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Code4Life recently wrapped up its spring semester. Thanks to all 57 of our volunteers and the 52 students who participated in the program this semester. In the fall, we will be expanding from four classrooms to eight, and from 52 to about 100 students.


Code4Life Francis Stevens Module 1 Image 6

Students and volunteers at Francis-Stevens


Code4Life Francis Stevens Module 1 Image 5

Module 1 students present their final project


Code4Life Francis Stevens Module 1 Image 4

More presentations


Code4Life Francis Stevens Module 1 Image 2

Students at work on final projects with faculty adviser Mr. Levy

Photos by Bre’Anna Brown

Visit the Economic Growth DC Foundation website for more information on Code4Life.

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The Economic Growth DC Foundation and Accenture put on Week 2 of the first 8 week module of their basic coding class at KIPP Northeast Academy. The first module makes use of an innovative programming language for young people called SNAP. It was created at the University of California — Berkeley.

Code4Life Week 2

In this photo, an Accenture instructor demonstrates how the X and Y axis are used to position items on the screen.

Code4Life Week 2 -- Student Presentation 2

A KIPPster demonstrates how her first computer program works, showing off her creativity and presentation skills.

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The first official Code4Life class kicked off yesterday.

Code4Life Opening Day Erika Opening Class


Thanks to all the volunteers from Accenture who’ve put so much of their time into this effort developing the curriculum and teaching the classes.

Code4Life Opening Day Picture of 1st Exercise


No way this happens without them.

And thanks to our faculty adviser, Mr. Baker. He’s done a ton of work helping us get set up and launched.

And finally, thanks to a great group of smart, ambitious young 5th & 6th graders at KIPP NE Academy. We see great things ahead.

To support the expansion of Code4Life, click on the “Contribute” button at the top of the page.

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Operation Capstone is the name we’ve given to a plan we’ve devised to address the problem of high unemployment for DC residents returning from incarceration. Approximately 4,000 individuals return to the District from incarceration every year and there are approximately 60,000 ex-offenders residing in the District. Approximately 30,000 of the District’s returning citizens are unemployed. Finding work for this population is both a public safety issue and a moral imperative.

Our program is designed to place approximately 1,500 returning citizens per year and was inspired by a job placement project in Newark, NJ. It was a joint venture between former Mayor Corey Booker and the Manhattan Institute. The three people most directly responsible for conceiving, building and implementing the Newark program have agreed to meet with anyone interested in a similar program for the District.

Our guests will explain the origins of their program, the “rapid attachment to work” model they’ve developed and will tell us how they’ve achieved placement rates considerably higher than other efforts around the country.

The call is open to the public and will take place on September 18th at 1:00pm.

The conference call dial-in number is 712.432.1500 and the participant code is 31353#.

If you are interested in employment issues as they pertain to ex-offenders, please feel free to join the call.

Operation Capstone

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Thank you for your continued interest in and support of the Economic Growth DC Foundation. Many of you have already suggested ways in which we can improve our efforts and our message. We appreciate the input. We’ve found, through trial and error, that the best way to give someone a full-overview of what we do as an organization is the attached letter. It’s not too long, but it will give you a good feel for what we do.

Letter of Introduction-Update for Friends of Economic Growth DC 9-28-14

Don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions or comments. You can email us info@egdcfoundation.org

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Our foundation focuses on education and workforce development based solutions for our biggest challenge: the real unemployment rate in the East End. With this particular program, we are taking on the most difficult part of that challenge — job placement for ex-offenders. 4,000-6,000 DC residents return from incarceration to the District each year. The unemployment rate for returning citizens is estimated to be in the 45-50% range. This program will place a minimum of 1,250 returning citizens per year into meaningful employment. Details are here:

Operation Capstone

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Code4Life Logo

Code4Life is an after school program developed by the Economic Growth DC Foundation in partnership with Accenture. It will teach basic computer programming skills to boys and girls in the District of Columbia public and charter school systems.  Scheduled to begin in September of 2014, the program will provide instruction in basic coding to a groups of 12-15 sixth graders at the new KIPP Northeast Academy.

The class will meet for two hours after school, one day a week for the entire school year. A summer immersion program will be offered starting in 2015. Students will remain in the program and working on progressively more complex programming, including a robotics module, until they complete 12th-grade.

Accenture is currently designing the curriculum for the program and will provide the instructors for each class. The Foundation will administer the program, provide operational and managerial support and handle fundraising. The curriculum is being designed to scale easily. Assuming initial success, we would like to see the program spread to other DCPS and charter schools as quickly as resources permit.

The program envisions helping program participants with internships, SAT preparation, and for those enrolling in higher-ed computer science programs, help with applications and financial aid. The program will be considered a success when participants are successfully enrolled in a 4-year college level computer science program, in a technical training program, or successfully placed in a professional technology job upon graduation from high school.

If you would be interested in supporting this program, click on the “Contribute” button at the top of this page. The Foundation is registered 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Your contribution is fully tax-deductible as a charitable gift.

Code 4 Life One Pager

Coding is a Trade — Treat it Like One

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Thanks you for spending some time on our site. EGDCF is a charitable foundation focused exclusively on research and programming in the areas of education and workforce development. Here are some examples of the projects we’re currently working on or planning:

  1. Research – We are currently seeking a Director of Education Policy. This individual will be responsible for organizing and analyzing education policy research that is of interest to EGDCF, as well as conducting original research focused on improving educational outcomes. If you would be interested in being considered, please forward your resume to resumes@egdcfoundation.org
  2. Code4Life — Is an after-school program created in partnership with technology giant Accenture that will teach DCPS  and charter school middle-school students them basic computer programming. The first class will take place in  the fall of 2014. We are currently working with Accenture and Girls Who Code on the curriculum and the training of instructors.  The Foundation will manage and administer the program and provide the funding. Accenture will provide the instructors for the classes. The program will launch at Eliot-Hine Middle School on Capitol Hill.
  3. Leadership Development Training Class — In partnership with the DC Leadership Development Council, the Foundation will be launching a high-school level leadership development training class for high-potential students at Eastern High School. This class is scheduled to begin in the fall of 2014. The Foundation will administer and underwrite the program. The DC Leadership Devel0pment Council will assemble the curriculum and and provide the instructors.
  4. Placement Coordinator Training – The District provides the bulk of its job training and youth development programs through non-profit social service providers. Each of those providers has at least one person that is responsible for placing their program’s graduates into jobs. The Foundation will use its expertise its private sector expertise in the field of executive search and job placement to offer instruction to each of these placement coordinators. This training will be help these placement coordinators become more effective at what they do, thereby increasing the number of people who are placed into jobs at the conclusion of their training. We are currently looking for a training manager and the funding to underwrite this program.
  5. DCPS Debate Tournament — In partnership with the DC Urban Debate League, the Foundation will organize a debate tournament for DCPS and charter school students in September of 2014.
  6. Early Childhood Education Program – We are currently investigating potential programs for this age cohort. If you have any suggestions, please email programming@egdcfoundation.org.
  7. Elementary Age Program – We are also studying various options for programs designed to improve student achievement at DC elementary schools.
  8. Post-Secondary Program – We are investigating programming in this area. We are interested in strategies for providing post-secondary skills development for graduating seniors and transitioning them into the local workforce as quickly as possible.
  9. Re-entry Program — The Foundation is proposing the implementation of a prisoner re-entry system originally developed in Newark, NJ through a partnership between Mayor Corey Boooker and the Manhattan Institute. The Newark program has experienced real success with its rapid re-hire program designed to get returning citizens into the workforce quickly. They have experienced a much better employment and retention rate, as well as lower recidivism. In an average year, 8,000 individuals return to the District from incarceration. The District’s Office Of Returning Citizens Affairs provided at least one service to 5,100 returned citizens in fiscal 2013. This is laudable, but only 152 were placed into employment due directly to ORCA’s efforts. That’s a 2.9% percent placement rate. There is much room for improvement. We are working with partners towards an attempt to replicate’s Newark’s success.
  10. Support Work Place DC — Work Place DC is an innovative idea for bringing together a group of non-profits that provide job training and other workforce development services under one roof. This would allow them to pool their resources and share back office functions. It will allow them collectively to provide a broader range of workforce services more effectively. The program is designed to be conducted in collaboration with the District government. It is our hope that representatives from various DC agencies will co-locate at Work Place DC. The Foundation is working with the Jovid Foundation to help formulate Work Place DC’s business plan, and we intend to help them find a suitable facility and get their program implemented.
  11. Fundraising — All of these efforts require financial support from interested individuals and institutions. EGDCF is a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation. All contributions are fully tax-deductible as charitable gift. If you’d like to support the foundation or any specific individual program, CLICK HERE. If you are already on our site, click on the “Contribute” button at the top of this page.

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Thank you for visiting our new site. The District of Columbia struggles with stubbornly high rates of unemployment and underemployment in certain parts of the city. The poverty rate for African-American residents of the District is 39%. In the short term, we need to accelerate the rate of growth of DC’s economy so that it creates the number and kinds of District jobs that can ultimately pull people out of poverty. Economic Growth DC (http://economicgrowthdc.org)works on these issues on a daily basis.

The Economic Growth DC Foundation was created to work on problems with a longer time-horizon: our job training and education systems. We support research and programming that will help District residents and students gain the skills needed to succeed in a 21st-century workforce.

In the coming months, we will launch a program in partnership with a major technology company to teach a group of 12-15 DC middle school students basic computer programming. The program, called Code4Life, is designed to be scalable and longitudinal in nature. We plan to keep students in the program and engaged with increasingly complex technology through their senior year of high school. We will help them with internships and SAT preparation, as well as the college application and financial aid process.

We are also partnering with the DC Leadership Development Council to provide basic leadership development training to high school students in the DC traditional and charter school system. We are also sponsoring a debate tournament in partnership with the DC Urban Debate League in April of 2014. Through partnerships like these, we plan to develop scalable in school and after school programming that can help students develop the leadership and communications skills needed in today’s workplace. You can learn more about these and our other initiatives by clicking on the “Programs” button at the top of this page.

A well-educated, highly skilled workforce is the most important ingredient in strengthening our economy. We look forward to working across the District of Columbia to support programming and research that help students think critically, solve problems, communicate effectively, collaborate as part of a team and, ultimately, be successful in the District’s workforce.

To support our work on a fully tax-deductible basis, click on the “Contribute” button at the top of this page.