CCBC Catonsville teams dominate Fifth Annual Java Programming Competition (College Division)

May 10, 2016 | by Jacquie Lucy | 443.840.4668 (office) | 443.761.2482 (cell)

Poly wins, Carver places and River Hill shows in the High School Division!

Catonsville, MD –Teams from the Community College of Baltimore County, Catonsville garnered first and second place in the college division in this year’s Fifth Annual CCBC Java Programming Competition held in May at CCBC Catonsville. CCBC students on the winning team (Team 2) were Dorothy Carter of Baltimore, Md. and Dawitt Gebremariam and Nahuel Viera of Windsor Mill. Second place went CCBC Team 1 (Brenden Coley and Jordania Donaldson of Reisterstown, Md. and Owen Klasmeir of Sparrows Point, Md.) CCBC has won four out of the five years of the tourney.

Hosted by CCBC School of Applied and Information Technology, the competition is an off-shoot of a similar event held nationally by the Consortium for Computing Sciences in Colleges for four-year colleges and universities. CCBC teams have also participated in CCSC events at Marymount University in Virginia, Furman University in South Carolina and York College in Pennsylvania. Initially, CCBC was the only community college team competing and had the only diverse team of competitors and female coach (Darlene Cross, associate professor of Information Technology.) CCBC has been able to finish in the top ten ranks twice.

In an attempt to broaden interest in CCBC’s Computer Science/Information Technology program among local community college and high school students, Cross has been hosting this annual Java competition for the last four years. Her goal is that the competition be a recruitment, retention and completion vehicle for computer sciences. And it’s working! She now has students who say they chose CCBC because of the Java Programming courses and competition. The competition has also generated loyalty by program alumni.

The Java competition model is simple. There can be up to ten teams. Each team is comprised of two to four competitors, who are given five problems to solve as a team within a three-hour time period. Each problem is color-coded so that when a team solves the problem, a balloon of the same color is blown up and attached to their chair! Then the competitors move to the next problem.

“I am proud to host this competition annually and to see the increasing number of schools and teams participating in what is a grueling three hours of programming that really tests the skills of the student competitors,” notes Cross.

This year’s competition attracted seven local public high schools from Baltimore City, Baltimore and Howard Counties: Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, Carver Vocational-Technical, Dulaney, Parkville, River Hill, Western Tech and Woodlawn. Students from the Baltimore City School teams at Poly (Team 1) and Carver (Team 2) finished first and second respectively. Howard County’s River Hill (Teams 1 and 2) took both third and fourth place.

For information about the CCBC Information Technology degree and certificate programs, visit


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CCBC offers hundreds of programs and thousands of courses helping people of all ages, backgrounds and interests earn degrees, transfer, launch or advance careers, and prepare for in-demand jobs.

Providing accessible, affordable and high-quality education since 1957, CCBC educates more than 70,000 students each year, including half of all Baltimore County residents attending college in Maryland as undergraduates. Committed to student success and the development of lifelong learners who strengthen our regional workforce and enrich our community, CCBC has also been selected to participate in Achieving the Dream, a national student success initiative. In 2011, the Chronicle of Education honored CCBC as one of only 26 community colleges across the nation named “Great Colleges to Work For.”

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