Infosys Foundation USA has Awarded Grants to Five Non-profits Which Facilitate Youth Access to Computer Science Curricula in Celebration of Computer Science Education Week 2015
SAN FRANCISCO, CA, Dec. 8, 2015 /CNW/ - Infosys Foundation USA today called for the inclusion of a comprehensive computer science (CS) curriculum in all public schools in the U.S. so that students - especially women and those belonging to under-represented minorities - have equal access to develop the digital tools and skills that will be demanded by the market in the near future.
To achieve this, and in celebration of Computer Science Education Week 2015, the Foundation awarded five grants to non-profits across America. In addition, it will host more than 10 computer science boot camps nationwide this week. These grants will support extracurricular events and digital learning programs focused on under-represented groups such as low-income, Hispanic, and Native American, among others. The recipients of the grants include Code.org, Level Playing Field Institute, Hispanic Heritage Foundation, DonorsChoose.org, and Resilient Coders. The Foundation also launched a new school support program with Tynker targeting high poverty schools.
Vandana Sikka, Chairperson, Infosys Foundation USA, said, "Every school child - regardless of color, economic status, or gender - should have access to curriculum that provide adequate learning resources in computer science to open their minds to the many possibilities that our digital world can offer. All our partners address a very real and immediate need to provide these opportunities. But to scale this in the long term, we need a deeper commitment from the private sector and a significant policy shift."
Code.org: Infosys Foundation USA will be a lead supporter of Code.org's Hour of Code campaign during Computer Science Education Week 2015. This event brings tens of millions of students an hour of coding education - often their first exposure to coding - to build upon through future in-classroom education. Support from Infosys Foundation USA will also help Code.org expand its successful middle and high school teacher training programs and launch a new high school course, intended for Advanced Placement, to increase participation among females and African American and Hispanic students.
Hadi Partovi, CEO and Co-founder , Code.org, said, "We're grateful to partner with Infosys Foundation USA to help millions of students to start learning computer science with one Hour of Code. Thanks to their generous support, we're better able to create inspiring learning experiences for students, scale them to every country in the world, and prove that the power of creating technology yourself knows no bounds."
DonorsChoose.org: Infosys Foundation USA launched the first DonorsChoose.org program in support of CS-projects in Native American schools. It also introduced a new maker project grant nationwide as well as extended its existing CS-project matching program across the country. These grants will benefit more than 20,000 students in 300 schools.
Charles Best, Founder and CEO, DonorsChoose.org, said, "We are thrilled to have the continued support of Infosys Foundation USA to help further our mission of making sure that children in every community have the tools and the experiences needed for an excellent education. Funds from the Foundation will be used to pioneer a program that will provide Native American students with opportunities to learn computer programming. Additionally, we will be building upon the success of the Infy Maker Awards to help students across the country become technology makers and innovators."
Tynker: Infosys Foundation USA will donate Tynker classroom licenses to 1,000 classrooms, supporting 30,000 students from high-poverty schools across the nation. For more information on how to apply, visit the website.
Krishna Vedati, Co-founder and CEO, Tynker, said, "Learning to code is a crucial 21st century skill, but it remains largely inaccessible to many low-income students. Thanks to a generous offer from Infosys Foundation USA, we are proud that Tynker will be able to offer our premium programming courses and creative platform to 1,000 classrooms in high-poverty schools across the country at no cost. These students will develop programming and computational thinking skills, which will empower them to become makers and creators."
Hispanic Heritage Foundation: Infosys Foundation USA will team up with the Hispanic Heritage Foundation to organize two Coder Summits. These summits will convene hundreds of Latino programmers across four eight-week student trainings and eight one-day boot camp-style coding classes. These will be part of the Code as a Second Language (CSL) initiative across Atlanta, Dallas, New York, San Jose, Chicago, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., and the greater Los Angeles area. These grants will benefit more than 1,000 students nationwide.
Emanuel Pleitez, Chair, Hispanic Heritage Foundation, said, "Driving the CSL initiative is the belief that all youth deserve access to technology-focused programs and the opportunity to be inspired and prepared for tech careers, which will ultimately help America move forward as a more innovative and inclusive workforce. We applaud Infosys Foundation USA's leadership and shared vision with our organization."
Level Playing Field Institute: Infosys Foundation USA will support the Fairness Matters Forum, hosted by Level Playing Field Institute at Twitter HQ, to help close the gap in CS access and opportunity in under-represented communities.
Resilient Coders: Infosys Foundation USA will team up with Resilient Coders to celebrate CS Education Week with a one-day expo at the Museum of Science in Boston. More than 100 young people are expected to participate.
These new grants come shortly after the announcement of four others to Girls Who Code, CodeNow, ScriptEd and Level Playing Field Institute.
Separately, Infosys Foundation USA completed the inaugural cycle of the Infy Maker Awards, launched earlier this year to celebrate and support Makers. The winners will be announced on December 15, 2015 at http://www.InfyMakers.com. The upcoming winter cycle of the awards will begin in early December.
About Infosys Foundation USA
Infosys Foundation USA is focused on bridging the digital divide in America by supporting high quality computer science education and coding skills with a particular focus on under-represented communities. It aims to give children and young adults the skills they need to become creators, not just consumers, of technology. In pursuit of this mission, in 2015 alone, the Foundation has partnered with many internationally acclaimed non-profits and institutions like Code.org, New York Academy of Sciences, DonorsChoose.org, and the CREATE Lab at Carnegie Mellon University. In addition, Infosys Foundation USA recently committed a million dollars to the Infy Maker Awards to inspire makers across the U.S. to demonstrate creative excellence in making projects with genuine impact.