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Blacks In Technology Foundation Scholarship Program

The Blacks In Technology Foundation and Udacity are awarding 150 scholarships in 2021! Join us to change your career and change the way the workplaces of the future look.

How It Works

Udacity and the Blacks In Technology Foundation, in collaboration with corporate and government partners, will fund 1,000+ Nanodegree scholarships to members of the Black community interested in transitioning to or furthering their careers in tech in 2021. In the first cohort, we will be awarding 150 full Nanodegree scholarships to empower individuals to learn in-demand tech skills in Programming for Data Science with Python, Product Management or Cloud DevOps Engineering.

Scholarship recipients will complete a portfolio of real-world projects that demonstrate mastery of highly sought-after skills. Plus, they will have the opportunity to engage with Blacks In Technology Foundation's network of Black tech professionals and participate in a vibrant Udacity student community.

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Today’s Big Problem

The Blacks In Technology Foundation and Udacity have teamed up to solve a critical problem: Black people are dramatically underrepresented in the tech industry, which comprises some of the highest growth, most in-demand careers. The statistics are sobering:
  • Black people make up only 3% of employees in the top 75 Silicon Valley tech companies, compared to 24% of the total workforce.
  • Black people hold less than 3% of cybersecurity jobs and are paid 33% less than White employees.
  • 20% of computer science graduates are Black and Latinx, but they only make up 6% of the tech industry overall.
  • The unemployment rate for Black individuals exceeds 10% and underemployment estimates exceed 30%.
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Our Solution

Udacity and the Blacks In Technology Foundation are committed to closing the divide between the numbers of tech jobs available and the number of Black people working in tech. That starts with ensuring a robust pipeline of trained, talented Black tech professionals. Together, we are offering:
  • 1,000+ Nanodegree program scholarships for Black individuals to build practical, in-demand, cutting-edge tech skills.
  • Exposure to the Blacks In Technology Foundation community and network of Black tech professionals.
  • Professional development and career resources support.
  • Subject matter experts and on-demand tutors.
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Scholarship Timeline

  • Applications Accepted: March 1st, 2021 - April 13th, 2021

  • Challenge Winners Announced: April 21st, 2021

  • Challenge Course: April 26th, 2021 - June 25th, 2021

  • Scholarship Winners Announced: July 12th, 2021

  • Scholarship: July 15th, 2021 - December 8th, 2021

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About the Blacks In Technology Foundation

Blacks In Technology is a global platform for Black people in technology, and the Blacks In Technology Foundation is the largest community of Black people in the technology industry. Through community-focused activities, events and outreach, BIT is "Stomping the Divide" by establishing standards for world class technical excellence. BIT serves members through community, media and mentorship, providing resources and guidance and challenging members to establish new standards of innovation.

Learn more about Blacks In Technology.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the “Blacks In Technology Foundation Scholarship Program”?
    The Blacks In Technology Foundation & Udacity are partnering to provide 1000’s of Free Scholarships to help increase educational and professional opportunities for the Black community. The first cohort of 2021 is for 150 free Scholarships with applications opening in March of 2021. We want to help close the skills gap for the Black community and increase diversity in tech roles by creating a pipeline of qualified candidates in desirable fields such as Programming for Data Science, Product Management & Cloud DevOps Engineer. The Blacks In Technology (BIT) Foundation’s goal and mission is to “stomp the divide” between Black workers and the greater tech industry. The intent is to fundamentally influence and effect change at both an individual and systemic level.
  • Who can apply?
    Anyone 18 years of age and above is encouraged to apply. Scholarship recipients should be prepared to invest about 3-5 hours per week during the Challenge Course and about 5–10 hours per week during the Nanodegree programs.
  • What are the prerequisites?
    Programming for Data Science with Python:
    There are no prerequisites for this program, aside from basic computer skills. You should feel comfortable performing basic operations on your computer (e.g., opening files, folders, and applications, copying and pasting).

    Product Manager:
    No prior experience with Product Management is required. You will need to be comfortable with basic computer skills, such as managing files, using third-party online programs, and navigating the Internet through an online browser. You will also need access to a video camera on a computer.

    Cloud DevOps Engineer:
    In order to succeed in this program, you should have basic skills in any programming language. You should also feel comfortable with the command line and using Github.

    Additional for Cloud DevOps Engineer:
    In some programming language, you should feel comfortable doing the following:
    Defining functions
    Using loops and conditional statements
    Working with various data structures

    In the Command Line, you should feel comfortable:
    Navigating through folders and files
    Running scripts from the command line
    Installing packages

    In Github, you should feel comfortable:
    Creating and cloning repositories
    Making commits to a repository

    Additional Resources
    If there are skills you'd like to brush up on, you can find the following free courses on Udacity
    Intro to Python
    Command Line Essentials
    Git and Github
  • What is the program language?
    English is the language for the Challenge Courses and all Udacity Nanodegree programs. Subtitles are available in English for all three tracks. The scholarship student community will be managed in English.
  • Where does the program take place?
    The program takes place 100% online. Students can work from wherever they want to, as long as they have a working internet connection.
  • How does this scholarship program work?
    The scholarship program is structured in two parts:

    Phase 1: Challenge Course
    1,000 Blacks In Technology Foundation Scholarship applicants will be selected to participate in a Challenge Course. During this first phase of this scholarship, students work through one of the three initial Challenge Courses that comprise of course text, content and quizzes (no projects) for the Programming for Data Science, Product Management & Cloud DevOps Engineer Nanodegree programs over the course of 2 months. Applicants should be prepared to invest about 3–5 hours per week during this period. Challenge course recipients participating in this initial phase of the program will engage with classmates in a robust, actively managed, student community.


    Phase 2: Nanodegree Program
    150 students from the first phase will earn a follow-up scholarship to either the Programming for Data Science, Product Management or Cloud DevOps Engineer Nanodegrees programs. Access to these Nanodegree programs includes expert project reviews, mentorship and community support. These full Nanodegree program scholarships will be awarded in July 2021. Applicants should be prepared to invest about 5–10 hours per week for the 5 months of the program. Scholarship recipients participating in this initial phase of the program will engage with classmates in a robust, actively managed, student community.
  • Can I apply to more than one track?
    Applicants must choose their preferred track and can only apply once. Make sure to select the one you are most interested in but also fully qualified for.
  • When will the results be announced? When do classes start?
    Applications Accepted:
    March 1st, 2021 - April 13th, 2021

    Challenge/Phase 1 Winners Announced:
    April 21st, 2021

    Challenge Course:
    April 26th, 2021 - June 25th, 2021

    Scholarship/Phase 2 Winners Announced:
    July 12th, 2021

    Scholarship:
    July 15th, 2021 - December 8th, 2021
  • Are there specific class hours when students need to be online or can they go through the lessons and study whenever they want?
    After class starts, participants can study on their own schedule as long as they complete the course in the predefined time. That is to say, they will have complete access to the course directly in their classroom 24 hours a day. We understand that students have different schedules and will work on their course at different times and on different days. What’s important is that students make constant progress each and every week and get through all the content before the end of the course.
  • What are the technical requirements for participating in this program?
    Udacity’s full technical requirements are listed here.
  • What are the criteria for being selected as one of the 1,000 Challenge Course participants?
    Udacity will evaluate the scholarship applications with a view to selecting recipients who possess:
    • Self-identify as Black / African American
    • Willingness to dedicate sufficient time to scholarship
  • What are the criteria for being one of the top 15% (150 seats) and hence a recipient of a full Nanodegree program?
    Of the 1,000 Challenge Course recipients, 150 will be selected for the follow-on Nanodegree program based on:
    • Successful completion of lessons, videos and quizzes in the Challenge Course
    • Participation in Community events and support of your classmates in the Slack community
    • All the selection criteria used in Phase I
  • What are the Terms & Conditions?
    The full Terms and Conditions are posted here.
  • Do scholarship recipients have to pay anything to participate?
    No! The program is completely free to all scholarship recipients. The Blacks In Technology Foundation pays the costs from a central budget.
  • Who will manage communication with the participants and support them during the scholarship program?
    Udacity will provide participants with all necessary information during the scholarship program. This will include everything from announcement emails after Udacity reviews applications, to ongoing student encouragement emails to scholarship recipients, to next step details at the end of each stage, and more. Emails will come from: scholarships-support@udacity.com or support@udacity.com.
  • I have more questions!
    Please submit your questions to us using this form.