MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - A Memphis organization that educates and mentors Black students and adults is one of nine organizations that will receive millions of dollars in grant money from the NBA Foundation.
CodeCrew’s Executive Director and Founder Meka Egwuekwe says there’s already a plan for how the Memphis-based computer science program will use its portion of the $3 million grant they received from the NBA Foundation.
“This grant opportunity is designed for the adults, to get young adults into jobs as software engineers,” said Egwuekwe.
The NBA Foundation aims to support Black communities and generational change which is why they’re investing in programs in cities where their teams are based.
“Just thankful that they trust us to execute on the vision of the MBA foundation of black youth, economic empowerment,” said Egwuekwe.
Ninety percent of K-12 students in CodeCrew are Black, and 80% of adults taking CodeCrew courses are Black.
Grants help to keep the cost of enrollment low for adult courses compared to college courses.
“They actually pay that after they graduate, they land a job, they pay back a small amount every month, over a two or three-year timeframe,” said Egwuekwe.
Thanks to the grant from the NBA Foundation, a group of young adults in CodeCrew will also receive career-building training with The Collective Blueprint, another organization in Memphis.
CodeCrew has seen graduates go on to work with companies across the U.S. and this grant will help them see that success rate continue.
“They’re averaging about $51,000 a year salary once they’re placed, they were averaging about $15,000 a year in annual income before they did our program,” said Egwuekwe.