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While the tech field offers high-paying, fast-growing jobs, Black computer science professionals are underserved in the field.
The Pew Research Center reports that Black people made up just 7% of the computer workforce between 2017 and 2019. Pew reported Black adults made up 11% of employed adults during the same time period.
But the interest in computer science is there. According to a 2016 Gallup poll, 88% of Black students showed interest in learning computer science that outpaced interest from white peers (80% interested) and Hispanic peers (84% interested).
The same poll reported Black students have less access to home computers or computer classes.
Institutionalized racism creates barriers to entry (lack of a home computer, as a minor example) but is not the only limiting factor at play.
Once Black students are in computer science programs issues like classmate behavior or imposter syndrome brought on by lack of representation can make Black students switch majors.
When AudienceNet and Jobs for the Future asked working-age Black adults why they never pursued a computer science or STEM-related credential, 16% of respondents cited financial concerns, and 12% were worried they would not fit in.
Several computer science organizations encourage Black students to pursue STEM degrees, and offer professional development resources for Black professionals.
These organizations perform advocacy, conduct research, and support computer science students and professionals in various other ways.
Students can find scholarships and fellowships, networking events, and job and internship resources by joining a Black computer science organization.
This page features lists of computer science, coding, and tech organizations that support Black students.
Computer Science Organizations
Several computer science organizations, nonprofits, and networks offer resources, scholarships and fellowships, and mentorship programs that can help Black students successfully pursue computer science degrees.
Black computer science majors may also find internship and job opportunities, access to professional news and publications, and advocacy efforts through the groups below.
BDPA fosters diversity in STEM and digital technology fields. This Black computer science organization helps Black students prepare for STEM careers and offers support to Black professionals in various aspects of the tech field. Black students pursuing undergraduate tech degrees can apply for funding through the BDPA Education & Technology Foundation’s scholarships program.
Code2040 works to eliminate structural barriers that keep Black and Latino/a people from participating fully in the tech industry. The group offers a fellows program and an early-career accelerator program. It also participates in media strategy and research and evaluation to bring more Black and Latino/a people into tech positions.
NACME partners with other organizations to offer scholarships, resources, and other opportunities to members of underserved groups pursuing engineering degrees. The group's goal is to create an engineering workforce that looks how America looks.
Students can use NACME's career center, search its database of scholarship programs, and find information about corporate support.
Founded by students in 1975, the NBSE supports Black students aspiring to careers in engineering and technology. The 24,000-member organization offers programs and events that support Black K-12, college, and professionals. Student members can apply for scholarships, discounted conference registration, academic support, and job opportunities.
NSBC hosts a conference that facilitates mentorship, networking, and career development opportunities for Black students seeking computing careers. Students can find conference information and apply for scholarships on NSBC's website.
The coding organizations below support Black students and professionals interested in or actively engaged in coding careers. Explore this list to find out about scholarships, mentorship programs, conferences, and learning opportunities for Black coders.
A nonprofit computer science education organization, All Star Code teaches coding to young Black and Latino men. The organization emphasizes financial independence, social mobility, and using coding to change the world and do good. All Star Code offers free weekend workshops, coding challenges, and summer intensive sessions.
Black Boys Code strives to improve opportunities for Black youth through computer science and technology education. The group teaches digital literacy and computer competence, preparing young people for tech careers. Students can find information about workshops and volunteer opportunities on the group's website.
A professional community for Black software developers, Black Code Collective offers career development and assistance. The group organizes events, maintains a job list, and operates a Slack community for Black coders to support each other.
Founded in 2011, Black Founders creates global programs that encourage tech inclusion and entrepreneurship. The group offers mentorship, funding, and advice with the goal of increasing the number of Black tech entrepreneurs. Black Founders also organizes conferences, hackathons at HBCUs, and other events.
Black Girls Code helps young women of color develop technology and computer programming skills. The organization hopes to close the opportunity gap in the tech industry for Black women. Program areas include artificial intelligence, mobile and app design, game design, and virtual reality. Black Girls Code offers one-day workshops, summer camps, code clubs, and enrichment activities.
A nonprofit group and social enterprise, Code Black Indy offers training, internal hiring, programming, and education. The organization's mission is to bring more Black and brown people into successful tech careers. Students can attend classes, demos, and camps or volunteer.
A nonprofit created in 2017, Coding Black Females organizes meetups for Black female developers that facilitate networking and relationship building. The group facilitates a mentor program, coding bootcamps, conferences, and free certification opportunities. Coding Black Females also maintains a searchable job board with coding positions.
The tech organizations below offer support and encourage current and aspiring Black tech professionals. Students can find educational opportunities, ways to connect with other Black tech workers, and career information. Some groups also provide scholarships, organize events, and publish professional newsletters and journals.
A platform and community, Black Female Founders offers support and resources for Black female tech startups. Members get business development tools, invitations to hands-on workshops and networking events, and opportunities for mentorship. Black Female Founders also raises awareness about issues facing Black female entrepreneurs.
A platform for Black women and men in tech, BIT offers members community, mentorship, and access to media publicity. Students can use BIT's website to search for job openings, listen to BIT's podcasts, and find information about events. Members can join or start a local BIT chapter in cities throughout the U.S. and world.
Black Tech Nation is a tech organization that offers funding, education, and recruitment opportunities for Black entrepreneurs and tech workers. Students can find jobs, networking events, and workshops through Black Tech Nation. The group also advocates for tech equity.
BWTT runs the largest tech conference for Black women tech entrepreneurs. The group also offers various educational programs, a job board, and investor pairing. More than 500 like-minded members support each other in BWTT's community of entrepreneurship.
The largest tech-focused community and nonprofit for Black people, BUILT International advocates for equality and equity in the tech industry. Membership benefits include discounted and free technical training, mentorship opportunities, access to private events, and opportunities to pursue leadership positions.
Founded in 2012, DigitalUndivided creates women-led initiatives and programs that spur economic growth in Black and Latino/a communities. The group also conducts research, engages in thought leadership, and runs a networking and resource center for Black women and Latina entrepreneurs.
A career accelerator for Black techies, software engineers, and executives, /dev /color serves a member community of more than 600 professionals. Members can participate in a peer mentorship program, conferences, and networking events. They can also take advantage of career advancement resources.
A national program, Dream Corps Tech strives to make the tech industry more diverse and equitable. The organization provides technical training to people from underserved groups, offers educational and professional development resources, and engages in policy work at the state and national levels to increase diversity in tech.
Started in 2012, the Hidden Genius Project connects young Black men with local tech jobs. The organization provides skills training, mentorship, and other experiences that prepare them for careers in the global tech industry. Hidden Genius offers intensive immersions, catalyst programs, on-site community programming, and support from youth educators.
An alumni venture seed fund helps young entrepreneurs launch their projects.
Created in 1996, ITSMF is a national organization dedicated to encouraging Black technology professionals. The group's offerings include leadership academies, membership opportunities, a speakers bureau, and a college mentorship program. Students can attend symposiums, virtual events, regional events, and key programs.
The ITSMF foundation awards scholarships for Black students pursuing STEM-related college degrees.
NTEN helps organizations use technology in a racially equitable way. Members get discounted access to workshops, in-depth courses, and the nonprofit technology professional certificate. They also receive a subscription to the organization's discussion forum, the chance to write for NTEN's blog, and full access to industry reports and research.
Founded in 2013, the Opportunity Hub is a technology, entrepreneurship, and startup platform that ensures racially equitable access to tech work. Opportunity Hub's holdings include an investment fund and nonprofit foundation. The organization offers many skills training programs, masterclasses, certificate programs, and various professional development events.
Teens Exploring Technology inspires Black and brown high school boys to pursue tech entrepreneurship. The group offers educational skills training, consulting, and a mentorship program. College students can apply for an internship, fellowship, or volunteer position helping teens develop technology skills.
The organization also creates a podcast and posts articles and videos on its website.
The Knowledge House empowers, educates, and serves Black and brown students who aspire to careers in the tech industry. The organization offers technical and career instruction and a fellowship program for technologist hopefuls.
The innovation fellowship program is free and open to New York City residents who hold a high school diploma or its equivalent and make less than $50,000 a year.
WonderWomenTech seeks to increase representation of women and BIPOC populations in STEAM fields. The group emphasizes access, equity, and opportunity in tech. WonderWomenTech organizes conferences, hosts speakers, produces a podcast, and offers career development resources. Students can apply for an internship or volunteer with the group.
Questions About Black Computer Science Organizations
What are the largest Black computer science organizations?
The largest Black computer science organizations include the National Society of Black Engineers, Black Data Processing Associates, and Code2040. Other major groups include the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering and the National Society of Blacks in Computing.
How can a computer science organization help me?
Black computer science organizations can help you find mentorship opportunities, apply for scholarships, and learn through professional development workshops. Joining a group is also a good way to find out about job and internship openings.
Page last reviewed on Dec 18, 2022
Computer science learning: Closing the gap. (2016). Google Inc. and Gallup
Fry Richard, et. al. (2021). STEM jobs see uneven progress in Increasing gender, racial, and ethnic diversity. Pew Research Center
Increasing opportunities for Black learners and workers within digital & IT careers. (2021). Jobs For the Future
Lawrence Keith, et al. (2004). Structural racism. Intergroup Resources
Newsome, Melba. (2021). Even as colleges pledge to improve, share of engineering and math graduates who are Black declines. Hechinger Report
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