My Villain Origin Story: The Reality for Latino/Black Kids In Silicon Valley
A reflection on my journey, and a call to action to support kids from underrepresented backgrounds.
“I graduated from San Leandro High School, a mere 30 miles away from the heart of Silicon Valley. In a school of 2500+ students, most of whom were Black and Latino, my high school only had 60 seats for AP computer science when I was in 11th grade. Because there were more interested students than there were seats, these seats were assigned by lottery. Students who did not get chosen would have to wait until the next academic year to sign up again. If you were in 11th grade like I was, this was your last chance to get a computer science class on your transcript before applying to college. I did not get a seat, and this affected my ability to be competitive for college admissions as a declared CS major.
I learned that schools a few miles away, where the majority of students were white, had entire CS departments. Cities like Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Berkeley, and Fremont offer their students a wide range of CS courses. I remember wondering how I could be competitive for college when I was up against kids who had been coding for years. This led me down a rabbit hole of findings where I learned of the severe lack of diversity in tech and the call for more women and people of color in the field. I knew I wanted to learn to code, but now also wanted to help more people who looked like me to have access to quality computer science education.”Posted on 2022-09-18T20:20:02+0000