A teacher whose name I've forgotten but to whom I am very much indebted suggested that I go to a series of lectures and hands-on sessions at the University of Oklahoma in the spring of 1971. I was in tenth grade.
On Saturdays we were guided through BASIC and the fundamentals of numerical analysis by Professor Richard Vernon Andree, and one evening a week we could sit at one of four ASR-33 Teletypes connected to a Data General Supernova running a time-shared BASIC. It changed my life. In my junior year, not having access to a computer, I wrote programs in a notebook, which I wish I still had. As a senior I took vo-tech and learned about unit record machines, the RCA 301, and then RPG on an IBM 370. I never looked back.