Originally from Los Angeles, I’m a social entrepreneur with ten years of experience at the intersection of technology, entertainment, and social activism. From producing two feature films, (one of which was selected to the 2003 Sundance Film Festival) to launching two start up tech companies to overseeing youth outreach in the Bay Area for the 2008 Obama Campaign, I’m driven, passionate, and have achieved results across sectors.
In February of this year I launched CodeNow, a non-profit focused on developing the next pioneers in technology by working with underrepresented youth to provide foundational skills in computer programming. Programming is the literacy of the future. Teaching these skills to underserved youth will give them the power to innovate and create.
CodeNow teaches high school students the basics of computer programming through free, extra-curricular, off-campus trainings hosted by community partners.
There are 5 parts to our program:
1) Weekend Training - CodeNow partners up with other organizations to hold weekend trainings. Each student selected for the program will attend one of these trainings, which will include instruction in:
-Scratch: an educational programming language developed out of MIT that allows people of any experience, background and age to experiment with the concepts of fully versatile computer programming by snapping together visual programming blocks to control images, music and sound.
-Lego Mindstorms: are programmable robotics/ construction toys, manufactured by the Lego Group.
2) Project - Each student will be assigned a project after the weekend training which they must complete to attend the weeklong bootcamp.
3) Bootcamp - Students who have attended the weekend training will be invited to participate in a 4-5 day training where they will learn the programming language Ruby.
4) Netbook- Each student who attends the weekend training and bootcamp will receive a Netbook.
5) Alumni Network- Once students have completed the bootcamp they will become part of our Alumni Network. They will receive mentoring, assistance with finding internships, and will be invited to participate in student hachathons throughout the year.
In August we launched our weekend program in DC. Working with 13 students age 15-18. In 2011 we will hold two more weekend trainings and a bootcamp over Christmas break. Here is a video from our pilot: http://youtu.be/VTCGDmYnhhM
Funded by Washington, DC (December 2011)