Many major businesses and icons in Silicon Valley are joining together with a new non-profit, named Code.org, to bring more computer science classes to schools. Some big names supporting the project are Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, and Jack Dorsey (of Twitter and Square fame). The project was started by Hadi and Ali Partovi in an effort to bring more qualified programmers and engineers to the evergrowing tech industry.
Many big names, including the three above, shot a promotional video to illustrate the fun and beneficial aspects of coding. Drop Box’s Drew Houston, Miami Heat’s Chris Bosh, various Facebook engineers, and more discuss their love and passion for coding and why more people should learn it. Will.i.am, who also makes a cameo in the video, makes a good point when he says that everyone depends on technology to communicate or bank, yet “none of us know how to read or write code”.
Many tech companies find it difficult to discover qualified programmers and software engineers in the U.S. Only 1 out of 10 students know how to code, which is shocking to them because there are “millions of jobs” out there for people with coding knowledge. The job market is wide open for people who are able to market those skills. Because of the current lack of workers with tech qualifications, Silicon Valley plans on making a case before the House Judiciary Committee in Capitol Hill to provide more visas for foreign workers who have degrees in math or science.
Code.org hopes to rally up enough support in order to prepare students for the future. The tech industry is always growing, and companies need more and more workers capable of bringing them to the next level. By teaching students how to code, the folks in Silicon Valley believe that they’re creating “the wizards of tomorrow”. This effort is similar to the efforts in New York City, where Mayor Bloomberg just announced that 20 schools will be taking advantage of their Software Engineering Pilot program.