January CodePath Update From CEO, Michael Ellison

In 2022 I’ll be posting regularly to keep our partners and supporters in the loop re: CodePath, as well as broader discussions and trends at the intersection of race, income equality, and technology. A good place to start is a review of highlights from last year.

Below is a quick look at the significant progress CodePath made in 2021 towards our goal of diversifying the nation’s most competitive technical roles in the next 10 years.

Growth:

  • Partnered with 72 colleges and universities, a 177% year-over-year increase from 2020.
  • Provided over 10,000 students (61% of which identify as low-income or underrepresented minorities) with comprehensive, rigorous CS courses at no cost. 
  • In 2021 CodePath was featured on CBS This Morning, CNBC, Cheddar, Fast Company, and Fortune, with ambitious plans for brand recognition and thought leadership in 2022. 

Impact:

  • Our students exemplified tech excellence, with 85% of Black/Latinx CodePath alumni now working in tech as software engineers.
  • Since 2018, CodePath course completion rates have increased from 56% to 79% in 2021
  • Achieved our first geographic-focused grant for ecosystem impact through The Knight Foundation, who invested $2.25M in CodePath to expand our programming at Florida International University (FIU) and launch new programs at Florida Memorial University (FMU) and Miami Dade College (MDC).
  • Building on our ecosystem impact work, CodePath expanded computer science course offerings at four CUNY campuses: Queens College, Hunter College, College of Staten Island, and City College of New York

Team

  • Welcomed industry leaders as board members and advisors in 2021, including Gabe Aul – VP, Reality Labs Engineering at Meta and Kristen Titus – Executive Director at Cognizant Foundation.
  • As always, our team’s proprietary LMS platform and deeply technical program staff are at the heart of our success. We’re starting to see the benefits of these investments as we scale creating a cost per student that is 20-40x less than comparable nonprofits with far more student engagement, curriculum rigor, and personalization.
  • Grown from 5 to 20 Full Time Employees in the past year with key leadership hires including COO Dana Ledyard, former Managing Director at Girls Who Code and VP, Strategy at Catalyte. 

Also in 2021, CodePath launched the Summer Internship for Tech Excellence (SITE) program to address a key component in the lack of minority and low-income presence in technology – access. More specifically, early access to coveted internships at tech companies. This program was a major success with regards to both CodePath’s overall impact metrics and earned revenue strategy. While some students are still interviewing, nearly 86% have already secured their junior year paid internship opportunities.

Last but certainly not least, in 2021 we were awarded significant funding from Blue Meridian Partners to help us scale. BMP identified CodePath as one of a small number of nonprofits that could create a massive systemic change in the United States over the next 5-10 years in the areas of racial equity and economic mobility.

Looking forward to 2022, there is a lot to be excited for. CodePath aims to grow our student population by at least 50% from 2021, serving over 7,500 in 2022. This will be accompanied by increasing quality, as our team believes in ensuring our courses and services improve as we grow. I am also very enthusiastic about opportunities for ecosystem impact this year, building on our work with Knight Foundation in Florida, as well as other strategic partnerships to help us support communities of URM CS students nationwide. 

Feel free to share this post with anyone you feel might be interested in collaborating. I sincerely appreciate your support and encouragement this past year – it is a big reason behind CodePath’s current momentum. If there is anything I or my team can do to support your work, don’t hesitate to reach out. 

Looking forward to staying in touch and working together in the new year. 

Best, 

Michael Ellison

Founder & CEO, CodePath