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Why Office Tours Are A Powerful Experience To Code/Interactive’s Diverse Students?

August 17, 2016 by

August 15, 2016 — New York, NY — Code/Interactive (C/I), a computer science education and entrepreneurship nonprofit based in New York City, provides the schools we serve the opportunity to take their students on office tours at some of NYC’s most influential technology companies. In the past two years, C/I has taken over 20 high schools to over 30 career-focused office tours at such companies as Google, Twitter, BuzzFeed, and Microsoft.

2448a935-9ce9-415d-9006-8cb16aec12f0(C/I Students And Teachers From Urban Assembly School for Media Studies Visited Twitter NYC HQ)

Office tours have been an invaluable experience to allow students who are learning computer science through C/I’s curriculum to envision the possibilities and outcomes of pursuing a career in STEM.  This is especially true for high-school students from underserved communities who aren’t often exposed to the tech industry and often lack social networks that provide this information. C/I gives our students the education and inspiration to continue in their college education and career path as a computer programmer and entrepreneur.

During office visits, students gain exposure to what it is like to work in a professional environment through a tour of workstations, conference rooms, and demonstrations on how employees collaborate and share office traditions. This is then reinforced by a career panel discussion with diverse employees. Career panel discussions allow students to understand the process of becoming a technology professional, entrepreneur, or marketer.

In addition, practical career tips are offered from a company’s staff, such as the importance of networking, following up, email etiquette, resumes, and interview tips. Another vital element is the employees shared personal stories. These often focus on how the employee got to where they are now or how students can follow in their paths. Here students are exposed to an element of career readiness that can’t be learned in the classroom. Finally, the visit is wrapped up with our students showing off their coding skills by presenting some products they have developed in our classes.

Here’s what some of our student’s thought of the office tours:

“I really enjoyed walking around Buzzfeed.  It felt like home since everyone works and has fun together.  All the employees that we met have different backgrounds and stories.  I also loved the snacks,” said Melanie.

“My favorite part was the part of the tour when the employees told us what they did at Twitter and how they got interested in technology,” said Amia at Twitter’s office tour.

“I wanted to thank you for showing us that even though coding may be difficult at times, there are a lot of doors that can open up for you if you stick with it,” said student at Venmo’s office tour.

“I want to acknowledge Facebook’s employees because you made me want this job so badly.  Passion for this somehow went in me and I just want to work harder on learning how to code,” said Evan at Facebook’s office tour.

We want to thank you to all the tech companies and employees who have given our students an experience that continues to impact them on their future endeavors.

You, too, can inspire C/I’s next generation of diverse technology leaders by hosting an office tour, during Fall 2016 or Spring 2017.  Contact C/I’s Program Associate, Arlynn Rosario at [email protected] to learn more about the opportunity.   

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About Code/Interactive:

Code/Interactive. C/I is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a mission to inspire the next generation of diverse technology leaders from low-income communities. C/I equips students—male and female, from diverse ethnic backgrounds—with the necessary technical and social skills to pursue high-paying jobs in the 21st-century economy. Founded in 2001, our three scaffolded programs provide students from low-income communities with computer science education, entrepreneurial mentorship and career-readiness training.

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