Alexandra Liggins taught herself how to code so she could teach others. Shortly after graduating from the University of Notre Dame, she co-founded South Bend Code School to make coding more accessible to all. In two years’ time, SBCS worked with over 200 students in formal programs as well as over 700 students in greater community outreach.
In South Bend Code School’s first program, 19 students (with no prior coding knowledge) coded 23 websites in five weeks. Four of their websites were civic applications, promoting non-violence in the city of South Bend. Two years later, over 200 youth were coding in the formal program. Working with students in the Juvenile Justice System, over 700 students have been given hope through coding. South Bend Code School has also created coding alumni programs for students to continue learning, and offer students opportunities such as job and internship placement, college and scholarship application assistance, and tutoring in core academic areas.
By starting a scholarship fund, South Bend Code School works to provide coding for all by maintaining diverse classrooms of 47% female, 56% underrepresented minorities, and 50% split in socioeconomic diversity. They hope to only add to those numbers of diversity.
Alexandra Liggins accepted the award on behalf of South Bend Code School.