WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- Campers from the White Plains Youth Bureau’s Bits and Pieces Summer Camp will compete on Friday, Aug. 1 in the KenKen, a challenging pencil-and-paper puzzle that will help sharpen their math skills.
The event, co-sponsored by the Westchester County Youth Bureau for the second year in a row, will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the camp, located at the Church Street School, 295 Church St., White Plains. “The KenKen contest is a great way to work on math skills in a fun, challenging way,” said County Executive Robert P. Astorino. “This contest is another way we continue to support and promote STEM education in Westchester.” STEM – or science, technology, engineering and math – has been an ongoing focus for Astorino, who says it is imperative Westchester encourage the skills needed in today’s high-tech workforce. Iris Pagan, executive director of the Westchester Youth Bureau, added: “The Japanese words mean ‘I can think, I can think,’ which is precisely our message to these campers. The skills they learn have the potential to help them in their everyday lives, far beyond just math classes.”
The idea to have a contest grew out of a conversation between Pagan and Jing Xie, a member of the county youth board who is also an IBM employee. This year the event was coordinated by his colleague, Willie Blassingame, under the sponsorship of Tara Radford, CFO of IBM Security Systems, and Brad Short, CFO of IBM Business Analytics. More than 30 IBMers plan to join the campers in their day of KenKen. KenKen has a local office in Pleasantville, which will assist with the camp competition.