For Immediate Release
November 27, 2012
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BROCKPORT, NY—A class at The College at Brockport, State University of New York, has utilized their skills to benefit a local Boy Scout troop—and gain a beneficial learning opportunity in the process.
Boy Scout Troop 209 in Fairport, NY, like other troops in the region, sells Christmas trees each year to raise money for various activities. But they’ve found that they lacked an efficient way to track their sales, inventory, and monitor the hours logged by their volunteers. This resulted in inaccurate numbers and unexpected outcomes.
Sandeep Mitra, a Brockport associate professor of computer science, saw this as a perfect service learning opportunity for the students in his Software Systems Engineering and Object-Oriented Software Development courses. The students were put into three groups of five, where they were challenged to come up with a computerized system that would fulfill the needs of the troop.
One group’s project perfectly fit the needs of the troop. Their system performs functions that maintains inventory of the trees, provided a barcode to identify specific tree types, tracks tree sales and has the capability to record donations made to the troop.
Mitra was thrilled to give his students the opportunity to offer their services to an actual customer and experience how it feels to produce a much-needed product.
“The students got to see how their work can actually benefit the customer, and from there, the larger community,” Mitra says.
Scott McKee, the troop's scoutmaster, says the project was a great experience for his scouts.
“The program that the students created gives our scouts the chance to operate a modern point of sale system that involves scanning bar codes and data entry similar to point of sale systems they will encounter in everyday life,” McKee says. “The ability to filter data several ways will allow the Troop to refine what varieties of trees to purchase and in what quantities in order to be able to serve the Christmas tree needs in our community better than before.”
The College at Brockport, State University of New York
350 New Campus Drive * Brockport, New York 14420-2931
(585) 395-2754 * FAX (585) 395-2723 * www.brockport.edu