Meet Our Mentors – Sherman Leung

Sherman Leung

Sherman is a junior at Stanford studying Computer Science. He is a terrific programmer with a lot of experience through coursework, personal projects, and as an engineering intern at GoDaddy. Sherman is also a section leader in Stanford’s first CS class, resulting in a lot of practice teaching programming fundamentals. He has been working with an advanced 12 year-old student since the summer to explore exciting CS topics like artificial intelligence!

When did you start programming?

I first came across CS in middle school in an accelerated magnet program that promoted CS education. But I didn’t really take to programming until I got to college after taking a couple introductory CS courses as a former pre-med student.

What do you find rewarding about teaching kids how to program?

Programming has the unique capability of also having a building component while you learn. The sort of capability allows me as a teacher to engage directly in the co-creation of something unprecedented. Each program and application that I write with my students provides me an opportunity to learn from them as well. Hoping to teach my students the value of subscribing to a growth mindset, I make sure to live out the same principles of pushing my own boundaries when I’m provided new perspectives and ways to learn from my students.

What is your favorite game or project you have created with a student?

My favorite project that I’ve had the pleasure of engaging with a student involved an application of AI to the game of Tic-Tac-Toe. Over the course of two lessons, we built up the basics of what an AI agent looks like in the framework of games that optimized moves and built an unbeatable Tic-Tac-Toe player that we had fun playing against.