I can’t believe that an entire year has passed since Codestarter launched at Techstars NYC Demo Day last June. At our very first practice pitch to our Techstars cohort, Tom and I finished our pitch, looked at Alex Iskold, the Managing Director, to see how how we’d done. His arms were crossed, and his face was contorted into a definite frown.
But then Mike Perrone, CEO of Social Sign.In, yelled from the very back of the room, “We’re in for 5 laptops!” And then someone else called out, “Hey, what OS are you running?” And then someone else asked, “What languages are you loading on there; you’ve gotta have Python.” Everyone wanted tvcx vo know about Codestarter.
I looked back over at Alex. His frown had transformed into a slightly less dubious look of wonder. Maybe this crowdfunding laptops for kid coders thing could actually work.
As of today, we’ve crowdfunded 441 laptops for kids in schools and coding programs all across the U.S. Because of these laptops, kids have been able to participate in programs like Technovation, robotics competitions, Makerfaire, and the Verizon Innovative App Challenge. We’ve secured partnerships with Google CS First, Teach for America, TEALS, CoderDojo, and many other organizations and school districts that are working toward giving more kids the opportunity to learn to code.
Tom and I have been having a blast collaborating with our awesome team, volunteers, partners, and teachers and mentors to figure out how to get laptops in the hands of more kids. Most important to us though, are our donors. We built Codestarter, in part, because we wanted to encourage more people in tech to give back, to give other people the same great career opportunity that they have now. Every single person who has donated to Codestarter is helping to build a more robust future of tech. We’re so thrilled that you’ve chosen to become a part of our little Codestarter project, and we look forward to the rest of this summer and giving more kids the chance to create something incredible. It all starts with a computer!