Code to Joy: Contender in the NSF's VITAL Prize Challenge

Vanderbilt University's Code to Joy team, part of the LIVE Initiative, has reached the final round of the NSF's VITAL Prize Challenge with their innovative project, BeatBlox, a music-based approach to teaching computer science. Among 18 finalists, Code to Joy is competing for cash prizes to improve K-12 education, particularly for marginalized students. If successful, winners will be announced in January, and each finalist has received $50,000 for research and development. BeatBlox, led by team members Will Hedgecock and Pascal Le Boeuf, uses block-based programming to teach computer science through music, making it accessible to diverse learners. Notably, Akos Ledeczi, a professor of computer science, is a key contributor to the team's success. If they win, the team aims to implement BeatBlox in classrooms nationwide through industry partnerships.

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