No Course? No Problem. Fremont High School Student Creates Own AP Course, Thousands Enroll

Washington High School in Fremont has a lot to offer its students: plenty of activities, and lots of caring teachers.

It had everything Moksh Jawa was looking for in a school when he enrolled as a Freshman.

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Marisa Matluck

Everything, that is, except one thing: an Advanced Placement Computer Science course.

"I was like yes this is the course I need to take," Jawa said. "I get to Washington High School and I found out the course isn't there and immediately I'm really disappointed."

Jawa, now a Junior at Washington, had started getting interested in computers in middle school and really wanted to dive into the subject in high school.

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No one, though, to let a lack of a formal course stop him, Jawa bought a textbook and taught himself the course.

"I figured my way out through it and I took the test in May and I got a 5 on it which is the highest score, so that was really exciting for me."

It is what Jawa did next, though, that has been exciting for so many others. Jawa thought his friends at school could benefit from all his work, so he started teaching the material after school to roughly thirty of them. But when scheduling conflicts made it hard to find a time they could all get together, Jawa didn't let that stop him either.

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Getty Images

"I saw an opportunity there and I started to try to build out an online course myself," Jawa said.

Decoding AP Computer Science, hosted on the Udemy website, is the free course he created and, it turned out, it wasn't just his friends who were interested.

In a little over a year, more than 4,000 others have enrolled in the course, many from around the world.

To think that someone in South Korea is studying AP computer science and using my course is you know crazy," Jawa said.

It has been such a hit Jawa has followed up by writing his very own textbook for the course. In a few short years, Jawa has become an expert at teaching high schoolers about computer science and, apparently, teaching the rest of us about overcoming obstacles.

"Whatever interests you, whatever problem you know makes you think oh I can do something about it, just go out there and do it."

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