Today, we at Siegel Family Endowment joined Code.org, College Board, CSforALL, Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA), and the Hispanic Heritage Foundation in the launch of a new coalition dedicated to expanding access to, and participation in, computer science (CS) for Hispanic students in education and workforce pathways during CS Week. The Hispanic CS Coalition has chosen social impact PR and advocacy firm, Whiteboard Advisors as the agency of record.
The coalition aims to generate a deeper understanding of barriers to participation in CS education among Hispanic learners, advance research on best practices, create programmatic solutions, and recommend policy interventions with the potential to increase representation of Hispanics in CS. “Growing up as a student of color in Queens, I know first-hand the many barriers that diverse learners face throughout our K-12 systems – and despite all the progress we’ve made in recent years to combat these challenges, I also know that there’s still so much work to be done when it comes to creating true equity in education,” said Katy Knight, Executive Director. “As demand across STEM-related skills continues to grow, we’re honored to join this coalition and help bolster its efforts to ensure Hispanic learners have equal access to the curriculum driving our workforce forward, particularly in computer science.”
The coalition’s approach of collecting and examining evidence about the unique challenges facing Hispanic students from aligns with Siegel’s own approach. “Research makes up the backbone of our grantmaking process at Siegel Family Endowment, which is why we’re excited to join this coalition and further explore the many barriers that face Hispanic students in computer science. In doing so, we aim to enable ourselves, as well as our philanthropic peers, to make better informed investments that support the expansion of CS education across all communities,” said John Irons, Senior Vice President and Head of Research.
The coalition comes at an important step towards creating the conditions for Hispanic students to fully access and build the future. “As our world becomes increasingly digital, access to computer science and STEM education has become a crucial building block for success in the innovation economy,” said Josh Elder, Director and Head of Grantmaking. “With Latinx students vastly underrepresented throughout these fields, we must do more to build equitable pathways that connect diverse learners with the computational thinking required to thrive in today’s workforce.”