Standout Student In Steven-May 2024

Standout student in Steven – May 2024

Hope IT should share stories of our students a bit more.  Our first is the story of our standout student.  Our partner which brought Steven to Hope IT is the Door of Hope, and they created the video below.  This is also a story of partnership.

Video was created by the Door of Hope, on the story of their youth – Steven

Rarely does Hope IT encounter students that are such high-achievers, and continually takes on new opportunities.  Steven has been that student for the last 2 years for Hope IT.  He is exceptional.  It is not easy to continue to stretch yourself, as a young person.  We are stunned at what Steven has done.  We note that he took one step and a time, one course at a time, but each time, he continued getting stronger, more confident, and even more opportunities came to him. We are overjoyed having the opportunity to work with him.

We celebrate with Steven in all that he has done, accomplished, and look forward to where he is going.  Below is the list of accomplishments Steven has done with Hope IT.

  • Steven has tied the record for the most Hope IT courses taken by a student, which is 5 courses. 
    • These are the courses he took: Robotics, WordPress, Python programming, Data Analysis, and SQL, from October 2022 to March 2024.
    • See the 1st and 2nd picture below of Steven being in Hope IT courses.  Those were his first time with us, and his last time (in-person).
    • He did this in 2 school years.
    • He basically took all the courses that he could.  (And the last course, OK, we made it an on-line course so he could take it.)
    • Steven moved far away from LA after his junior year in high school, but Hope IT was able to stay in contact with him, and he still took 2 on-line courses in 2024 being far away.
  • Paid opportunities:  One learns a set of skills, and uses those skills…and gets paid.  That’s the pattern most of us use, and it applies to our students.
    • April 2023: Steven assisted the Hope IT team in teaching other students, for 4 weeks, in the Robotic course only for Door of Hope students.  He was paid $16.50 per hour.  He came to a separate Saturday preparation session, so our entire Hope IT was ready to help the students learn.  See the 3rd and 4th pictures below with Steven at the preparation session, and him assisting another student during the course.
    • May 2023: Steven was the very first student to complete the Hope IT internship.  Below are the details:
      • Work 5 hours per week remotely, for 4 weeks.  He got paid $16.50 per hour.
      • He worked on the Bridges website, using his newly acquired WordPress skills from the Hope IT course, reporting to the Bridges professional IT manager.
      • Steven created/altered 2 web pages for Bridges.
    • Steven got another paid internship with the Door of Hope, to help them with their own website, using WordPress.
    • February 2024:, Steven co-taught the Hope IT WordPress course for other students, now that he is very good at WordPress.  Steven got paid for this as well, for 11.5 hours, at $16.50.  He has to show up before the course, debrief after the course, and have a few separate preparation sessions to review the lesson plan with the main Hope IT instructor, as well as practice teaching.
  • Hope IT created monthly check-in sessions, to stay in touch with Steven.  Steven and his family moved far from LA in the summer before his senior year in high school.  Hope IT had to find a way to stay in touch, and Steven was receptive to the idea.  He showed up on time for these on-line sessions.  These were times to answer any tech questions he had, but we mostly just listened to how he is doing, and sharing our perspectives and stories on overcoming challenges, and continuing to expand your skills and mindset.  (Hope IT would like to do this with other students going forward.)
  • College admission: Not surprisingly, Hope IT concluded that Steven is outstanding.  There was no way the Hope IT team would leave Steven alone in the college admission process.  He was not getting other input.  Via Hope IT’s contacts, Steven got expert pro bono college admissions counseling, with both college and scholarship applications.  He had to work hard taking the SAT test, fill out college applications, writing essays, and these included additional meetings (and deadlines of course) that he took on. It was way worth it!!
    • Going to college:
      • Steven was admitted and has chosen to attend UC Berkeley!!!
      • While finishing high school, Steven also attends Bakersfield College.
    • Other colleges he was admitted to:
      • UC Santa Barbara
      • UC Riverside
      • Cal Poly Pomona
      • Cal State Channel Islands
      • Cal State Bakersfield

As Hope IT (and the rest of us) tried to re-pivot after the main COVID surges subsided, we met Steven.  He has been a consistent encouragement for the Hope IT team for 2 years.  He works hard, and pushes himself.  We are so glad so much of his hard work has paid off.  We thank God for Steven.  Join us in praying for Steven, as he takes the next steps to college.

Obviously, Hope IT is so encouraged.  We continue on to work with more students.  Our Python programming course to solve mazes starts soon in June.  We look forward to that course, and meeting new students.

Thank you for continuing to pray for Steven, the other Hope IT students, our partners, and the Hope IT team.  God bless.


–Mike Veerman
Hope IT team lead

This is the very first time Steven went to a Hope IT course – a Robotics course – in October 2022.
Python course in June 2023 – Steven is literally surrounded by the Hope IT team. This is the last time Steven is at an in-person Hope IT course before he moves far away in the summer of 2023
Steven went to a session with the Hope IT team and other volunteers to prepare for the Door of Hope Robotics course.
Steven assisted another student at the Door of Hope Robotics course in April 2023.