ISTELive 23: Men of Color Lead the Way for STEM in Their Communities
A 2021 Code.org report notes that only 51 percent of high schools offer computer science coursework, and a 2021 Pew Research Center report shows that Black students earned only 7 percent of STEM bachelor’s degrees in 2018.
Abran Maldonado, Co-Founder, Create Labs Ventures
Norval Connell, STEM Instructional Leader, Enlarged City School District of Middletown (N.Y.)
- Abran Maldonado is an artificial intelligence expert and co-founder of Create Labs Ventures, which built C.L.Ai.R.A., the first AI of color, in 2020.
- C.L.Ai.R.A. was created with the same technology as ChatGPT to be an ambassador for black and brown communities.
- Maldonado is focused on hiring young people from urban environments and helping them build the computational skills needed to work in the technology industry.
- Norval Connell, is the science, technology, engineering and math instructional leader at the Enlarged City School District of Middletown in New York.
- Connell is the leading force behind a STEM program that is helping students build strong mathematical and computational thinking backgrounds to prepare them for STEM careers.
- Though Middletown is a high-poverty district, its leaders provide students with cutting-edge educational facilities and partner with organizations, colleges and universities to give students access to technology certifications and dual-credit programs.