Editor’s note: Coalition for Queens has since relaunched as Pursuit.
Coalition for Queens (C4Q) creates pathways out of poverty through technology to transform the world’s most diverse community into a leading hub for innovation and entrepreneurship. Based in Long Island City, Queens, participants from all five boroughs of New York participate in programs designed to create alternative pathways into successful careers for people who might not otherwise have access to traditional tech industry roles or entrepreneurial opportunities. C4Q champions a diversity of perspective and background that aims to strengthen both the tech industry and the skills of those seeking greater job opportunity.
Queens County is the most ethnically diverse place on earth — almost half of the borough’s population is born abroad, and over 138 languages are spoken among its millions of residents. C4Q channels this spirit of diversity into its programs by providing training, mentorship, and access to tech resources that help all participants across the five boroughs of New York become more competitive and better equipped to engage with a global, technology-driven economy.
C4Q’s hallmark program is Access Code, a free 10-month coding program that prepares talented New Yorkers over the age of 18 to become industry-ready developers and software engineers. Participants are representative of the diversity of the NYC community, with over 50% women, 60% African American or Hispanic, 50% immigrant, and 50% without a college education. Access Code is open to participants with little to no college experience, and helps students master everything from coding fundamentals to industry best practices to interview training.
Programs like Access Code align directly with SFE’s goal of providing alternative pathways towards meaningful careers, and broadening access to industries and networks that are out of reach for many. Additionally, unlike other bootcamp models, C4Q is disrupting hiring pipelines by developing partnerships with leading companies and startups. By linking diverse talent directly to industry, C4Q is primed to lead a paradigm-shift in the tech industry by reshaping notions of talent so that more people can be part of the tech industry’s future.