About Code 510

Code 510 is a computing workshop, sponsored by the UC Berkeley School of Information, where undergraduate and graduate mentors support local youth as they learn and apply coding and design skills to their own creative projects. Mentors come from a wide variety of backgrounds including art and computer science, as well as the natural and social sciences. The goal of Code 510 is to help young people understand the many ways in which computing can be applied by engaging them in projects that develop their computing, design, research, and communication skills.

Each new session (Fall, Spring, and Summer) is always collaborative, participatory, and co-created through a blend of mentor and student skills and interests. For example, last year (2014-15) students explored a variety of technologies – including JavaScript, HTML, CSS, and databases – in order to make a JavaScript game and a community-based app. During the summer of 2015, students learned web architecture and coding to create their own social media apps using the Instagram, SoundCloud, and Twitter APIs. This year (2015-16), students have been engaged in an even a wider variety of projects, including online portfolios, 3D characters and environments, and 2D JavaScript games.

About the UC Berkeley School of Information

The School of Information—or “I School”—is Berkeley’s newest department, housed in Berkeley’s oldest building, South Hall. We are primarily a graduate program, although we do teach some undergraduate courses. I School graduate students and professors study the social and human aspects of computing, including law and policy, privacy and security, user interface design, information visualization, information architecture and databases, and open source software. Website

Mentors / Volunteers

Sarah Van Wart

Role: Head facilitator & mentor

What brought you to Code 510: I think it’s important to give young people the opportunity to learn about computing — particularly since phones, apps, and the Internet are so pervasive. We hope that by helping youth to design and build their own apps, games, and virtual worlds, they’ll not only build their computer science skills, but also understand a bit more about how the world, and the world of computing, connect. I also think that helping youth to instantiate their own creative projects is just really fun, and I find that I’m always learning as we figure out how to implement ideas together.

What you study at Cal: I am a fourth year PhD student at the UC Berkeley School of Information. I study how information and communication technologies (ICTs) can be used to support youth in experiential learning projects, and also how to design supportive and generative computer science learning environments.


Tapan Parikh

Head adviser Tapan Parikh is a professor at the UC Berkeley School of Information.


Noura Howell

Role: Mentor

What brought you to Code 510: Working with fun people!

What you study at Cal: Human-Computer Interaction.


Lucio Lopez

Role: Mentor

What brought you to Code 510: I really like working with young people who are excited to code and helping students with their ideas!

What you study at Cal: I am an Undergrad studying Electrical Engineering and Computer Science(EECS)

Karin Goh

Role: Mentor

What brought you to Code 510: High school is where my own love for computer science grew and I’d love to be able to give back and help others develop their own passion.

What you study at Cal: I’m a second year undergrad majoring in Computer Science and minoring in Human Rights


Ellen Van Wyk

Role: Mentor

What brought you to Code 510: I want to be involved in interesting, creative work at the intersection of art and technology.

What you study at Cal: I’m a second year Master’s student studying Human Computer Interaction and Design.


Join Us

If you are interested in joining as a mentor or a student, or have questions about the program, please reach out to facilitator Sarah Van Wart.

When: Fridays 4:30-6:30 during Berkeley semesters

Where: South Hall, Berkeley CA, 94704

Ages: Middle through High School

What to Expect: New students will learn the basics of web programming, then work on a project of their choice either independently or as a team

Current Projects: 3D game animation, website development, 2D animation

Contact: vanwars@ischool.berkeley.edu