By Amanda Bates | Photo by John Goldy By 2020 there will be one million unfilled jobs in the United States in the technology field alone, according to veteran software engineer and entrepreneur Mel McGee. McGee is the CEO and lead instructor of We Can Code IT, an adult education program striving to diversify the technology and engineering fields in Northeast Ohio. The idea to begin We Can Code IT gradually formed in McGee’s mind as she spoke with women after presenting at tech conferences. Very often women would ask if she would teach them to code. “It became clear that they were kind of intimidated by my male peers, so they felt more comfortable asking me,” she says. Through We Can Code IT, her goal is to fill a greater percentage of those one million open positions with women and people of color, both of which are underrepresented in STEM (Science-Technology-Engineering-Math) careers. We Can Code IT offers full-time and part-time coding boot camps, which are highly comprehensive and focused on providing the relevant, practical information students will need to find employment in the technology fields. Read more at Cleveland Business Connects Magazine.
Mel McGee was doing tech before many of today’s tech-preneurs were even born. At 12, she hooked up her family’s very first modem — one of those early kinds with a cradle for the telephone’s handset — to help her Realtor parents enter properties into the multiple listing service. She wrote her first program at about 10, a scroll of her name running continuously across the screen. Today much of her energy goes into We Can Code IT, a company she founded last year that provides coding bootcamps and workshops designed to teach programming to women, girls and minority groups typically underrepresented in technology and engineering. “We Can Code IT started because people were asking for training,” McGee says. “You follow the market. Which way is the current going?” Read more at http://ibmag.com/Main/Archive/Mel_McGee_12891.aspx
We Can Code IT Launches Coding Boot Camp for Minorities and Women Mel McGee has been a computer programmer and teacher for the past 20 years. Now, as CEO of We Can Code IT, McGee and community outreach director Shana Mysko are holding coding bootcamps that are targeted at getting women and minorities careers in IT fields.
We Can Code IT’s coding bootcamp is changing the image of computer programmers! Our inclusive efforts have been noted by many local new sources, including this article in Crain’s Cleveland Business. By CHUCK SODER Like other coding bootcamps, We Can Code IT says it can teach you the basics of coding in three months. But unlike other coding bootcamps, We Can Code IT is actively seeking out students who don’t look much like the stereotypical coder (picture Mark Zuckerberg — or any other young, nerdy white guy). That’s how founder Mel McGee planned it. One of the company’s goals is to help diversify the information technology world. “It’s not a standard coding bootcamp. We’re doing something a little different,” said McGee, who has been a web developer for about 20 years. However, it is a standard bootcamp in another way: We Can Code IT aims to turn people with little-to-no development experience into professional programmers — and help them land entry-level jobs. The $10,000 price tag is pretty standard, too, though it drops to $9,000 for women, minorities and students from households that earn less than $47,500. Read More at http://www.crainscleveland.com/article/20150816/NEWS/308169991/bootcamp-hopes-to-diversify-tech-industry
Mel McGee, CEO of We Can Code IT, recognizes a need in the community to get underserved populations the tech skills they need for new lucrative IT careers. “Engineering software and teaching technology for nearly 20 years has given me perspective. I believe nearly everyone can learn how to code.” she says. “If you have the dedication, if you’re willing to work, we’re here to teach you. Not only do you learn the most in-demand skills, we train you how to think like a developer in a welcoming, collaborative environment.” Great companies know that multiple perspectives help their teams perform better, yet less than 18% of IT teams are comprised of women, African American, and Hispanic populations. We Can Code IT bootcamps address the needs of employers who can’t find enough computer programmers along with needs of those unemployed and underemployed who need tech skills for career changes. Three of the top five most in-demand occupations are in computer programming, and there will be more than 1 million unfilled tech jobs in IT by 2020. First year software developer salaries in Cleveland average around $50,000. The average experienced software engineer nationwide earns over $90,000 a year. “It’s a no brainer,” says McGee. “Clevelanders need careers that offer financial security. Employers need software developers. The most successful companies understand the financial gain they experience when employing diverse teams.” We Can Code IT hopes to have a significant socioeconomic impact on Cleveland, a city whose poverty rate is nearly 50%. Read More at http://www.streamlinksoftware.com/news/bid/187247/We-Can-Code-IT-Coding-Bootcamps-To-Launch-in-Cleveland
We Can Code IT Launches StartMart Location for Adult Coding Bootcamps FlashStart’s 2015 startup team We Can Code IT, which was featured in Crain’s Cleveland Business this past weekend, announced a formal partnership with Cleveland entrepreneurial hub StartMart. We Can Code IT, which provides IT education and job placement to women and minorities, will be launching a second location for its adult coding bootcamps in StartMart. The partnership will match graduates of the coding bootcamp with StartMart startups in need of development talent. More details of the partnership are in the press release below. We Can Code IT Launches StartMart Location for Adult Coding Bootcamps StartMart and We Can Code IT Partner to Connect Program Graduates with StartMart Members CLEVELAND, Aug. 18, 2015 – We Can Code IT announced today the opening of a second location for its adult coding bootcamps at StartMart, an entrepreneurship hub in downtown Cleveland. The partnership will connect graduates of the We Can Code IT program with startups at StartMart that are in need of software developers. Founded by CEO Mel McGee in 2013, We Can Code IT provides education, mentoring and job placement to people who are underrepresented in computer science and engineering, including women, African Americans and Hispanic Americans. “Women and people of color are severely underrepresented in computer science, yet they earn 30% more in the field than their counterparts in other industries,” said McGee. “We offer these students the opportunity to not only learn computer programming and web development, but to do so in an unintimidating, collaborative atmosphere.” We Can Code IT offers adult coding bootcamps and computer and engineering workshops for children and teenagers at the Shaker LaunchHouse. The startup will maintain its current curriculum at LaunchHouse, but will move its corporate headquarters to StartMart. “Part of our success is that we offer job placement after the coding bootcamp,” said McGee. “Many of our students happen to be un- or underemployed, so opening this second location at StartMart gives us the most unique opportunity to offer our graduates challenging and rewarding jobs at startups.” Read More at http://www.flashstarts.com/we-can-code-it-launches-startmart-location-for-adult-coding-bootcamps/