In the past few weeks, protests around the world have continued to educate us on the systemic racism that is prevalent in our country, and present across all industries and sectors. This week, we want to shine a light on a group of amazing Black Wyncode graduates and hear from them, in their own thoughts and words, about what it means to be Black in tech.



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What are the benefits of being Black in the technology sector?

Some of the biggest benefits of being Black in tech is being able to build trust with Black founders and create meaningful software that impacts real lives in communities of color.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

Some of the major challenges are constantly having to prove that you deserve to be in the industry. In the private sector, oftentimes founders try to pay you a cheaper rate, much more often than your white counterparts. I have been denied access to certain engineering jobs and was told I wasn’t a good “cultural fit.” In larger tech companies, Blacks will usually not be promoted to decision-making positions. We usually aren’t seen as valuable enough to sit on any of the executive boards of the same tech companies that claim to stand for Black lives. Being Black in tech mirrors the experience of being Black everywhere else.


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What are the benefits of being Black in the technology sector?

We bring a lot of different perspectives to the table and unique ways to solve user problems that companies have dealt with for years but were not able to even scratch.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

Not everyone thinks like you. Knowing which battles are worth it is key to your growth.

Any additional thoughts you would like to share?

I’m such a laid back, positive, reserved person. But the #BlackLivesMatter movement has reignited a flame in me that has become dim over the years: my exact perspective, my particular experience, my specific input matters and no one can be a bigger advocate for what you represent more than you can.


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What are the benefits of being Black in the technology sector?

The benefits of being Black in the technology sector are that you learn so much about leading yourself with integrity. I’ve learned so much about speaking up for myself, and about ethics in the workplace, and how to be a better human from other Black professionals in the space. Being Black in technology means constant innovation in how we engage other people, and ourselves in order to communicate new ideas and visions of the future.

Self-care, discussions about toxic masculinity, and advocacy work are not the type of conversations that were often brought up in some of my prior professional positions where I felt the most isolated and vulnerable. Having worked in companies that ran on archaic business models and made no consideration of these ethical issues, I know firsthand how these toxic environments can create ecosystems intolerant of satisfying innovation.

It wasn’t until I came to tech that I encountered people who had a deep desire to innovate in ways that not only focused on the tools we used but the relationships we have to each other as members of a shared society.

It’s a privilege to be a Black professional in tech and have a role in making sure the new ecosystems we build around technology do not perpetuate the long-established systems of inequities of the past. While the job of living in a seat of privilege is difficult at times, it’s one that I know is well worth my occasional discomfort. Being Black in technology is being confident in your capacity to exhibit grit in the face of life’s challenges, and knowing you have a long, and strong history of champions to rely on as inspiration for the next steps you take as you aim to bring value to your community.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

The challenges of being Black in the technology sector are numerous but stem from the same issue. The issue of classism and a lack of economic leverage has created a very frustrating and precarious environment to navigate. Even with education and a modicum of success, a Black professional in the tech space still finds themselves experiencing inequities in how they are treated and valued as members of their society.

As a Black professional in tech, often your experiences and those of your community are invalidated because someone else doesn’t find value in the problem you trying to solve. Accessing the significant amounts of capital necessary to be able to invest in our communities in a way that can herald the type of transformation we want becomes nearly impossible in that type of climate.

As someone who came into the tech space for not only professional fulfillment but with an entrepreneurial desire to build products that utilized tech to enrich communities, I was always taken aback by the culture of reproach I encountered when proposing tech solutions that were inspired by my desire to solve problems in the Black community.

I was told numerous times by well-meaning fellow entrepreneurs, that building a solution to help the Black community was too small of a market, and in a world where access to capital from friends and family is scarce for Black tech entrepreneurs you find yourself in a position where you must compromise your values, and put your community 2nd at practically every turn in order to achieve success in a world that doesn’t want to hear about your solutions if it also means they must hear about the problem.

I came into tech after working at a startup that propelled itself to a 3.35 billion dollar acquisition on that back of 7 years of doing “unscalable” things in the name of doing the right thing by their customers. These “unscalable” actions endeared them to their customers and were lauded by the tech and startup ecosystem. Being Black in technology is knowing that the opportunity to do the “unscalable” in the name of doing the right thing by your community is not as marketable when Black lives are involved.

It’s hard being Black in technology because to be successful you always feel like you have to make a choice between being an advocate and solution builder for your community, and not making the people around you uncomfortable, even when your only intention is to build a coalition of people who desire transformation in your community just as much as you do.

Being Black in technology is a challenge because even when you don’t want to bear the torch of advocacy, and when you’d rather indulge in the vain and frivolous joys of life, you still bear the responsibility of being the person who must “show up” because of how loudly your silence can become complicit in the invisibility of others.


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What are the benefits of being Black in the technology sector?

I think a lot of organizations are turning to Black talent in order to infuse their services and platforms with a more nuanced and progressive perspective. These are practices that broaden the appeal and reach of these products - and create new opportunities for Black technologists and thinkers.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

Although the notions of inclusivity and industry representation are becoming more and more prevalent in our national dialogue, I feel that we still have a long way to go before Black tech professionals can truly see themselves as “at the table”, so to speak. We’re making great strides, though! :)


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What are the benefits of being Black in the technology sector?

I believe a benefit of being Black in the tech sector is having the opportunity to represent Black people in an intelligent and futuristic way.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

Personally, I do not find any challenge of being Black in technology. The technology sector and the people who gravitate around it are mostly impartial and kind people. Speaking from my experience with Wyncode and Tech jobs.


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One of the biggest benefits of being Black in the technology sector is that we offer different, fresh perspectives in tech. Coming from an underrepresented group in tech, we serve as the bridge of opportunity and expansion for our direct communities. We are able to fill the noticeable void by creating platforms and software specifically for the Black community.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

The biggest challenge of being Black in the tech sector, in my opinion, is facing the common stereotypes in the tech community. Pair that with being a Black WOMAN, it seems we have to do considerably more to prove our true worth and knowledge in the tech industry.

Any additional thoughts you would like to share?

We NEED more Black representation in tech! Not out of desire, but out of necessity.


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What are the benefits of being Black in the technology sector?

I don’t think there are many benefits to being Black in tech. Not sure how to answer this question.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

The challenges of being a Black man, in tech, are vast and wide. I’ll speak from one viewpoint I think is important. From the time you think about becoming involved with tech, as a Black male, it’s a challenge. Mainly because there’s literally no one that looks like you. Black men likely don’t have tech role models, so it’s harder to become inspired and want to get involved in tech.

Being a Black male, as well as an athlete, I’ve only had athletic role models. When a person saw anything good in me, it was almost always catered to my physical gifts; never my mental gifts. The barrier for Black men is to become interested in technology despite being a dominant physical presence, in our everyday world. Defy the odds, change those physical reps into mental reps. This field is obtainable! We can do this!

The challenge is to see beyond our physical prowess and more into our mental creativity. There’s so many opportunities in tech that I was never aware of; so many ways to make money; so many ways to reinvent and so many ways to lift yourself by your own bootstraps. I’ve been fortunate enough to not have dealt with the typical racial rigors at my first, and current workplace in tech. Racial rigors I’ve experienced in the past, have not been an issue for me currently. This has allowed me to learn and develop at an even higher rate than normal. They took a chance on me and they won’t regret it.

This topic of trying something new is something I really wanted to discuss, and I’m sure there’s more. But in this, I want to be clear. That coding is not hard, there’s no crazy math, and no hidden doors when it comes to knowing code. Just come in and show that you can create, lead and inspire.

To tech companies, I say be progressive and give Black men and women a chance to grow in tech. We’ve blossomed in every other field when we’ve earned or been given an opportunity.

Any additional thoughts you would like to share?

I’d like to see a more conscious effort to get the Black community involved in technology. Tech conferences in inner city neighborhoods. More tech visibility for Black youth.


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What are the benefits of being Black in the technology sector?

In this moment a huge benefit Black people have in technology is the platform that the Black Lives Matter Movement has created around elevating Black voices to challenge the colorblind systems we face in our companies, colleague groups, personal relationships and communities. I use that platform now to challenge our non-black allies to do their part in raising awareness around issues that marginalize black folx. Get involved by following Black Activists pages and sharing content, attending a protest, making a donation, supporting a Black-owned business, contacting your local officials and requesting change, and by Speaking Out! There are endless ways that being Black can benefit technology, but right now, we should ideate on which ways technology can benefit people who are Black.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

There are many challenges Black folx face in Technology, from the coded language like “Slave/Master relationships” used in Programming to the predominately white cities like Seattle, Austin, and San Francisco that Technology leaders occupy, there is little opportunity for Black voices in technical spaces.

According to CNBC, the top 10 Tech companies average less than 5% of Black Hires; pair that with the 7% of Black students that attend the Ivy League campuses those companies recruit from and it becomes clearer why there is a lack of diversity in the technical sector. Insensitive language, proximity, qualification, and representation are only a few external challenges that being Black in technology comes with and doesn’t compare with the internal challenges like impostor syndrome or racial performance burnout in underrepresented workspaces.

Any additional thoughts you would like to share?

Listening to the stories of BIPOC isn’t enough anymore, it’s time to actively do the work of building a better system that serves us all; but we cannot if we are too afraid to talk about race. Start here, “So You Want to Talk about Race” by Ijeoma Oluo; A fantastic read to encourage conversation.


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What are the benefits of being Black in the technology sector?

The benefits of being Black in the technology sector are being able to contribute a unique, empathetic perspective to organizations and spaces, involving the development of product and process that impact communities. Although the Black experience is not monolithic, there are shared experiences an insights that I take pride in representing. Furthermore, I am aware that any progress that I make contributes to the progression of Black people who work alongside me but mainly for those who come after me.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

The challenges of being Black in the technology sector are everything a space/industry that historically and presently has had little to no representation of you involving departmental teams, leadership roles, speakers at conferences, meetups , etc. The subtle effects of structural racism becomes more apparent as a Black individual attempts upward mobility in whichever industry that they are in. With this you end up dealing with people who are innately uncomfortable with your presence, of which you are aware of. Most may respond by attempting to code-switch which could involve reducing one’s inherent aura, amplifying your efforts or acting out any behavior that you believe is needed to placate the situation, even though you know you shouldn’t have to be doing any of this is the first place. Distress can be a result of keeping up this behavior in which one can develop develop a disproportionate set of physiological effects negatively impacting one’s health chronically.


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What are the benefits of being Black in the technology sector?

I don’t think there are any benefits to being Black in technology outside of the benefits that are available to all technologists of all races. A career in tech affords one the opportunity to work in ways that shape business, healthcare, education, travel and leisure, and social justice to name just a few. Technology impacts every section of our lives. This can bring wealth and job security which benefits anyone who successfully navigates the tech industry.

What are the challenges of being Black in the technology sector?

While I can’t speak for all Blacks in technology, I have observed that the challenges of being Black in technology are the same as the challenges of being Black in America. Systemic racism permeates everything in our society, including the workplace. So, it would be difficult to discuss all of the challenges I’ve witnessed in one paragraph.

One issue that is always at the forefront of my mind is the lack of diversity. I work for a company where the entire executive team is white and mostly male, which is true of many tech companies. This lack of diverse voices cannot be a good thing. Furthermore, it creates a cycle. For example, young adults of color in the nascent stage of their careers, may not even consider a job in tech. This is not because they don’t want to, but because there aren’t many people who look like them in the industry. As a result, it may never occur to them that they can be a technologist. So, they choose a different path, hiring managers continue to hire people who look like them, and diversity becomes non-existent.

Any additional thoughts you would like to share?

I think that one of the ways that Wyncode can continue to contribute toward change is by partnering with HBCU’s (e.g. Florida Memorial University) similarly to the partnership the school has with Lynn University. Also, by hiring Black instructors and Teacher Assistants. I recognize that this last suggestion could be challenging with the lack of diversity we currently see in the industry. However, what better place to train these individuals than at Wyncode?



At Wyncode, we are incredibly proud to see this group of technologists grow in their respective careers. As we read their thoughts on representation in the industry, we can’t help but think that they themselves have become Black role models in tech.

To our contributors: we stand with you, and we commit to continue making tech education more accessible for Black students as well as having more representation of Black technologists within Wyncode itself.

We encourage Black alumni and students, as well as allies to join us and share their experiences in our upcoming Lightning Talks that will precede our Unite & Fight Hackathon. The stories told during the Lightning Talks will inform the Hackathon, which will center on using technology to design and build applications that provide education, resources, and training to combat racism. This Hackathon will be continued by a regular weekly meetup and will culminate in the judges’ presentations in September 2020. If you are interested in participating, please register by clicking HERE for the Lightning Talks and HERE for the Hackathon.