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C Spire Hosts New Coding Challenge for High School Students Next Week


Part of Tech Movement initiative aimed at developing jobs and careers for the workforce of the future

Ridgeland, Miss., (March 15, 2019) - News media representatives are invited to attend C3, a regional coding challenge, next week convened by C Spire, a Mississippi-based wireless, technology and broadband firm, and designed to better prepare students for a high-tech future by encouraging and enabling them to pursue a degree and career in information technology and computer science.

The C Spire coding challenge on Thursday, March 21 at the company’s Ridgeland headquarters will feature teams of up to four students each from 33 public and private high schools across the state competing for scholarships and other tech-related prizes. Four previous competitions since April 2017 have involved 88 high schools and over 380 students in 49 counties.

Students and at least one adviser from each school will use critical thinking and problem-solving skills to solve a fun, fresh computer coding challenge during the day-long competition. C Spire employees with IT backgrounds and experience are volunteering to help each team. Members of the top three teams will receive college scholarships.

Pepper, a four-foot tall humanoid robot from Softbank Robotics America with a tablet for a chest, also will be on hand interacting with students and other guests participating in the competition. Lobaki, a Jackson-based company that runs a virtual reality studio, will provide demonstrations during the challenge.

The C3 program can serve as an important first step to increase interest in computer science, Lewis said. In 2018, only 191 students in the state took the AP computer science exam and only 217 students graduated from college with computer science degrees in 2017, according to, a computer science education advocacy group.

Lewis said it’s never too early to start preparing students for a technology-infused future. Research shows that by the time children in grades K-6 graduate from high school and college, 60 percent will work in jobs and professions that do not exist today.

The company-sponsored coding challenges and support for other public and private programs like the Base Camp Coding Academy and a recent partnership with Mississippi State University Research and Curriculum Unit’s Center for Cyber Education are designed to help C Spire deliver on its promise to help create and retain a 21st century technology workforce.

C3 is part of a broader C Spire Tech Movement initiative designed to move communities forward through technology with a focus on broadband access, workforce development and innovation.

To learn more about the C3 coding challenge, visit To learn more about the C Spire Tech Movement and how businesses and individuals can volunteer or financially support these workforce development initiatives, visit

WHEN: Thursday, March 21, 2019, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

WHERE: C Spire Corporate Headquarters, 1018 Highland Colony Parkway, Ridgeland, MS 39157

WHO: Hu Meena, CEO, C Spire, Carla Lewis, CIO, C Spire, High school students and advisers from 33 schools across the state, Pepper, 4-foot tall humanoid robot from Softbank Robotics America, Lobaki, Jackson-based virtual reality training program

About C Spire
C Spire is a leading technology company committed to transforming its service areas through the C Spire Tech Movement initiative, which includes broadband deployment, technology innovation and workforce development. The company provides world-class, customer-inspired wireless communications, 1 Gigabit consumer Internet access as well as a full suite of dedicated Internet, wireless, IP Voice, data, cloud and managed IT services for businesses. This news release and other announcements are available at For more information about C Spire, visit or follow us on Facebook at or Twitter at