The Columbus Foundation Names TECH CORPS 2019 Nonprofit to Watch

5 Nonprofit to Watch leaders (l-r): Michael Corey, Human Service Chamber of Franklin County; Lisa Chambers, TECH CORPS; Janet Chen, ProMusica; Gina Ginn, PhD., Columbus Early Learning Centers; Oyauma Garrison, A Kid Again.


Photo courtesy of The Columbus Foundation

The Columbus Foundation recognized TECH CORPS as one of five innovative Central Ohio organizations poised for an exceptional year of growth and progress during its “5 Nonprofits to Watch” event on March 19, 2019.  This program, which began in 2014, honors remarkable nonprofits in Central Ohio working to strengthen and improve the community.

The Columbus Foundation provided seed funding to launch TECH CORPS in Central Ohio 20 years ago. Leveraging that investment, TECH CORPS has educated, excited and empowered thousands of K-12 students in Central Ohio and beyond.

“As we begin to expand our work nationally, it’s important for us to continue to be a relevant and positive contributor to the community in which we are headquartered,” said Lisa M. Chambers, TECH CORPS National Executive Director.  “We are grateful that the Foundation continues to believe in and value the mission and work of our organization.”

Just a few of the exciting initiatives on tap for TECH CORPS in 2019 include developing a new High School Tech Camp focused on Blockchain, broadening our impact in Dayton, Ohio and mapping the scope and sequence of our Student TECH CORPS program to prepare high school students for a seamless transfer to a technical training program or college.

Other 2019 honorees include A Kid Again, Columbus Early Learning Centers, Human Service Chamber of Franklin County and ProMusica.


TECH CORPS Student Spotlight: Axumawite Gebreyhones

“I love how TECH CORPS gives people opportunities. TECH CORPS provides students with knowledge about technology that they probably would have never learned in school.” – Axumawite Gebreyhones.

Axumawite Gebreyhones attended a high school that had both a STEM Academy and an Arts Academy. Without having any prior exposure to technology, being part of the Arts Academy was her preferred route. But after seeing a TECH CORPS flyer at her school promoting Computing Career Corps, her journey would change course.

Axumawite became enrolled in Computing Career Corps (CCC) in 2016, and she credits the program for giving her a different outlook on technology. Through hands-on lessons and activities, CCC introduces students to a variety of in-demand occupations in the field of technology including computer programming, software engineering, robotics, 3D printing, and app development.  Students gain a solid understanding of the inner workings of technology and use their newly acquired skills and creativity to develop solutions and products.

During her time in CCC, Axumawite recalls a memorable moment that solidifies how she feels being a woman in technology. “When I coded a robot in CCC with a group of four girls, we were the first team to get it through the obstacle course. We were ALL females, and there were students in the class who took CCC before and my group had never. Knowing that at that moment in time as a minority female, being able to succeed in something in a field [that] not a lot of female minorities even try to look into was amazing!”

After completing CCC, she joined TECH CORPS’ Student WEB CORPS (SWC) program that summer. Student WEB CORPS provides high school students with a suite of web development, project management and professionalism skills and then challenges them to apply those skills in the authentic task of building a website for a mock business.

After graduating high school and enrolling in college in 2018, Axumawite was hired by TECH CORPS to serve as an instructor for SWC.

Now a freshman studying Civil Engineering at The Ohio State University, this future engineer, who previously wanted to be a lawyer, thanks TECH CORPS for opening up her mind to the functionality of technology.

“You look at an iPhone and you love how the camera takes good photos and that the screen is bright, but how does that work?” asks Axumawite.  “Same with buildings and roads. You see buildings and bridges every day, but do people really see the math and science involved behind building that bridge? That’s why I am interested in looking at what it takes to build infrastructure.”

When asked what she would say to someone who wants to pursue a technology pathway, she simply replied by saying “Always try!  How will you know if you like tech if you never tried to work with it.”
Sounds like Axumawite took her own advice and is already on her way to making her mark in technology!

Hackathon Press Release

2018 TECHCORPShack Sponsored by AT&T

Whitley Hawkins

Ohio High School Students Develop Mobile Apps to Aid in the Opioid Crisis

2018 TECHCORPShack Sponsored by AT&T


COLUMBUS, OHIO, December 4, 2018 – More than 140 high school students from Columbus, Dayton and Zanesville participated in the 2018 TECHCORPShack held on Friday, November 16 and Saturday, November 17 at Capital University (Columbus), Sinclair Community College (Dayton) and Zane State College (Zanesville).

This event, sponsored by AT&T, gavethe students an opportunity to learn about computer science in a fun, engaging and inclusive environment.

“At a TECHCORPShack students come together to learn how to use technology and team up to create solutions that can have a positive impact on the community,” said Lisa M. Chambers, the National Executive Director of TECH CORPS. “I was truly impressed with the apps the students created in such a short period of time.”

During the event, students learned how to use MIT App Inventor to develop a mobile app that helps to aid people and/or communities in the opioid crisis. Working in teams, students used their creativity to build apps that ranged from connecting the community to the cause to helping individuals seek an alternative to opioid prescriptions.

“What these kids developed in a very short time is just incredible,” said Sarah Briggs, AT&T Ohio’s Vice President of External Affairs. “We’re proud to support efforts like this, which not only create opportunities for young people to expand their technology talents, but also tackle real-world problems that Ohioans struggle with every day.”

Seven winning teams from the three regions have been invited to participate in the Grand Finale event in Columbus on December 8th.Below are the winning teams and the description of their apps:

Team Name: GuardRail
App Description: A 3-button app that helps those who are trying to resist their drug temptation and share their success with their support group.

Team Name: Liberation
App Description: Provides anonymous chatting between two people by sharing testimonies so people know they are not alone.

Team Name: Thirteen
App Description: Provides easy access to resources from home to be informed how to react to people during a drug overdose and be able to view helpful resource centers nearby.

Team Name: The Future
App Description: Connects the community to a cause and gives support to people with an addiction looking for sobriety.

Team Name: CODE: 9
App Description: A resource for those seeking alternatives to opioid prescriptions that contains entertainment, information, and helpful resources to all.

Team Name: W.H.C.Y
App Description: Targets those who use opioids and other drugs to cope with stress through education and meditation to prevent people from misusing drugs.

Team Name: A.B.B.A
App Description: Prevents potential addiction from a prescription narcotic.


About Philanthropy & Social Innovation at AT&T:
AT&T Inc. is committed to advancing education, strengthening communities and improving lives. Through its community initiatives, AT&T has a long history of investing in projects that create learning opportunities; promote academic and economic achievement; or address community needs. The company’s signature philanthropic initiative, AT&T Aspire, drives innovation in education to promote student success in school and beyond. With a financial commitment of $450 million since 2008, AT&T is leveraging technology, relationships and social innovation to help all students make their biggest dreams a reality.

TECH CORPS is a nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring K-12 students have equal access to Computer Science (CS) and Information Technology (IT) programs, skills and resources that enhance early learning and prepare them for college and career. TECH CORPS develops technology programs and deploys tech-savvy talent to assist K-12 schools and youth-serving organizations across the country. Over the years, partners such as JPMorgan Chase, Nordson Corporation, Progressive Insurance and Cognizant have provided TECH CORPS with the fuel to deliver much-needed technology resources to K-12 students and teachers. Since 1995, more than 15,000 TECH CORPS volunteers have shared their time and talents assisting schools and nonprofit organizations in their communities. TECH CORPS was founded in 1995 by Gary Beach, Publisher Emeritus of CIO Magazine and author of The U.S. Technology Skills Gap. Visit TECH CORPS on the web at, @techcorps_org or


TECH CORPS Student Spotlight: Kasey Wilson

Kasey Wilson

Columbus, Ohio native Kasey Wilson always wanted to do something technology-related. “I tend to enjoy things that are challenging and have mobility,” recalls Kasey. But it wasn’t until she saw flyers sprawled out on a table at Centennial High School, where she would discover an organization that would not only challenge her abilities, but ultimately change her life.

The flyers were from an organization called TECH CORPS, a nonprofit that develops technology programs and deploys tech-savvy talent to assist K-12 students and teachers. Intrigued by the mission of the organization, Kasey decided to look into the programs they were offering. One that she felt suited her best was Student WEB CORPS, a “summer work experience” for in-school students, ages 14-17 years old. This program is designed to strengthen students’ web development, project management and professionalism skills and to apply those skills in the authentic task of building a website for a small business, organization or cause. As someone who was looking for a summer job, Kasey decided to join this program as a student web developer in 2013. Going into the program without any front-end knowledge about technology, she was willing to learn anything needed to do the job. “I learned how to develop websites, as well as, CSS and HTML. Having instructors at TECH CORPS who were helpful and empowering made it very accessible to me that I can do anything I put my mind to.”

Kasey’s involvement with TECH CORPS didn’t stop there. Two years later, she received a call from them asking her to apply to become an instructor for the Student WEB CORPS, Summer Youth Employment Program and has been involved ever since. She now had a chance to “be an advocate for girls” who were once like her and expose them to the exciting field of technology.

While some high school students may be unsure of what they want to study in college, Kasey already had her mind set on what she wanted to do. During her last year at Centennial, she participated in the Seniors to Sophomores program, “which allows high school seniors to take college classes while in high school and enter college as a sophomore.” She then attended Ohio Dominican University and double majored in Software Engineering and Computer Information Systems. Kasey made history by becoming the first African-American and woman in the school’s Software Engineering Program. While in college, she had the opportunity to participate in the JP Morgan Code for Good Challenge, a one-day project where she worked on a team to create a model application for a nonprofit. This opened the door for her and she secured an internship with Chase’s Software Engineering Program, a chance for her to acquire new skills and develop a global network of support to advance her career. She graduated from Ohio Dominican in May 2018 and has transitioned from intern to Software Engineer at JPMorgan Chase.

Because there is not a large representation of women and minorities in technology, Kasey offered these words of encouragement to those who may be hesitant to pursue it – “You can do whatever you want. It’s not easy, but it’s most definitely worth it. Take every opportunity offered to you and take advantage of anything that will help you pursue your dreams.” Fortunately, TECH CORPS was there to expose Kasey to a world that was once foreign to her but is now familiar.

This once shy and quiet girl has blossomed into a powerful young woman in tech. She notes that it’s not about what you already know, but how willing and interested you are in learning. We agree, Kasey!

Hackathon E-blast

2018 TECHCORPShack Sponsored by AT&T

TECH CORPS, AT&T and Ohio colleges team up to educate high school students about coding and computer science.


Capital University (Columbus), Sinclair Community College (Dayton) and Zane State College (Zanesville) are gearing up to host the 2018 TECHCORPShack on Friday, November 16, 6pm-9pm and Saturday, November 17, 9am-4pm for high school students in grades 9 through 12. This event, sponsored by AT&T, will give high school students in the Columbus, Dayton, and Zanesville regions the opportunity to learn about computer science in a fun, engaging and inclusive environment.

During the event, students will learn how to utilize MIT App Inventor to explore the world of mobile app development to create an app that tackles a real-world need or problem. Students will also have the opportunity to meet and work with peers, technology professionals and advocates from their community.

Cash prizes will be awarded to winning teams in each region. Regional winners will go on to compete in the final competition on Saturday, December 8 in Columbus, Ohio. Each member of the team that wins the finale will receive $500.

To apply for this event, students should visit If you’re interested in volunteering, please visit The deadline to apply is Wednesday, October 10. For more information about TECHCORPShack, please visit

Let’s celebrate – Summer 2018!

As summer comes to an end, so do many of our TECH CORPS programs. We want to thank all the people who make our camps and programs possible– sponsors, partners, volunteers, parents and staff.
In just 10 weeks this summer, nearly 1,200 students and more than 50 teachers participated in TECH CORPS programs. We hope you will join us in celebrating their accomplishments.

This video highlights just a fraction of our work to Educate, Excite and Empower – enjoy!

For more information about specific programs, visit:

My Experience at TECH CORPS as a Columbus Foundation Fellow

My name is Madeline Foley and I’m finishing up my undergrad this fall with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Electronic Media, and I’m starting an Art Education Masters, both at the University of Cincinnati. This summer I worked with TECH CORPS doing all things media. I came to work for TECH CORPS through The Columbus Foundation, where I’m part of the summer 2018 fellows cohort. I’m so thankful they placed me here!

There were different areas of media that I dabbled in this summer. One thing I did was graphic design. I worked on promotional graphics for Kroger community rewards, and Amazon Smile. Both companies will donate to us if you sign up! We had promos for these already, but they definitely needed a makeover. I created a quick image to celebrate that we were given a Columbus Wonderful Workplace award this year! I also was able to work on a campaign with multiple graphic pieces, so that was a cool experience. In November we have an event called TECHCORPShack, which is a fun hackathon event for high school students. I created three pieces to be used to promote on social media and across our platforms to spread the word. I really had fun with these and tried to make them stand out! Lastly, I created an image to promote The Big Table event with The Columbus Foundation.

Another leg of what I did this summer was creating video content. I’d definitely say that I focused the most energy in this area. I spent a lot of time working on groups of short videos, but also longer, stand alone videos. I created promo videos for the the E4Tech Program, Student TECH and Student WEB CORPS programs, a TECH CORPS to Per Scholas Pathway video, and a 2018 Summer recap video.

The group of videos I worked on was a Summer Youth Employment Spotlight series. We have so many amazing student employees who all have their own stories, so we wanted to document and share their journey with TECH CORPS. I conducted interviews with them and put together short, minute to two minute long clips highlighting them individually. This was a really fun project for me.

These and all other videos can be found on our website and YouTube.

The third aspect of my job was to run our social media. TECH CORPS has a very active Twitter account, so I had to plan and make sure I was on top of it! I had a lot of fun with these kinds of posts, using popular hashtags to celebrate our students. Women in tech Wednesday was one I really liked, to show off the TECH CORPS girl power.

Now, the final segment of my summer duties. I had the opportunity to visit a lot of our program sites and take pictures and videos, which I used later to edit into those videos I mentioned. I was even able to take a day trip up to Cleveland to visit our Northeast Ohio camps. This was really cool for me because I got to see just a glimpse of how our work affects other areas besides Columbus. We have Techie Camps in New Jersey, Rhode Island, Georgia, Ohio, Colorado, and California. Now THAT would have been a business trip. I got to see a wide variety of programs, including: Student WEB CORPS, Techie Camps, IT On Ramp, and E4Tech.

My favorite thing to do this summer was visit Summer Youth Employment sites and Techie Camps. Seeing the students make friends and work with each other is so exciting and rewarding. I’m really glad that I had the chance to create a Student TECH CORPS video and update the Student WEB CORPS video because I got to spend quality time with these employees and their instructors.

I couldn’t be more thankful for my summer at TECH CORPS. I learned so much professionally and personally. The experience totally flew by, I really don’t know where the time went. I want to continue working with both TECH CORPS and The Columbus Foundation in the future, so I can’t say bye forever. But I’m so glad I got to be a part of the team for this ten week period.

To read/listen to my podcast documenting my summer experience, visit the fellows blog at

Growing NEO IT Talent

Employers & Higher Education Focused on Growing Northeast Ohio’s Future IT Talent

Hands-on Tech Camps Provide Immersive Experiences for Regional Students.

OHIO — Leading employers and industry groups in Northeast Ohio have joined forces with TECH CORPS and RITE to deliver the highly acclaimed High School Tech Camps to area high school students this summer. The camps are designed to attract and prepare the next generation of IT workers by helping young people build the skills and knowledge employers need.

From June 4th to August 17th, these week-long camps will engage high school students in hands-on, interactive, technology-based activities. High School Tech Camps allow students to learn alongside their peers who share their passion for IT and technology. Students in the programming camp will explore basic software development and coding using C# while students in the Cyber Security camp will explore various security techniques, while working in simulated environments.

“As an IT employer, a member of RITE’s Board and a tech camp sponsor, we know firsthand that the demand for IT talent is significant and projected to grow in the years to come,” said Kathy Golden, Chief Technology Officer, OEC. “The camps have provided nearly 400 students in Northeast Ohio with hands-on opportunities to develop key technical and problem-solving skills, connect with local and passionate IT professionals, and experience a college campus.”
In addition to OEC, these camps are sponsored by Bendix, Eaton, Hyland, NEOSIM, and The J.M. Smucker Company. Each camp is hosted by a local college or university. The host schools include Baldwin Wallace University, Cleveland State University, Cuyahoga Community College, Kent State University, Lakeland Community College, Lorain County Community College, and The University of Akron.

To be considered for the camps students need to apply by midnight Friday, May 4, 2018. All student applications must be accompanied by a Teacher Recommendation. Teacher Recommendation forms must be submitted by 9am, Monday, May 7, 2018.

Students can apply on RITE’s website at
The application includes a short essay and requires a teacher’s recommendation. Up to 20 students will be selected for each camp based on their application, essay, and letter of recommendation.

Summer 2018: Educate, Excite and Empower

Apply today for TECH CORPS Summer Camps

Building robots.  Coding mobile apps.  Creating 3D models.  Designing video games. These are just some of the things students will be doing in TECH CORPS camps this summer.

Applications are now open for Techie Camp and High School Tech Camp.  These full-day, week-long campsare designed to educate, excite and empower students with technology while also promoting creativity, collaboration and problem-solving.

TECH CORPS programs empower students to become active creators and designers with technology versus passive consumers and users.

These camps fill up fast – so don’t delay! Applications are open for no cost and low costcamps in a variety of locations.

Techie Camp (rising 3rd-5thand 6th-8th grades) will be offered at a variety of locations in Central and Northeast Ohio, as well as California (Los Angeles and San Diego), Colorado (Loveland), New Jersey (Trenton), Rhode Island (Providence) and Georgia (DeKalb County). These full day, week-long camps allow students to take a deep dive into topics like: Programming, App Development, 3D Printing, Robotics and Web Development. To find a camp near you, visit

High School TechCampGet your applications in today for the #1 tech camp in Northeast Ohio!  Apply for High School Tech Camp and learn how to use technology to improve communities and solve problems.These full day, week-long camps, delivered in partnership with RITE, allow rising 9th – 12th grade students to take a deep dive into topics like: Programming (C#) and Cyber Security.  Visit to find yours!

This summer, in addition to Techie Camp and High School Tech Camp, TECH CORPS will deliver IT On Ramp, Student CODE CORPS, Student TECH CORPS and Student WEB CORPS to close to 400 high school students in Ohio.

Information on all TECH CORPS programs can be found at or by calling 614-583-9211.

2017 Annual Report: What a Year!

Dear Friends,

Today, we proudly release our 2017 Annual Report.  Thanks to the support of an amazing group of sponsors, partners and volunteers, TECH CORPS educated, excited and empowered more than 2,200  students – a 44% increase from last year.

More than 160 technology professionals volunteered 1,400+ hours implementing TECH CORPS programs and inspiring our next generation of technology innovators and leaders.

Through our E4Tech and #CutOut4CS programs and in partnership with the Teaching & Learning Collaborative, we provided computer science curriculum and training to 55 elementary school teachers.  These teachers received the knowledge and confidence to bring computer science into their classroom in a way that is rigorous and connected to student learning.

This year, we also:

  • Developed new programs and introduced new content areas, including Cyber Security and 3D printing
  • Increased the number of girls served annually to 41%
  • Created additional opportunities for TECH CORPS students to receive college credit or industry-recognized certificates

And finally, this summer, 10% of our instructors were former TECH CORPS students.  These brilliant young people are pursuing technology-related degrees, and they are all great examples of why we do the work we do.

As you flip through this report or watch our video, I hope you will join us in celebrating the accomplishments of our students and our ongoing commitment to bringing high-quality computer science learning experiences to all students.  We look forward to your continued support as we work to ensure ALL students have access to the technology skills, programs and resources that will enrich their education today and prepare them for college or career tomorrow.


Annual Report:

Report Video: