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New Scholarships Will Help Queer Women Learn To Code, In Chicago And Beyond

By Rachel Cromidas in News on May 6, 2016 6:57PM

(Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)

Queer women in tech and queer women aspiring to be in tech, take note: A new scholarship for LGBTQ-identified women to attend coding bootcamps and pursue careers in tech is now open to applicants.

The scholarship is run by the San Francisco-based Lesbians Who Tech, and meant to help people who are trying to switch careers into the seemingly ever-growing tech sector. Anyone in the U.S. can apply, and the scholarships could be used at some of Chicago's own coding schools. One in particular, Dev Bootcamp, is partnering with Lesbians Who Tech to donate $100,000 to the scholarship fund, named after lesbian tech pioneer Edie Windsor.

Coding bootcamps are expensive; a typical session costs $9,000+ for weeks of immersive, day-long trainings. The scholarship fund will cover half the tuition for at least 10 women to attend a coding school of their choice, and Dev Bootcamp's contribution will fund half the tuition costs for 10 women to attend one of their schools in Chicago, SF, New York, San Diego, Seattle, Austin or D.C. Dev Bootcamp has been a part of Chicago's coding scene since 2012, teaching groups of students with a range of ages and backgrounds how to code over 19-week sessions. In Chicago, the tuition is $12,700.

Dev Bootcamp is one of a handful of local immersive, bootcamp-style coding schools that are not necessarily affiliated with a traditional college or university. They include General Assembly, which teaches coding for web development or user experience design, and Mobile Makers Academy, which teachers mobile app development.

The number of Chicago scholarship recipients will all depend on the quality of the applicants, Dev Bootcamp spokesman Chris Nishimura told Chicagoist. And because there are no geographic restrictions on the application process, winners who don't live in Chicago could also use the scholarship to fund a session in Chicago.