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Genius at Horizon!

Ten Year 10 students at a Barnsley school have been getting expert help from a local digital design agency to develop their own app for an iPhone or iPad.

 An enthusiastic group of year ten students have been meeting at Horizon Community College with Craig Burgess and Richard Keys of Genius Division to learn what it takes to develop an iPhone/iPad app.

 Thursday fortnightly lessons focused around developing an app for the Church of the Nazarene, Oxford St. Barnsley. This will help community organisations that partner with the church better communicate. The church is a home to numerous organisations including: youth club, art group, Ward Alliance, Ward Surgeries, Royal British Legion, Crime & Safety Group, Residents Group, Latvian Group, etc.

 The students learned about design, layout, business and community applications, finance and customer engagement. Community Enterprise Leader at Horizon Community College Jayne Manley brought students, staff, programmers and Pastor Ian Newton together.

 The app contains a calendar, directions, photos, videos, live streaming of church services and information about the church.

 Ashley Clark, Strategic ICT Manager at Horizon Community College commented:

“It has been a pleasure to facilitate the project by coordinating Horizon Students and a local company who was willing to invest their time and expertise into a worthwhile community spirited project. The outcome of the project will hopefully benefit our local community in accessing the services and groups offered by The Church of the Nazarene. Students have also benefited by gaining essential skills that link to their computer science lessons - as well as seeing a real example of what they can achieve when they enter the world of work!”

 Craig Burgess, Creative Director of Genius Division said:

“It was fantastic to be asked by Horizon to get involved with this project to help younger people understand how the app industry works. A lot of people don’t even consider that there’s people out there making apps for a living, and I think that possibility excited the students. It was great to see the students begin to understand how to design an app, and how that knowledge will help them with their future work in other lessons. Our hope is that we’ve opened the eyes of the students a little bit more to show them you can make a career out of something a little more unusual, and anything’s possible if you put your mind to it.”

 The project was a great success and has inspired the pupils in to think about further applications including an updated app for their own school.

 Ian Newton, Pastor of the Church of the Nazarene, Barnsley commented that:

“It was a joy and a privilege to work with such a group of committed and creative people and see their ideas become a reality. The Church of the Nazarene is involved numerous community groups. Local people can now see with the touch of a button when the following groups meet: youth club; art group; Residents Group; Ward Alliance; Crime & Safety Group; Royal British Legion; Ward Surgeries; breakfast club, etc. Moreover, those meetings that are streamed can be watch live or later via the app. The staff and students at Horizon should be proud of what they have achieved. Likewise the dedicated team from Genius Division are equally inspiring and put in long hours outside of the classroom.”

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