Inspiring and training the next generation of computer scientists by engaging Club youth and teens through CS First.
Since 2014, Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Google have partnered to sponsor the Code Corps initiative, created to support the development of computer science programs in local Clubs. The goal is to inspire and train the next generation of computer scientists, specifically minorities and females, by engaging Club youth and teens through CS First, Google’s online computer science curriculum. The classes are developed around themes of interest to youth and incorporate video instruction and Scratch programming to enhance skills in coding. Since its inception, the curriculum has reached more than 850,000 students worldwide.
The Corporation for National Community Service (CNCS) is an essential part of this partnership, providing full time VISTAs (Volunteers in Service to America) to lead the initiative in communities, impacting over 40 local Clubs. VISTAs recruit and manage CS First volunteers, train local staff in computer science instruction, and develop partnerships to build sustainability for each organization.
Since the inception of the partnership, BGCA has served more than 10,000 students, achieving over 80,000 hours of coding. Code Corps is reaching underrepresented populations in computer science with nearly 68 percent of program participants at Clubs being either of African-American or Hispanic descent. Additionally, female Club members make up almost half of CS First participants, in contrast to only 18 percent of women nationally who receive degrees in computer science.