By DASCHELL M. PHILLIPS
GenTech Digital Media & STEM Education Center has added a Hyde Park location for its Saturday Program. The program prepares students for high-demand fields in digital media and science, technology, engineering, and medicine (STEM).
The program, which previously held classes at the Illinois Institute of Technology and the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC), held its first Hyde Park classes at the Ramada Lakeshore Chicago, 4900 S. Lake Shore Dr., on Oct. 12., using one of the hotel’s conference rooms.
Debra Thompson, Hyde Park resident and founder of Gen Tech, said frustrated parents urged her to open a Hyde Park location and she’s glad she found a place. She will continue to offer one class at the UIC location but the rest of her classes, six in total, will be offered in Hyde Park.
Classes include video game creation, Xbox game design, 3-D character animation, robotics and a computer building class called “Raspberry Pie.” The program, which also offers a summer camp, takes children on field trips that allow them to get hands-on training. Trips include an Areo Space program at Louis University, using a 3D Printer at the Museum of Science and Industry and a soon-to-come medical technology program.
“The new location is much more convenient,” Thompson said. “Parking is easier and parents said they can wait in the hotel’s restaurant or exercise on the lakefront while waiting on their children.”
She said Gent Tech is right at home in an academic-rich community like Hyde Park.
“Hyde Park is a community of high expectations and innovation,” Thompson said. “It makes this a plus for Hyde Park and a plus for Gen Tech.”
Registration is still open and scholarships are available. To register for the program, call 773-324-7772 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.