Capital One Coders is Boosting Students’ Interest in STEM

A recent study conducted by ImpactED found that Capital One Coders is boosting students’ knowledge of and interest in STEM fields

Capital One Coders inspires students to recognize their potential as technologists by helping them cultivate a greater interest in computer science during a critical period in their development. 

According to a recent study conducted on behalf of Capital One by ImpactED, a research and evaluation center based at the University of Pennsylvania, Capital One Coders is boosting students’ knowledge of and interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields.

Since its launch in 2014, Capital One technologists have worked directly with students throughout the program to build a mentoring relationship and inspire confidence as they explore technology through design thinking and coding. 

Capital One Coders has partnered with over 120 schools and youth-serving nonprofit organizations across the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

In turn, more than 22,000 students have considered pursuing careers in computer science. 

Our programming strives to actively make computer science education equitably available to all people by focusing on underrepresented students.

  • 78% of Coders students are underrepresented minorities. 
  • 52% of Coders students identify as female.
  • Over 90% of the participating schools serve mainly low- to moderate-income students.

Since the program’s inception, Capital One associates have contributed over 140,000 hours in social impact volunteerism through this program, which has supported more than 23,000 students.

“We’re committed to using feedback from our partners to continually improve and scale our Coders program,” says Rob Alexander, Chief Information Officer at Capital One. “Seeing the outcomes from the ImpactED study, particularly the demonstrated value of our program and technologists, are encouraging and incredibly motivating. We have a huge opportunity to reach even more students through our virtual programs and I continue to be driven by our Coders vision of helping students succeed in the digital age.”

In 2021, more than 1,300 volunteers provided 26,000 hours of service, which contributed to this program being selected as the winner of the Virginia Governor's Volunteerism and Community Service Award under the Group-Corporation category — an award that annually recognizes the significant contributions of Virginia citizens to the life and welfare of the Commonwealth and its people. 

Seema Patel, an associate software engineer at Capital One, says that coaching students at Coders gave her the opportunity to help diversify the future of the tech industry. 

“People from underrepresented backgrounds too often do not have the opportunity to see someone who looks like them in STEM positions, which could make them feel like they don’t belong,” Patel said. “Seeing the students that I worked with enjoy working on their websites and wanting to work on more complex web development subjects made me feel like I was inspiring the next generation of women in tech.”

Capital One Coders is part of our broader mission to change banking for good, which we are propelling forward through the Capital One Impact Initiative

Launched in October 2020, that initial $200 million, multi-year commitment strives to advance socioeconomic mobility and create a world where everyone has an equal opportunity to prosper through advocating for an inclusive society, building thriving communities and creating financial tools that enrich lives.

“The Coders program provides access to opportunity,” said one Coders partner organization. “Mentors from Coders are always eager to help and the programming is so creative and informative. The students learn so much in a short period of time.”

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