Q&A: Rena Keinrath, Computer Science and Engineering

February is Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month. Comal ISD celebrates the value of CTE and the achievements and accomplishments of more than a dozen CTE programs currently being offered at middle schools as well as high schools.


Meet one of our CTE teachers, Rena Keinrath, who teaches Computer Science and Engineering at Hill Country College Preparatory High School (HCCPHS).


What makes Computer Science and Engineering a valuable field for students to consider for their future?  


Computer Science represents the wave of the future. Coding is an extremely valuable skill that is now required for numerous 21st century occupations.


At HCCPHS, I teach Engineering and Computer Science. Both of these classes are extremely valuable as they both provide marketable skills that students can use to work their way through college.


Why are CTE courses a great option for students?  


These CTE courses are a great option. In the Computer Science classes, two of them are AP classes that provide a boost in GPA and college credit upon passing the exam. You can learn a valuable skill. Many of my students this semester have created awesome and elaborate websites. 


What’s the best lesson or skill you teach in your classes?  


I think the best skill that I teach in both Engineering and Computer Science is to be a critical thinker and use logic skills to approach new and unknown problems. Perseverance is key. By taking the first class, you can quickly determine if either of these fields work for you.  


How do you make connections with your students? 


We work in groups and teams and I rotate through the teams, collaborating together and asking higher-level questions to find solutions. All of the students are supportive of their team members and together we decide where to take the projects, rather than having a prescribed outcome that limits their potential.


In your opinion, what is the best part of teaching?   


In my opinion, the best part of teaching Computer Science is helping provide students with a marketable skill. I love my students and truly look forward to coming to work and getting to know each and every one of them. The students and staff at HCCPHS are all quite amazing! I am blessed to be able to work in such an awesome environment every day!