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Black History and the Future of Data Science Roundtable

Watch our livestream in honor of Black History Month and educate yourself with resources about BIPOC in data science.
Feb 2022  · 8 min read

On Tuesday, February 15, 2022, DataCamp’s Social Impact Manager Nathaniel Taylor-Leach hosted a live roundtable discussion in honor of Black History Month. We invited three Black leaders in tech and philanthropy to join the conversation: 

The goal of the livestream, “Black History and the Future of Data Science,” was to highlight the contributions the Black community has made to computer and data science over the past century, while also identifying today’s challenges facing young people of color that make these highly lucrative and influential careers less accessible than they should be. 

One important theme our guests touched upon was the dire need for more Black and Brown data scientists in the AI and ML industries so that the algorithms of tomorrow do not unfairly perpetuate today’s unconscious biases and negative stereotypes. Questions from our viewing audience also prompted our panel of experts to recommend ways that nonprofits, companies, and governments can promote diversity, equity, and inclusion within their ranks by investing in learning development, internal promotions, paid interns, and more.

Below is a collection of resources shared by our panelists to learn more about the influential individuals and topics addressed during the livestream:

Black Pioneers in Data, Computers, and Education

Black Leaders and Resouces in Data Science Today

Black-led Data Science NGOs

About the Panelists

Nikisha Alcindor is a Managing Director at Riverside Management Group, a merchant bank, and doctoral student in the Narendra Paul Loomba Department of Management at the Zicklin School of Business, Baruch College. She is a CUNY Graduate Center Fellow and the Provost Enhancement Fellow. She specializes in Strategic Management and her research area is in mergers and acquisitions. Nikisha is interested in examining the success rates of M&A transactions by applying artificial intelligence and machine learning to decision and risk analysis. She has an extensive background in corporate finance, healthcare, and asset management. Prior to joining the PhD program, she spent time in practice at Apax Partners, Pfizer Inc., Johnson & Johnson, Goldman Sachs, and Columbia University. She is a Board member of the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone. Nikisha holds a BA in Chemistry from Emory University and an MBA from Columbia Business School as a Leon Cooperman Scholar.

DataCamp has partnered with Nikisha on her nonprofit, The STEM Educational Institute (SEI). SEI provides programming that gives underrepresented high school students the technological skills needed to enter today’s workforce while building generational wealth. In partnership with several corporations, the program aims to serve as a diverse talent pipeline for organizations and to build generational wealth.

Sean Burrowes is the co-founder of Ingressive For Good (I4G), whose mission is to increase the earning power of tech talents in Africa by training 1,000,000 youths and connecting 5,000 to jobs in the next five years. Since joining the Ingressive conglomerate in 2017, Ingressive has expanded from Nigeria into Kenya, Ghana, South Africa, and Rwanda. Sean leverages a decade of international operational experience and applies it to projects impacting youth-led initiatives, entrepreneurs, digital media platforms, and African tech ecosystems. He is committed to building the socio-economic infrastructure needed for a new African narrative by providing equal access to technology.

Sean is a proud graduate of Jackson State University and CEO of operations consulting firm Burrowes Enterprises. His overarching goal is to discover and create the operational processes necessary to build an economic bridge between Africa and its diaspora. In partnership with DataCamp Donates, the Ingressive For Good team has provided free data science education to thousands of disadvantaged individuals across Africa.

Roger Roman is an entrepreneur, angel investor, and marketing consultant for technology-driven startups. He is a two-time startup founder, and for the past five years, he’s served as the Managing Partner of Push Consulting & Marketing, a growth marketing and business development consulting agency. Roger has been recognized by The New York Times, Venture Beat, Black Enterprise, LinkedIn, and others as an authority on digital marketing and startup growth. He has guided fledgling startups from launch to acquisition and helped established corporations such as Walt Disney, Universal Music Group, and Apple drive online visibility and growth.

Roger is the CEO and Co-founder of AfriBlocks, the Global Pan-African Freelance Digital Marketplace, which is building the tech infrastructure for Africa's future of work. AfriBlocks aims to create a diverse network of qualified & skilled African Professionals and to connect them with remote jobs from across the world. In partnership with DataCamp Donates, he’s helped provide free unlimited data science education to hundreds of freelancers in Africa and the US.

We’d love to hear your feedback!

Thank you to our panelists and all the viewers around the world who tuned in and asked questions! If you enjoyed this livestream, we would love to hear from you! Email us at donate@datacamp.com. To learn more about DataCamp’s Social Impact initiatives, visit datacamp.com/donates

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