Today we are incredibly proud to announce that 30 America On Tech (AOT) alumni have received more than $140,000 in scholarships from the Meringoff Family Foundation, SparkYouth NYC, and the New York Community Trust. We are so grateful to these foundations for supporting our students as they continue to pursue degrees and careers in technology.
America On Tech Announces Major Collaboration with STEM Prep Schools to Advance STEM Learning for Students in Special Education
Today America On Tech (AOT) announces a new partnership with STEM Preparatory Schools (STEM Prep), a not-for-profit organization that operates public charter schools in Los Angeles, California. AOT is a not-for-profit organization that provides curriculum development, support and professional development to schools throughout the United States. Through the implementation of AOT's comprehensive curriculum, this strategic alliance will support 21st century learning for students with disabilities at STEM Prep in 9th and 11th grade through STEM learning labs. This work is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Charter Students with Disabilities Pilot Community Initiative. Ninety-one percent of the students served in this pilot community of 10 CMOs are Black or Latinx, and 83% live in low-income households.
According to a report by the National Center for Learning Disabilities and Understood, 1 in 5 children in the U.S. have learning and attention issues and only 20% of students with disabilities nationally score at proficient levels on state assessments. Further, on average, fewer than 70% earn a high school diploma within four years.
The strategic alliance between AOT and STEM Prep will continue over the course of three years and will take AOT’s current digital media and web development curriculum and adapt it to the needs of students enrolled in STEM Prep’s special education program. The year-long digital media course will be adapted for 9th grade students and the year-long web development course will be adapted for 11th grade students. Each course will have a strong focus on targeting an increase in ELA and Math skills and will provide accommodations to ensure the success of student learning.
“America On Tech is committed to ensuring that students from underrepresented backgrounds have a fair shot at competing for 21st century opportunities. This means that avenues must be created for students with special needs and we know that more can be done to leverage their unique talents and potential. We’re very excited about this partnership and cannot wait to work with STEM Prep and the Gates Foundation," said Jessica Santana and Evin Robinson, Co-founders of America On Tech.
“At STEM Prep Schools we believe it’s not just about getting a degree but rather does that degree open a pathway for what comes next for these graduates. We will fall short of making the economic and social changes necessary to disrupt the current status quo, a system that locks poor students of color out of the job sector, if we do not make a conscious effort to expose minority students to STEM early on. STEM is the fastest-growing job sector, offers some of the highest pay, and desperately needs diversity,” said Dr. Emilio Pack, CEO of STEM Prep Schools.
Call to Action: AOT and STEM Prep are currently looking for a consultant to help with the adaptation of both curriculum's this fall. If you are interested or know someone with the skills, motivation and passion to ensure that students who learn differently have access to strong STEM learning curriculum, have them apply here:
About America On Tech
America On Tech (AOT) is an award-winning nonprofit organization on a mission to prepare the next generation of technology leaders by creating pathways into degrees and careers in technology. AOT's work has received national media attention in Forbes, CNN, TechCrunch and other publications for its resounding success in developing diverse tech talent pipelines.
Learn more: https://americaontech.org
About STEM Preparatory Schools
The mission of STEM Prep Schools is to operate a small network of high performing schools, in a targeted area of Los Angele and develop TK – 12th grade scholars into successful college graduates and professionals, through equal access and inspiration, rigorous curriculum, and a commitment to their core Values.
Learn more: http://www.stem-prep.org/
The Alumni Council is a brand new initiative launched this summer as a component of our broader alumni programming strategy at America On Tech. In June 2020 we shared an open invite to all alumni to apply to join the Alumni Council. Each applicant shared a wide range of amazing ideas on how to make our alumni programming speak to the needs of our alumni community. After a rigorous review, six alumni leaders were selected to represent the alumni community on the Council.
On June 11, 2020, America On Tech (AOT) partnered with Accenture to host a Career Day for New York City America On Tech students and alumni. This career day was centered around the concept of Design Thinking, giving our students the opportunity to learn this highly sought out skill. The career day kicked off with a welcome and introduction by Accenture Consultants who joined our 20 students and alumni by first introducing and explaining the concept of design thinking and how different teams across Accenture use this methodology on projects and client engagements.
Today America On Tech (AOT) announces a myriad of free programs we are running for youth and young adults and a $150,000 commitment towards creating economic opportunities for over 100 students across NYC this summer. AOT is not putting a pause on its mission to prepare the next generation of technology leaders. In light of recent events surrounding COVID-19, racial injustice, the economic crisis, and the Department of Youth and Community Development’s (DYCD) cancellation of Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP), we are more than ever fueled by our passion to ensure underestimated students in the communities we serve have access to equitable pathways to engage in the tech and innovation sector.
Born and Raised Brooklynites Collaborate to Bring Tech Skills to Youth This Summer in East New York and Brownsville
Today America On Tech (AOT) and Youth Design Center (YDC) (formerly Made in Brownsville) announced its partnership to bring free technology education to youth in East New York and Brownsville, Brooklyn. Through this strategic partnership, AOT and YDC will come together to run a series of programs for middle school and high school students between the ages of 12-19 years old. The program will deliver two stipend, 1-week virtual summer technology camps for students and 10 free virtual workshops for the public during summer 2020.
All lives can't matter until black ones do. This week (and the weeks that come) are not "business as usual" at America On Tech (AOT). In full transparency, it has taken us a few days to write this post because the words to describe the way we feel at the moment are not easy to articulate. We have been attending virtual and community gatherings as part of our own grieving process.
This spring, students in America On Tech’s TECH360 program learned the fundamentals of web design and development from volunteer instructors and software engineers working at technology companies based in NYC. Over the course of 10 weeks, students learned the basics of HTML and CSS, developed their professional skill sets, and explored industry aligned coding tools. For the final project, students were placed in teams of 2-4 and provided a mock small business client brief, along with mini lessons about being a technology consultant and pitching/presenting an idea or project. Students developed a website according to their mock small business client brief and each cohort had its own competition to determine a winner. Today we are featuring those winners in our blog!
Congratulations to our student, Alexis Loveraz, was recently featured on CBS New York for his work as a TikTok Math Tutor. Alexis has accumulated a following of more than 600K followers and 5.1 milion likes on TikTok.
"After friends encouraged him to post tips on algebra, geometry and chemistry on the video-sharing platform, he’s become a go-to source for students stuck in their homes, remote learning." (CBS NewYork)
Alexis is a junior at Harlem Prep High School. He is a recent graduate of our Tech Flex Leaders Program. He is a star student who has made meaningful contributions both in and out of the classroom. We want to send him a big congratulations!
Read more about Alexis on CBS here and follow him on TikTok!
America On Tech Announces Its Instagram Lives Series #AOTLIVE Featuring Tech Founders and Professionals
A few weeks ago we released some information to you all about our transition to working in a remote learning environment. Since then, we’ve been developing more resources to keep our students engaged in robust technology career development and exposure. Today we are proud to announce the launch of America On Tech's #AOTLive series - a free Instagram Live chat series featuring technology founders and professionals who will provide insight into trending technology topics.