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Wyncode x Knight Foundation scholarship gives tech opportunities to underrepresented individuals
Written by Jocelyn Caster on 4th April 2017, 1:42 AM
Wyncode Academy, South Florida’s leading coding bootcamp that has educated over 400 individuals, has announced an expansion of a scholarship program to Miami-Dade County residents from traditionally underrepresented groups in the technology sector, thanks to a generous grant from the Knight Foundation.
Recipients of the Future Leaders of Tech scholarship will be selected by leading South Florida Tech companies and then enrolled in Wyncode’s award winning ten-week programming academy in the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami. Following the course, recipients take part in a three-month paid internship with a local power-player in the tech community. The internship is rife with hands-on learning and mentorship experiences, with the goal of landing a full time job.
Who’s taking part?
So far, six companies have stepped up, asserting their dedication to creating a future where technology careers are open to people with backgrounds and identities that have been traditionally underrepresented. The companies participating include CareCloud, Clutch Prep, DVLPER, Kipu Systems, Trim Agency, and Watsco Ventures.
The grant was awarded with the intention to increase diversity in the Miami innovation ecosystem, create further awareness of the importance of diversity in the Miami startup and tech community, and to produce role models that serve to inspire others from underrepresented communities. These are all goals that align with Wyncode’s core mission.
Who exactly is the program helping?
Wyncode and the Knight Foundation first announced The Future Leaders of Tech Scholarship in 2015. The scholarship opened the door for individuals such as Jenee Washington to re-invent themselves.
“The hype is real!” Washington said. “Going to Wyncode has truly been one of the best decisions of my life. Aside from the awesome, intense course, the people are what make it so amazing. All of this wouldn’t have been possible for me without the Knight Foundation, and I am forever grateful and ready to make Miami proud!” Before Wyncode, Washington worked as a waitress and now works at Wix, a leading website-building company that serves clients around the world.
Another scholar, Henry Arbolaez, had been working at an auto parts company in Hialeah for five years. He had been trying to learn to code on his own, to little success, before attending Wyncode. “I had always had an interest in tech but the barrier to entry was high. Thanks to the belief that Wyncode and the Knight Foundation had in me, I was able to make a better life for myself and my family. Now, the sky’s the limit,” Arbolaez said. He now works as a full stack developer at Haku.
Why change a good thing?
Many previous scholarship recipients, however, faced unique challenges. Many saw their progress stall when they had to return immediately to their old jobs to support themselves financially. Wyncode worked with leading tech companies to create the internship as a way to mitigate this common challenge. Now, students can more seamlessly transition into a paid role. They will hone in on their skills immediately after the program, getting hands-on experience working on a development team.
Ready to support Miami’s next Future Leader of Tech?
There is still room to have additional companies take part in the program. And, we invite all members of the community to contact Wyncode for more information about hiring from the program.
Support for Wyncode Academy is part of Knight Foundation’s efforts to invest in Miami’s emerging innovators and entrepreneurs. The Knight Foundation has been experimenting with digital technology and new grant-making concepts to connect with innovators worldwide.
To apply for the next Future Leaders of Tech scholarship, visit www.wyncode.co/futureleaders Wyncode’s next cohort begins April 24th and will have two scholarships available followed by one scholarships in all remaining 2017 cohorts.