On Thursday, November 9th Atlanta Tech Village officially kicked off our Diversity & Inclusion initiative entitled “It Takes A Village” with a dynamic Twitter Chat led by our new Diversity Ambassador, Justin McLeod (@IamJCloud).
What’s A Twitter Chat?
For those who are unfamiliar, a Twitter chat is a public Twitter conversation around one unique hashtag (In this case #ItTakesAVillage). This hashtag allows anyone to follow the discussion and participate in it.
Why a Twitter Chat?
Atlanta Tech Village pledges to have honest and open conversations about how we can work together to support startups and organizations led by women and people of color.
We were looking for creative ways to amplify the importance of diversity and inclusion in technology by including as many people as possible to contribute their perspectives, experiences, and solutions.
Hosting an offline event most of the time not everyone gets the opportunity to speak their mind and let’s face it this Atlanta traffic isn’t getting any better.
We figured facilitating an insightful conversation at the comfort of your own home would spark thebest discussion.
Who joined the Party?
We hosted representatives from a variety of notable women + minority led tech organizations including Startup Atlanta, Women in Technology, Hypepotamus, Women Who Code, and more.
How Did it Go?
Over the span of an hour we asked 6 different questions that triggered some great conversation. Here’s an example of some of the responses we received:
1.Why should diversity and inclusion be important in tech?
2. Is it really harder to be a woman or person of color in tech?
3. It has been said that diverse candidates are hard to find, Is there a pipeline problem?
4. How can tech startups find more diverse talent?
5. How do we get better at welcoming new ideas from diverse backgrounds?
6. What’s one thing can do to better for Atlanta diverse startup community?
Here are some notable solutions that were brought up in our Twitter Chat:
- Education: Reevaluate the early-stage educational system to encourage girls and young people of color to explore a career in tech.
- Meet Them Where They Are: Get out the building and go to underrepresented communities by visiting more diverse colleges to share opportunities with students.
- Support: Invite women and people of color entrepreneurs to speak and share their experience along with empowering organizations who support them.
RSVP to Finesse Your Funds, a panel discussion on raising funds in unconventional ways on December 14th.
Apply for an It Takes A Village Scholarship by December 15th.