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Black-owned Chicago Tech Hub Gets $500K Grant From Google For STEM Programs

Black-owned Chicago tech hub Blue1647 to receive $500K Google grant for STEM programs

It’s always great to see when organizations that give back to the youth are thusly rewarded for their efforts in a such way that they can continue to effectively pay it forward.

Such is the case with Blue1647, which we previously covered for their #ChiBreakTheCycle event.

Blue1647 is a Chicago non-profit tech hub based in the city’s Pilsen neighborhood that focuses on tech and entrepreneurship training for underserved communities.

Founded by Emile Cambry in 2013, Blue1647 has assisted in providing over 16,000 youth with resources in technology, STEM and entrepreneurship.

Thanks to a $500,000 grant from Google’s philanthropic subset Google.org, that number will expand in a significant way.

ChicagoInno reports that the new grant will help Blue1647 boost its STEM programs, including its web development workshop-based Code Chicago, Latina Girls Code and Paige & Paxton, a STEM introductory course for children.

Other programs include 21st Century Youth Project, a tech and entrepreneurship training program for teenagers and CiviBLUE1647, a civic tech and data initiative.

“We’re making it so we’re a town hall for social innovation but also a town hall for youth STEM programming,” said Cambry. “That’s really exciting for us.”

Cambry said that Blue1647 has had a long relationship with Google, and that this grant is “our chance to focus on programs, impact, and just really do some things we’ve never been able to do before.”

Speaking of growth, Cambry confirmed that Blue1647 is also partnering up with Uptake, a predictive analytics startup which will help the hub boost its workforce development and data science training.

Additionally, the nonprofit recently launched BlueFUND, a nationwide crowdfunding platform.

Finally, Blue1947 is physically growing as well. The nonprofit will be moving to a new 250,000 square-foot space in order to make room for all of its new programs.

“We want to be the place where people get started,” Cambry concluded.

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