“The conversations, definitely – I love learning about their interests.”
“The popular misconceptions! They’re always fun.”
“Seeing what my future could look like.”
These are just a few responses from talent recruiters, software engineers and Code2College alumni who were asked, “What are you most looking forward to tonight?”
The annual Code2College Conduit is vastly different from traditional recruitment events. To start, Conduit is centered on undergraduate internship recruitment for the following summer season and hosted only by Code2College Visionary Partners – the companies who hire our Code2College high school technical interns. Most significantly, Conduit is open exclusively to our college-going alumni, giving them the opportunity to meet talent recruiters ahead of their on-campus recruitment in the Fall.
Conduit is a win-win for everyone: Code2College undergraduates get early access to our Visionary Partners’ paid internship opportunities, and our Visionary Partners get early access to our highly skilled technical talent.
But Conduit is special in another way. Everyone from the Talent Recruiter to the Computer Science Major has a personal connection to the Code2College mission – they are here because they know they are making a difference or growing in some way.
Don’t take our word for it. Learn what drove partners and alumni to Conduit and why they truly enjoyed the evening – in their own words.
“I am so passionate about this phase of people’s lives,” Lydia says brightly, sharing that her passion motivated her to support Code2College students at Conduit. “We can create opportunities for them and direct their excitement into the spaces that’s right for them.” Having guided numerous students through their first internship and even feelings of imposter syndrome, Lydia finds mentoring to be particularly fulfilling since it provides a front row seat to personal transformation. “Watching somebody blossom over the course of three months…that is the sweet stuff. It’s incredible.”
Zaria would have missed Conduit were it not for the image featured in the event promotion: a Black Code2College alumni interacting with a volunteer. “It’s a great professional opportunity [that also] seemed so personal, and being an introvert, that was important to me.” She made her rounds with nearly every Visionary Partner in attendance, where she was struck by each company’s warmth and values. “It’s really amazing to learn that companies have so much more to offer than just a job in a cubicle – it’s not like that at all! Their values have gotten me thinking about what I find important, and what company I’d fit in best.”
“It would have been really cool for me just starting out to hear from other interns,” says Anakaren, who was initially nervous to start her first internship. However once she started, she knew she was where she was supposed to be. Now, she recognizes the value of leaning on others with similar experience. “[At Conduit], I can tell them it’s not as intimidating as it seems. It is so doable, and is a great experience for anybody.”
Jordan’s passion for mentoring was lit last fall when he volunteered with Code2College for the first time. He feels strongly that the most important thing we can do for students is help them cultivate confidence. “These kids can build tech, they’re so smart, and they’re not far off from my own skills. They’re great at what they do, but society doesn’t always do a great job of telling them that.” His favorite moment from Conduit was meeting an intern he worked with virtually last summer in person. “It was amazing to connect with him. When I realized who he was, I was like, ‘Hey man! Welcome home!’”
Robert attended Conduit because, in his words, “Most of my resume is based on Code2College!” He credits Code2College for helping him land internships with VMware and Code2College Labs before his senior year of high school, and even a spot at MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory summer camp. “I even got the idea to start my own lawn mowing company from someone in Code2College – I [work with] 10 employees every summer!” Thanks to the critical professional skills and the encouragement he’s received from Code2College, he knows the sky’s the limit, no matter what he sets his mind to.
Conduit is not just an invaluable opportunity for both our Visionary Partners and Code2College undergraduates. It is a testament to how far these students have come. Just a few years ago they were shy 15 year-olds taking their first Code2College coding class, insecure about their lack of corporate and technical knowledge. Today, they’re confidently engaging with some of the biggest tech companies in the world, and feel empowered to choose the path that fits their ambitions best. Invariably they share that whenever there’s a Code2College opportunity on the horizon, they know it’s another stepping stone on the path of their desired STEM career.