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Administrators at historically Black colleges are patiently awaiting passage of President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better agenda, with hopes that the bill’s record funding for HBCUs and their science and tech students on a path to further success. They believe the proposed funding level in the Build Back Better bill would make their school more competitive and improve job prospects for students. The package – if passed – would provide $3 billion for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, or STEM, programs at minority-serving institutions. It comes at a time where dozens of companies

At POCIT News, we’re always trying to make life simpler for our community, and that’s why we’ve created a list of Black Programmers and technologists who are inspiring the next generation of innovators. Let’s begin. Sofia Ongele She’s a 20-year-old coder, student, and activist. Back in 2016, she attended Kode with klossy, a summer program and organization dedicated to teaching girls aged 13-18 how to code. In turn, she learned the ins and outs of web development, and learning to code has since opened countless doors for her, taking her to

A few days ago, I got an email regarding a Black-led, Gen Z fintech startup providing income-constrained individuals with investment opportunities. The release said the company, run by a 22-year-old and 25-year-old duo, had just announced their Series A investment round. This – of course – immediately caught my attention because I’m eager to highlight the achievements of young people in tech, but I was even more ecstatic when I saw the figure – Sheridan Clayborne and Mitchell Jones had managed to raise a whopping $18million in their fundraising round.

Kela Ivonye is trying to solve the tech diversity issue through his new organization and micro fund, Protégé. After all, it was the connections he fostered as a founder, coupled with his determination and supportive network that led him to a successful exit from his innovative mailbox company Mailhaven Inc. in 2019. Now he’s using his experience, expertise, and knowledge to help Black entrepreneurs succeed by connecting them with Super founders for mentorship and investment. He co-founded the platform, a nonprofit and micro fund, to cultivate community among black founders in

Of course, the closure announcement was a big shock to everyone since Disha had reportedly bootstrapped to more than 20,000 users and had claimed to have a monthly growth rate of about 100 percent. No one expected this would happen, but as with most startups – resources are a significant problem, and a lack of them can mean great companies fall through the gap. The Nigeria-based platform allows digital creators to curate, sell digital content, create portfolios, and receive payments from their audience globally. This is a  $100 billion economy.

A new initiative from the Greater Augusta Black Chamber of Commerce Foundation hopes to help Black start-up owners navigate starting a small firm, with a new program providing training and grants of $3,000 for 25 Augusta area entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurship training program already has several business owners hoping to participate. The 25 initial participants will go through four weeks of training and six weeks of coaching, learning everything from record-keeping and insurance to marketing and risk management. According to Yahoo, it’s funded with $125,000 from Bank of America, partnering with the Greater Augusta

A 17-year-old student at Iowa City West High School has invented color-changing sutures to detect infection and is now set on getting it patented. Working with an eye on equity in global health, Daisy Taylor hopes that the color-changing sutures will someday help patients detect surgical site infections as early as possible so that they can seek medical care when it has the most impact. Daisy began working on the project back in October 2019, after her chemistry teacher shared information about state-wide science fairs including the Science Talent Search

Black Lives Matter (BLM) co-founder Opal Tometi has urged the tech sector to take robust action against perpetuating racism in systems such as facial recognition. “A lot of the algorithms, a lot of the data is racist,” U.S. activist Tometi, who co-founded BLM in 2013, told Reuters on the sidelines of Lisbon’s Web Summit. “We need tech to truly understand every way it (racism) shows up in the technologies they are developing,” she said. Her comments come just a day after Facebook announced it was shutting down its facial recognition

The technology industry’s academic and professional spaces have a long reputation of exclusivity and discrimination that has led to an industry that is predominantly all white and male – but some people are working hard to change this picture. POCIT sat down with Rose Robinson, Executive Director of Center for Minorities and People with Disabilities in IT (CMD-IT), for an in-depth conversation on the barriers facing people of color with disabilities in tech. Robinson has more than 25 years under her belt. Her role at CMD-IT means she can use

A Chicago startup that uses AI to help people better leverage their professional network is part of the newest cohort of startups selected as part of the Northwestern Mutual’s Black Founder Accelerator program. 4Degrees, led by CEO Ablorde Ashigbi and CTO David Vandegrift, will receive a $100,000 investment as part of the 12-week program. It will also work alongside Northwestern Mutual and its accelerator partner gener8tor to help grow its business. The company, launched by Ashigbi and Vandegrift, two former investors at Pritzker Group Venture Capital, back in 2017 was

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