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So You Want to Learn How to Code?

One of my absolute favorite things to do is volunteer for programs that encourage young women to be leaders in the classroom and community. Being a volunteer for organizations such as Black Girls Code, have provided me an opportunity to collaborate with other women who share the same passion for youth leadership development. The most recent workshop at King College Prep introduced girls, ages 7 - 17 to virtual reality, using Unity 3D to create their own game.

Parents are encouraged to return to the workshop early in order to see the students present the projects they have worked so hard on. Every now and then, we get questions from parents hoping to continue working with their daughters on the mastery of various coding languages. However, some parents also want to know where the adult classes can be found.

One single mother recently inquired, hoping to restart a mission she started years ago. In her note, she admitted that her determination to learn was simply not enough to help her in a fast-paced community college course. The benefit of living in a city like Chicago is the number of available resources for this mom and anyone else with an interest in technology.

Here is a very short list of recommended resources to help you give your tech skills a boost:



  • General Assembly - General Assembly is a pioneer in education and career transformation, specializing in today’s most in-demand skills.

  • icstars - Since 1999, i.c.stars has been identifying, training, and jump-starting technology careers for Chicago-area low-income young adults who, although lacking access to education and employment, demonstrate extraordinary potential for success in the business world and for impact in their communities.

  • Actualize (Formerly: Anyone Can Learn to Code) - the only coding bootcamp that exclusively hires Lead Instructors who have professional experience in both education and software engineering. Your Lead Instructor is your guide and mentor during the 12 weeks of Live Training, and will directly teach you every concept that you need to know to become a software developer.

  • Girl Develop It - Girl Develop It is a nonprofit organization that provides affordable programs for adult women interested in learning web and software development in a judgment-free environment.

  • Chicago Women Developers - A weekly event gives ladies a space to code together. Whether you're just getting started, or are a veteran in the tech world, there's a seat for you at the table. BYOL: Bring your own laptop.

  • ChickTech (Chicago) - ChickTech is a nonprofit organization committed to increasing the participation of girls and women in STEM while creating a culture of inclusion for all by organizing local conferences, hands-on workshops and mentoring support for K-12 and professionals to boost participants’ sense of belonging, interest, and self-confidence in technology and engineering.


Online Tools

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Upcoming Events

Blue|1647 - Intro to Python Programming - REGISTER Click Here For More Classes

BDPA Chicago Chapter - Program Meeting - REGISTER Click Here for More Information About BDPA

What are your recommendations for men and women on a mission to master coding and improve their tech skills? Please leave your tips in the comments below!

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