TXT: Teens Exploring Technology
TXT: Teens Exploring Technology is an organization that encourages young black and latino males to become catalysts of change in urban communities through Computer Science.
Welcome to TXT! TXT is an organization recognized by Obama for encouraging young men of color to become catalysts of change in urban communities through computer science. First and foremost we work to end the school to prison pipeline. Currently 1 out of 3 black boys and 1 out of 6 latino boys will go to jail in their lifetime. Our focus is to develop young boys into a new generation of community and technology leaders. We believe that our young boys are most at risk and giving them the skills of today will allow them to succeed in the 21st century.
We believe that access to technology should be available to everyone, especially low socio-economic communities. Through our curriculum we develop a culture of innovation, collaboration, and strong academics among our young men.
TXT believes the following Pillars will be the foundation of each TxTer as they strive to succeed in the program of life.
TXT is an innovative leadership program helping inner-city youth develop leadership and other skills through the use of technology. TXT is the brainchild of Oscar Menjivar -- himself a graduate of Jordan High School and Cal Poly Pomona. The idea itself dates back to Menjivar's high school days who states "the program was created to develop confident and collaborative minded young men equipped with the skills to improve social and economic conditions in their community."
As a Watts teen, Oscar was intrigued by computers and decided to attend Jordan High School for their technology magnet program. However, to his surprise not much technology existed at Jordan in 1996. Not only did technology not exist, but also very few after school programs aimed at developing young men academically. The most effective organizations in recruiting young men were gangs. Oscar saw one of his best friends fall victim to gangs and pledge that he would help create a program that can influence young men become leaders who would impact their communities in a positive way.
In 2007, Oscar and Roxanne (co-founder) worked on an initial plan. The pilot program was sponsored by ZeroDivide, a San Francisco based organization that assists low-income communities empower themselves through the use of technology.
Using computer programming as its primary focus point, pilot program participants were taught technical, leadership and other skills critical to today's workplace. For some students, it was their first real opportunity to gain experience behind a keyboard or use the tools required to develop that type of work. Menjivar summarized it by stating, "we found that lots of students we talked to did not know what a web site was, had never seen how to make a web site" and adds "but they were brave enough to try."
Today the co-founders (Roxanne and Oscar) and teenagers who believe in changing the inner cities through technology are still writing TXT's history!
TXT has been recognized by:
Los Angeles City Mayor
and many others.
We are a project of Community Partners. MORE OPPORTUNITIES