The Rewriting the Code Fellowship Program is our flagship program for women undergraduates studying computer science and engineering who are interested in gaining applied experience through internships with leading tech companies.
The Fellowship offers women undergraduates studying computer science and engineering the opportunity to apply their skills, as well as join a community of peers, role models and coaches to support and advance their tech careers.
The Rewriting the Code Fellowship is a national program that provides applied experience through an internship, along with community, coaching, and career on-ramps (through educational programming) to undergraduate women who have taken at least two courses in computer science. This summer experience builds confidence, community and connection to support and advance women at the undergraduate level.
Based on a highly successful pilot program completed in 2016, Rewriting the Code will be placing Fellows in internships in summer 2017 with leading tech companies in Silicon Valley, and Research Triangle Park, NC.
In collaboration with the student Fellows, computer science and engineering educators, and leaders of tech companies, we have designed the Fellowship Program to respond to what women in computer science and engineering say they want and need:
- Real world, applied work experiences such as placement in internships with tech companies
- Educational programming that builds upon what they learn in their college courses and helps prepare them for success in their internships
- Leadership training and confidence building programs that directly address their feelings of isolation, imposter syndrome and implicit bias
- Activities and informal interactions that encourage a sense of community and peer support from other young women in tech
- Coaching and mentorship from women and men with professional experience and commitment to helping the next generation of women in tech
- Meaningful interactions with leaders in tech companies to learn about the opportunities, priorities and cultures at different companies
Pilot Program Success
Rewriting the Code has demonstrated an effective, comprehensive approach to support undergraduate women in building confidence and community that sustains them in computer science and engineering majors, and ultimately in their tech careers.
The Rewriting the Code Fellowship Program has been scaled-up from a highly successful pilot program launched in summer 2016 at Duke University focused on addressing the confidence gap women face in college. Ten undergraduate women in computer science, many first and second years in college, were selected to participate in the pilot, including:
- Career On-Ramps
- Internships: Young women were connected with internships at leading Silicon Valley companies (Apple, LinkedIn, Intuit, Carbon3D, Fanatics and LifeLock)
- Training: Provided women leadership education with a focus on confidence building.
- Coaching: Each student was matched with a senior mentor.
- Community: Ten students lived together to encourage a greater sense of belonging.
The students who participated in the pilot said they had a “life changing” experience in the program. All the young women who completed the program indicate that they plan to complete their computer science majors, so the program effectively addressed the quit rate in this small cohort.
Rewriting the Code bridged the confidence gap. All of the students who participated felt less isolated and more excited and committed about being a software engineer/ programmer.
“This program opened up a door—no a world of possibilities and opportunities for me, providing insight into the numerous facets of the tech industry. I would not be working on the significant projects that I am, nor forming connections with the amazing people that I have without this program—it has literally changed my life.”
-First-year student intern at Apple