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Increasing Diversity in Tech - 6 Resources for Underrepresented Groups


Increasing Diversity in Tech - 6 Resources for Underrepresented Groups

October 18, 2018

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It's no secret that Tech has a diversity problem. According to a study done by Fortune, black professionals hold only 5% of the jobs at large tech companies and Latinx professionals hold about 7% of the jobs. Black and Latinx founders also receive less than one percent of venture capital.

In researching this piece, we were discouraged to see that support and resources are also not up to the mark. While many programs aim to help students from underrepresented groups succeed in tech, the same sort of support for young professionals and people looking to make a career change are far from readily available. Likewise, further training and mentorship for underrepresented groups currently working in tech are hard to come by.

That said, there are some great organizations out there striving to foster ethnic, gender, and cultural diversity in the world of tech. Here are a few of our favorites.

For Community and Learning...

Code2040 - 2040 is the start of the decade when the minority population will together make up a majority in America. This organization specifically supports Black and Latinx students who want to have successful careers in tech. The organization offers a summer fellowship as well as a "Tech Trek," an all-expenses-paid trip to Silicon Valley to meet other aspiring technologists and tour top tech companies.

Other great organizations that help students and young professionals connect and learn include Black Girls Code, #YesWeCode, and TechInclusion.

For Reading and Resources...

Career Contessa - This website is full of resources to help women take charge of their careers, both in and out of the tech field. The site has articles, advice, downloads, checklists, and all sorts of free content to help women get better contracts, better benefits, and better career opportunities for themselves.

Other useful online resources include Blacks in Technology and Black Enterprise.

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

For Membership...

Hispanic IT Executive Council - HITEC works to advance the role of Hispanic professionals in information technology leadership. Members get access to exclusive content such as a member directory and a career board. Members also get to attend quarterly HITEC Executive Summits and get access to mentorship and executive development programs.

Other great societies available to specific underrepresented groups in tech include the American Indian Science and Engineering Society, the National Society of Black Engineers, and the National Minority Technology Council.

For Conferences...

She++ - This non-profit organization wants to rebrand what it means to be a technologist by encouraging women and other underrepresented groups to pursue careers in computer science. She++ offers fellowships, has a college ambassador program, an puts on events throughout the year for both high school and college students. The organization's core event is a summit held every year on the Stanford campus.

Other great conferences and event organizations worth looking into include BlackFounders, Wonder Women Tech, and Black & Brown Founders.

For Competition...

Level the Coding Field Hackathons - Presented by the Level Playing Field Institute, these hackathons are specifically for students in eighth, ninth, and tenth grade who are from groups that are underrepresented in tech.

Great hackathons for college students to check out include HBCUHacks and WHACK.

For Funding and Acceleration...

The Techstars Foundation - A nonprofit division of the international accelerator, Techstars, the Techstar Foundation offers grants of $10,000 to $50,000 to nonprofit organizations "that are increasing diversity in entrepreneurship."

Other organizations that help minority-led companies take off include NewME and DigitalUndivided. Google also offers scholarships for underrepresented students interested in tech.

Hero image: Photo by NESA by Makers on Unsplash

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