Education

How Christina Lewis Halpern and All Star Code Are Bringing More STEM Opportunities to Boys of Color

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Christina Lewis Halpern might not be a name you’re familiar with, but it is a name that you should know – especially with her recent notable contributions to the future of tech. The tech industry consists of a wealth of opportunities, but it is almost entirely made up of mostly white men, which has brought diversity efforts into the forefront for many big name tech companies. Halpern is doing her part to make sure that more black men are able to get their feet in the door to a world that they are absent from.

“We all want and need a seat at the table, and then we want to run the table and then we want to have our own table. Coding is the ticket to that,” Halpern said to Atlanta Black Star.

Halpern is the founder of All Star Code, a six-week course for high school-aged boys of color that seeks to help them learn more about different lucrative career opportunities through a computer science-based curriculum.

Additionally, the New York based activist is also the daughter of the now passed Reginald F. Lewis, a Wall Street attorney who was also the first black person to build a billion-dollar company. “My family foundation is committed to social justice and believes in the power of entrepreneurship and investing in our community,” Halpern relayed.

According to her website, the created All Star Code “to help the next generation of youth catch the next wave of opportunity.”

With All Star Code, Halpern sought to further her father’s initiative and shed light to the youth of today about the wealth of opportunity that is out there if they have the education. There is a void in the STEM world for men and women of color. All Star Code and Halpern seek to address that. Students exit the program with mentors, networking contacts, in addition to a wealth of software coding and web development skills.

“The problem we are ultimately solving is the wealth gap in the United States,” she continued. “The solution is to create the opportunity for people to earn money in ways that are commensurate with their talents and abilities.”

Currently, All Star Code has 95 percent of its program recipients attending four-year colleges, with 85 percent of those students majoring in computer science or a computer science-related major.

Learn more about the All Star Code initiative by clicking here.

Photo Credits: All Star Code/Website

Sheriden Chanel is a twenty-something writer, Beyoncé enthusiast, and lover of all things visual art. Keep up with her and her musings on social via @indiebyline.