I want to share my excitement about an innovative course I had a privilege to co-teach. The “Samsung App Academy - App4Tomorrow edition” is a fruit of labor of Filippo Maria Renga and his team. It’s a product of Samsung Italy, in collaboration with MIP Politecnico di Milano Graduate School of Business and the Department of Electronics, Computer Science and Bioengineering of the Politecnico di Milano.
The innovative nature of the course is that (apart from helping recent graduates to acquire the latest digital-world skills, being highly intensive and practice-driven) the course was propelled by an audacious goal – students had to demonstrate their training by developing real projects of social significance and impact in collaboration with industry partners. Student were not working on abstract course projects, nope. Instead they had to collaborate with local businesses to deliver real-world apps to address the business and societal needs.
As an instructor, the biggest challenge of this course was to teach young graduates to design mobile applications regardless of their previous education. Most of the students came in without any technical background, yet with tremendous motivation.
In the course of four months the students were introduced to the world of object-oriented programming and Android app development. They had to grasp basic and advanced programming concepts (Java, mobile operating systems, graphical user interface design, databases, etc.) in a course of few weeks, and sometimes days.
And guess what? They delivered!
A couple of examples: Petruzzelli Theater has a new mobile look. Hospital San Lazzaro received a mobile solution to help patients tracking their therapies. Another app shows real-time data about obstacles for accessing public spaces for handicapped.
Very proud of each and all of them!
P.S.: a few of the press releases (in Italian):