Amazon today pledged to provide introductory and advanced computer science classes in 130 high schools in New York City, home to one of its two future headquarters campuses.
The classes are supported by the new Amazon Future Engineer program, which aims to beef up computer science education, specifically for underprivileged kids and underserved communities. Amazon will offer the classes in all five boroughs, including 30 schools in Queens, the area that will be home to the company’s New York campus.
Citing U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics, Amazon says by next year there will be 1.4 million jobs requiring computer science expertise but only 400,000 computer science graduates with the necessary skills. Amazon wants to bridge that gap in New York and elsewhere.
“We want to help make sure more children across New York City gain the coding skills necessary to have successful careers in many fields,” said Jeff Wilke, CEO Worldwide Consumer, Amazon. “We are excited that Amazon Future Engineer will immediately impact more than 130 schools and thousands of students who do not currently have access to computer science education. We will continue to invest in bringing these classes to more schools in New York City and across the U.S.”
Amazon aims to reach more than 10 million kids with the coding activities and lessons each year and award 100 students with four-year, $10,000 college scholarships.
Amazon will offer the classes through online education company Edhesive. Amazon previously teamed up with Edhesive to sponsor schools that wanted to implement its curriculum for AP Computer Science. Students will receive a membership to AWS Educate, a free program for students as young as 14 to learn about cloud computing.