By Oliver Camarena and Darling Gonzalez
NEW YORK, NY – A 2022 State of Tech Diversity report issued by the NAACP and Kapor Center last week describes disparities in the tech sector.
Dr. Ivory Toldson, the National Director of Education Innovation and Research for the NAACP, called for an increase in Black representation within the tech sector.
Dr. Toldson described how only 13 percent of Black Americans are in the workforce—but there is only three percent of Black representation on tech companies’ boards, four percent in executive leadership, and 3.6 percent in technical roles in the largest U.S. based tech companies.
Toldson asked for an increase in transparency in data and accountability from educational services, tech companies, and the government.
Moreover, in the 2022 State of Tech Diversity Report, Toldson also highlighted the disparities in computer science education.
The Kapor Center reports that three-fourths of computer science teachers are white with only 57 percent of computer science teachers feeling prepared to engage in culturally-responsive practices to address their diverse student bodies.
Only eight percent of computer science bachelor’s degrees are being awarded to Black students.
“Inequitable education structures, policies, and practices continue to impact Black students in traditional institutions of higher education, as well as alternative educational pathways like tech bootcamps and apprenticeships,” the report outlines.
Thus, addressing these issues is fundamental to creating solutions to the persistent disparities in the tech workforce as a whole, the report adds.
The study also reveals clear evidence of how the lack of support and change on the educational level has also contributed to the vast disparities of Black talent in the tech sector, noting, “While students who participate in AP CS courses are three to four times more likely to major in CS, Black students only make up 3.5 percent of that course.”
The report argues there is a major impact on Black communities and their ability to benefit from technology’s promise and potential because they are not provided with the support they need to further pursue these careers.
The report charges there are still no substantial changes in the tech sector.
“Data show Black founders represent only a marginal percentage of overall capital raised in the last year, and BLCK VC’s State of Black Venture Report showed that Black fund managers’ first venture fund was almost (two times) lower than other fund managers,” the report asserts.