For Immediate Release: Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Codecraft Computer Programming Competition Award Ceremony returned to Groundswell Startups and Domi Station on April 27, 2018

A packed event celebrated Florida student success, entrepreneurship, and STEM education.

Melbourne, Florida April 30, 2018The Codecraft Foundation hosted its third annual Codecraft Computer Programming Competition (CCPC) award ceremony at Groundswell Startups in Melbourne for 200+ families on Friday evening. This competition brings together industry professionals from local high-tech companies to showcase the ability of students who participate in Codecraft programs to apply real-world STEM skills learned and how their work is applied beyond the classroom.


CEO Micah Widen posed some a few questions to the local emerging tech-talent and spoke about entrepreneurial support at Groundswell.

During the 2018 school year, more than 400 primary and secondary school-aged students across the state of Florida participated in 4 technical courses; Intro to Computer Science and Engineering, Game Development, Web Development, and Python Programming. Sustaining sponsors of the Codecraft Foundation include Rockwell Collins, IBM, Northrop Grumman, and Embraer Foundation helped to provide financial-need based access to interested participants. Students participate in weekly programs, both in-person and virtually, working to design, develop and polish a final program or application.


Sagan Manley of Hoover Middle School took home 1st place in the Python Programming category.
Virtual courses offer accessibility and produced excellent results for this Orlando family.

Participants and mentors agreed this season-ending event is the most inspiring highlight of hard work, talent, and problem-solving of the year. Susan Winkler shared surprised and enthusiasm for the level of participation that students showed developing solutions to real problems. After seeing a highlight video for Emmanuel Richter game, inspired by the need for conservation of the Indian River Lagoon “Wow. So many future entrepreneurs and developers!”  

First place in the Intro to Computer Science and Engineering went to Elara Bolding of RL Stevenson. Elara’s mom, Amy, says Elara loves solving problems in code.

Codecraft Foundation Chairperson and an Event Sponsor, Christopher Struttmann, is committed to seeing the STEM pipeline widened for the benefit of students and local businesses. “We have about 20 engineers in our office here in town and last summer, I had the opportunity to hire Codecraft alumni as a summer intern last year. [He] was a participant in the first CCPC event, a Codecraft US Cyber Patriot team member, and a mentor. I watched Lee gain knowledge at an incredible rate, I watched him help others, and I watched Lee produce value for both the Codecraft community and for himself.”  Founder of Indian River Networks, Eric Schmit, agrees and sponsored.

But these aren’t the only companies that benefit by hiring Codecraft alumni.  Darren Crawford, Co-founder & COO of the Better Foundation said, “I’ve had the pleasure of hiring several young adults in a variety of capacities and am in nothing but awe at their capabilities and professionalism. They are truly developing our future technology leaders and the first place I look for talented young men and women to grow my enterprise.”

A few of the Melbourne High School students in attendance, from left to right: Nakeya Adams, Keli Snellman, Aaron Stewart, Julia Winkler, Megan Landin.
Christopher Struttmann, Chairperson

In his closing remarks from the podium, Mr. Struttmann delivered a clear message to the audience, “To this day, I’ve not seen another program that can yield such impactful results at such an impressionable age. As we start to see Codecrafters transition from students to alumni, the results are becoming incredibly obvious. This program works.”


About the Company. The Codecraft Foundation is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Since 2014, the foundation has been providing financial aid to help students and changing lives one bit at a time.

For more information:

Name: Juliette Mondesir Adams

Position­: Vice Chairperson


A packed event celebrated Florida student success, entrepreneurship, and STEM education