What is Out in Tech?
Out in Tech unites the LGBTQ+ tech community. We do this by creating opportunities for our 20,000 members to advance their careers, grow their networks, and leverage tech for social change.
What’s the problem?
Have you ever worked in tech, or been to a tech office? Ever notice, welp, a lotta people that look the same? Us too. Research from McKinsey suggests that diversity is really good for business, with the inclusion of LGBTQ+ individuals as “a key differentiator among companies.”
We’re seeing the light bulb of understanding flicker on for more and more allies but in many halls of tech that isn’t translating into results -- particularly for queer people of color, transgender, and gender non-conforming folks. At Out in Tech Talks last spring, civil rights activist DeRay Mckesson challenged us to take action.
It’s time to debunk the flawed idea that only students from top-ranked national universities have exhibited sufficient merit to qualify for career-grooming experiences. The path to CEO begins in high school, and the subtle message emanating from Silicon Valley to queer youth is “if you aren’t at Harvard or Stanford, don’t bother.” We know that’s BS, because we’ve been working with public school students for years and they’re brilliant, bold, and determined.
Unfortunately, too many tech companies don’t have direct access to our community. By connecting the LGBTQ+ youth we serve to tech companies for their first work experience, we’re simultaneously making tech more diverse while creating economic opportunity for historically underestimated and marginalized groups.
How will we do it?
In Summer 2019, with your support, Out in Tech will connect the next generation of talented developers, designers, marketers, to some of the world’s leading tech companies. Our pilot will connect twelve (12) LGBTQ+ identifying youth to obtain (and then crush!) their first tech internship or work experience in the Out in Tech Fellows pilot program. And we won’t stop until every LGBTQ+ wanna-be techie has the same chance as anyone else competing for the most lucrative and powerful jobs of our time.
How do we plan to grow the program?
In Fall 2019, we’ll conduct a program evaluation that analyzes qualitative and quantitative survey data to better understand the program’s mutual benefit to employers and fellows -- and then we’ll come back to YOU with recommendations on how to scale. In addition to placing fellows, Out in Tech will ensure youth have the tools required to thrive in the workplace and navigate systemic issues like unconscious bias and imposter syndrome. We’ll create a global network of alumni, making even more linkages to LGBTQ+ youth seeking careers in tech.
How can I help?
You’re still reading? We knew you were good. You can help by donating to our crowdfund campaign (no amount too small), sharing the campaign on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn, and/or volunteering at a future event. Whatever you can do, we appreciate it!