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Our 2016 Summer Intensive program is in full swing!

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Our 2016 Summer Intensive program kicked off on July 11, 2016! Of the almost 500 applicants, 80 talented and driven boys were selected to join us this Summer.  Now in our third year of operation, we’re proud to have our biggest class in what’s geared to be our best Summer so far!

All Star Code believes that young Black and Latino boys should have a fair shot to be able to be successful in all spaces, especially in technology, a sector estimating over 1.4 million jobs by 2020. We have a great lineup of host site partners, speakers, company visits, and a challenging curriculum to keep our boys engaged throughout the summer. With our innovative approach of not only delivering computer science instruction, but also giving these boys industry exposure, we are fostering entrepreneurial talent and investing in the next generation of tech leaders.

All Star Code is once again hosting a cohort of 20 boys at Alley, our inaugural host site in 2014. We are thrilled to have cohorts hosted at Goldman SachsGoogle, and MLBAM, who are all new host site partners this year. These are some of the most innovative companies in New York City who have teamed up with All Star Code to send a clear message about the necessity for diversity in tech.

We also want to thank our funders, because, without them, none of this would be possible. AT&T has grown their support this year and is the lead funder for the 2016 Summer Intensive. We are thrilled to collaborate with them throughout the summer and invite AT&T employees into the classroom to speak with our students. Additional funders include Reginald F. Lewis Foundation, Goldman Sachs, Cognizant Technology Solutions, Dentons, Panorama, MLBAM, Google, and the Linux Foundation. Our partners and funders help to fuel our mission and keep it alive, as we continue to grow.

As our students go forward through this world, and obstacles arise in school, the workplace, and beyond, we want them to embody the mindset that they can accomplish anything they put their minds to. We are building a world where every young man has the confidence to dare greatly, the safety to celebrate failure, and the freedom to tell his story.

By the end of this Summer Intensive, our boys will have the skills, networks, and mindset they need to create new futures through technology. Live the mission with us and follow our All Stars on their journey. Follow us at @allstarcode on both Instagram and Twitter to get live updates on what is going on at each host site.

-Team All Star Code

 

Our Alumni are off to College!

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All Star Code recently celebrated the accomplishments of our graduating seniors with a college send-off event. During the evening, we learned that more than 60% of the students will be attending top 50 universities in the United States. Graduates will be attending Columbia University, Duke University, Harvey Mudd College, Howard College, Stanford University and NYU just to name a few. Additionally, our graduating seniors have received over $500,000 in scholarships and financial aid.

The evening, hosted at Christina Lewis Halpern’s residence, was filled with excitement and gratitude. All Star Code is extremely proud and eager to support our young entrepreneurs who are already pioneering into this new world.100% of our alumni who are graduating seniors will be attending college.

This year, ASC alumni will be attending the following colleges all around the country and continuing their journeys in becoming the next generation of tech leaders:

Boston College

Bucknell University

Columbia University (4)

Cornell University

Denison University

Duke University

Hampton College

Harvey Mudd College (2)

Howard University

Ithaca College (2)

LaGuardia Community College

Lawrence University

Lehigh University

Long Island University

Marist College

New York University

Queens College

Rochester Institute of Technology

Stanford University

The University at Albany, SUNY (2)

The University at Albany, SUNY (Honors College)

The University of Maryland, College Park

University of Virginia

Williams College

Yale University

Spotlight On ASC Alums: Volume 1

DevonDevon Howell
Age 16
Rising Senior
Bronx High School of Science, Columbia University Class Of 2019

​ASC. Looking back, what was the most valuable thing you learned at the
ASC Summer Intensive?

​DH​. I learned that failure IS an option, so long as it is a springboard for success. I am defined by failures only in the sense that they have added experience to my life.

​ASC​. What tech related activities are you up to now?

​DH​. I am involved in an organization called The Young Hackers. My job is to organize mentors and workshops during our hackathons. I make sure that everyone who needs help gets it.

​ASC​. What piece of advice would you give to the next cohort of All
Stars?

​DH​. Always challenge yourself. If you’re not struggling, you’re likely not learning. Taking on challenges give you valuable experience and an indescribable sense of accomplishment.


EricEric Razor
Age 16
Rising Junior
Academy for Software Engineering

​ASC​. What was your favorite part of the ASC Summer Intensive?

​ER​. My favorite part of The ASC Summer Intensive was networking. I got to meet so many incredible people like Michael Lisovetsky and Jason Marmon, who have a real estate startup called Skylight (Check it out!) I also loved team building every Wednesday with my fellow All Stars. I got to know so many different lives. ASC truly changed mine.

​ASC​. Looking back, what was the most valuable thing you learned at the
ASC Summer Intensive?

​ER​. The most valuable thing I learned at The ASC Summer Intensive was to ask. Along with coding, learning to ask is the most powerful tool you have. One of our speakers, Avi Flombaum of The Flatiron School, was really good at emphasizing the need to struggle. Struggle leads to asking good questions. You never know until you ask.

​ASC​. How did ASC help you find or create your current opportunities?

​ER​. I would have never been able to do what I can do now without ASC. I am a lot more curious. I ask a lot more questions. I want to know why things work the way they work. I tackle problems more slowly. I ask for help. I refuse to give up.


AustinAustin Carvey
Age 16
Rising Junior
High School for Math, Science, and Engineering at City College

​ASC​. What was your experience with coding and tech prior to participating in All Star Code’s workshops and Summer Intensive?

A​C​. Before All Star Code, I completed one Javascript course. The course gave me a high level understanding of many coding concepts, but no real experience with how to implement them, and no real hacking philosophy either.

​ASC​. What tech related activities are you up to now?

A​C​. I co-founded a collective called The Young Hackers with my fellow All Star, Mamadou. We plan hackathons for other high schoolers. Since our inception, we have had four very successful hackathons and over 400 happy hackers in attendance. Most of our fellow All Stars have been involved one way or another as well. I’m also taking AP Computer Science at my school, but it’s been a breeze for me. So I enjoy helping my classmates with their assignments so they too can learn the joy of hacking.

​ASC​. How did ASC help you find or create your current opportunities?

A​C​. All Star Code introduced me to hackathons, and gave me the drive and the team to start The Young Hackers. The algorithmic thinking I developed at the Summer Intensive made my AP Computer Science curriculum really simple to understand. I can break down complex problems into simpler ones and solve those quickly, ending up with an effective solution. All Star Code ignited a fire in me, which has inspired me to create projects outside of school, and keep that joy alive.

The Year Ahead

February brings a cold snap, but our team is humming to begin our 2015 Summer Intensive recruitment drive. We are thrilled that hundreds of people from parents, teachers, school principals and elected officials are clamoring for their youth to be included in our groundbreaking programming.

Personally, I want to highlight some of our most exciting developments moving into 2015.

We’ve had over 76 young high school boys of color participate in our all-day workshops, which we use to generate awareness and interest in our 6-week Summer Intensive program. Over 60 tech professionals have served as mentors to our boys, helping them deepen their knowledge of coding and the careers in the tech industry. And nearly 40 tech companies, schools and organizations have joined our ecosystem as community partners – ensuring that our students receive industry exposure, training, mentor support, and educational resources.

After exposure to our workshops, mentors, and community partners, over 95% of our boys, when surveyed, stated that our program led them to consider strongly pursuing a tech career path.

Our pilot 2014 Summer Intensive is now a proven success, with an independent research firm confirming that we have increased our students technical skills, entrepreneurial confidence and desire to pursue a career in the technology industry. All 100% of our graduates last summer are now planning to pursue a tech-related career post-program, and 95% are now strongly considering a career in computer science. We feel these results are extraordinary, and we’re excited to share our story with the world as we expand in 2015.

Based on these successes, we are now investing significant time and resources into formalizing our Intensive curriculum. Our Intensive is a scalable program, but curriculum investment is required to make it replicable.

We have great plans for the Intensive this year. By the end of 2015, we plan to have graduated at least 60 students through our Intensive program. For context, only 68 African American students passed the AP Computer Science exam in New York State last year, with a passing rate of 33.8%. Our work can make meaningful change in our space.

Most excitingly, our first class of All Stars is doing extremely well. Our students have attended numerous coding events on their own, including Penn Apps, a monthly event at Spotify, and My Brother’s Keeper Hackathon in Philadelphia. One of our students won a $1,500 prize at a Hackathon organized by our community partner Digital Undivided. They are also very actively participating in a shared Facebook group.

Two of our students have even created their own organization, the Young Hackers. Austin and Mamadou, both 16, met during our Intensive and decided to organize a Meetup for high school students. With support from our instructors and team, they ran a hugely successful hackathon for 100 students hosted by our site sponsor, Alley NYC. Six months later, the Young Hackers have partnered with numerous coding education programs, including our curriculum partner, Flatiron School, to run events.

Giving motivated but disconnected students the skills, network and exposure to integrate into the technology sector is at the crux of our programming. And we are gratified to see our unique curriculum and approach bearing fruit so soon.

On the other hand, several of our students have not been able to participate in some fantastic opportunities because they could not afford the travel costs to the event. We have many more good stories to share as our alumni take flight, but we are also mindful that our program must be a multi-year commitment. To truly be an ecosystem of access, we must secure new funding so that we can continue to support our All Stars. Soon, they’ll be able to find employment at technology companies, and start supporting the next generation of All Stars in return.

Christina

PS. On the personal front, my husband and I welcomed our baby daughter Sasha to the world in November. She is providing joy to us and a lot of amusement to her older brother. Bringing forth a new life to the world grounds me and reminds me that while we should remember and learn from the past our eyes must stay on the future, because that is where our potential lies.

© Natalie Keyssar 2013 for All Star Code. All rights reserved.