When Leo Martin graduated with a degree in Community and Regional Development, the Oakland native struggled to find a job. So he sought out additional training to adapt to the changing landscape of work here, and was drawn to Hack the Hood for the chance to learn web design and help small businesses in his community.
But once Leo began our Spring 2015 Bootcamp, he soon realized that the program could offer him much more.
"Hack the Hood exposed me to the different types of companies that are involved in tech. It made me aware of what was going on in my own backyard," Leo says. "It made everything more accessible and really opened my mind to being able to follow more than one passion - to be an entrepreneur."
After Bootcamp, Leo stayed on for our continuation programs. He joined our alumni network and graduated from our Digital Marketing Doors program in April.
Best of all, Leo's new skills and growing connections helped him land an apprenticeship at New American Media and a data specialist job with Merritt College. He's also started an online ecommerce sneaker company, is working on an app, and freelances as a web designer!
Leo's story is proof that investing in Hack the Hood makes a difference.
We are building a family of support rooted in letting young people know we believe they can be tech creators, full participants in the Bay Area economy, change makers for their families and more.
We're thankful for all the people who help make stories like Leo's possible!
Hack the Hood Blog
News items and musings on tech inclusion, youth development, buying local and more.