Jocks and nerds haven’t always gotten along in years past, but Code.org aims to bring them together for the third annual Hour of Code with a sports-themed coding campaign.The campaign, which kicks off today, will feature support from superstar athletes like Kobe Bryant, the Golden State Warriors Draymond Green, Serena Williams, Neymar Jr, Sergio Ramos and Marcelo Vieira from Real Madrid C.F. and the Seattle Storm’s Sue Bird.
Code.org is also introducing a new sports-themed coding tutorial to get young sports enthusiasts interested in programming.
“These athletes are role models for students globally and will help reinforce the diversity results of Code.org’s work,” Code.org founder Hadi Partovi said.
This isn’t the first time the program has pulled in some celebrity power to get kids interested. President Obama kicked off the first year by writing a line of code himself.
Code.org also said Hour of Code has reached several milestones, including 300 million students served with one hour of code and a total of 20 billion written lines of code so far.
Hour of Code also says it has introduced at least 10 percent of all students globally to coding through its program and Partovi mentioned how increasingly important it was to teach young people programming to prepare them for a future world where manufacturing and other fields are going to robots instead of humans.
“We should instead prepare all students for the jobs of the future,” Partovi said. “An Hour of Code doesn’t prepare a student for a job, but it opens their mind about what they could be when they grow up, and that can make all the difference.”