ONE CLASS AT A TIME
Empowering kids of color to explore tech and unlock their creativity
We are Geeking Out Kids of Color. We build and sustain youth programs that are rooted in community, computer science, and consciousness. Our project-based tech curricula are informed by anti-racism, anti-sexism, multiculturalism, social-emotional learning, and decolonization frameworks. Our programs are geared towards empowering youth with the voice, digital literacy, and problem-solving skills to envision and construct new realities.
Seattle is home to some of the largest tech companies and technological growth. Meanwhile, there are distinct disparities in who has access to digital devices and learning, whose perspectives are represented in tech curriculum, whose tech instructors look like them, whose learning is most supported, who decides what types of products need to be built, and whose needs are considered. Overwhelmingly, these disparities skew towards whiteness and the cisheteropatriarchy. The resulting technologies that shape our world – from civic to education, legal, public health, and safety purposes – often serve to uphold systems and cultures of ableism, ageism, classism, colorism, racism, sexism, transphobia, and other forms of marginalization.
While the challenges are numerous, complex, and systemic, our youth programs serve to center youth of color to enable them to build technologies that only they can create. Through community partnerships, we build various types of after-school and summer programs (now virtual) throughout the greater Seattle area, from SeaTac to Vashon Island, White Center/Burien, and the Central District. With tech curriculum developers and instructors who are trained in anti-racism, anti-sexism, and socioemotional learning, youth work on projects that develop their digital fluency, computational thinking, societal consciousness, and sense of agency to enact change. We firmly believe that youth are not only leaders of tomorrow, but leaders of today, and our programs work to empower them.
Stories from GOKiC Youth
Whether working with game development with Scratch, web development with HTML/CSS, or robotics with mBot, Eyouel is always active and engaged as a GOKiC student. Eyouel has gone beyond developing technical skills to also building his sense of community, voice, and agency. Growing as a coding activist, he has brought his honest self and thoughtful creativity to our virtual sessions. Recently, we discussed civic engagement and the importance of being counted in the 2020 U.S. Census, leading up to his digital artwork that says "HE HAS A DREAM. SO DO YOU."
"I feel free when I come to GOKiC, and I get to see my friends and have fun with them. We get to make games and make them as we want them and make robots that we can control. Those are the best parts."