Black Girls Code: Closing the Science and Technology Digital Divide
It is a cold, hard fact; minorities and women represent less than one percent of IT professionals in the U.S. Kimberly Bryant found herself in a unique situation as the only black woman in the room on a regular basis as a biotech engineer. After doing research, Kimberly found that the lack of minority and female presence she saw in her field was not due to the lack of interest. In 2011, she started a nonprofit organization, Black Girls Code. The lack of diversity in technology is largely due to the lack of access. Poor minority communities are less likely to have computers available in the classroom, while higher income bracket schools, lack teachers who teach technology-based curriculums.
The program gives girls access to subject matters such as STEM fields that include robotics, mobile app development, coding, and more. In just two years, the organization has grown to a worldwide program. Black Girls Code reaches as far as South Africa. Next year the organization plans to expand to eight additional cities.
Black Girls Code, targets girls aged seven to seventeen, instilling a love for science and technology at an early age. As of today, the program has reached over 2000 girls worldwide and is rapidly changing the face of the next generation of IT professionals. As the organization continues to grow, Kimberly’s hope is that minority girls will no longer feel like they are the only one in the room.