I made the HSCC team but was an alternate on the competing team. I took 11th grade off because I had a job that required me to work on Saturdays. In 12th grade I came back to BDPA to make the HSCC team again and make the competing team where the Twin Cities chapter earned a 4th place at the BDPA competition in North Carolina.
BDPA taught me a lot of skills that I use today in life. BDPA taught me how to program in three different languages (C#, VB, and HTML) which I have implemented in my programming classes in college. Even though BDPA is a programming based program they made sure that the students learned public speaking skills and how to act in formal situations. I am now more comfortable talking in front of an audience than I was before BDPA.
BDPA has defiantly impacted my career decisions. In BDPA I learned how I could get into peoples computers and shut them down, or open files. After learning how to do this I discovered that I wanted to have a career where I could get paid to hack or protect people from hackers. I am now double majoring in Network Security and Network System Administration with a minor in Networking.