Let’s get the word out!
As a Break Through Tech Chicago partner, you are helping to change the face of tech. You are creating more space for women. Advancing inclusion. Helping organizations to better reflect the diversity of the country we live in.
That’s worth talking about.
We’ll tell the world about your partnership with us. If you’d like to do the same, this brief media kit provides information for communicating about Break Through Tech Chicago and our work together.
About Break Through Tech Chicago
We empower college women to explore and master the computer science skills that will prepare them for careers in tech.
We are an affiliate of a national program for women in technology, Break Through Tech. Our primary funders are Pivotal Ventures (led by Melinda Gates), the Cognizant U.S. Foundation, and Verizon.
Break Through Tech originated in 2016 as a program called Women in Technology and Entrepreneurship in New York (WiTNY), created in partnership with the City University of New York and a broad set of industry partners. Break Through Tech Chicago is the second site, announced in 2020. A third site in metropolitan Washington, D.C., was announced in 2021.
We focus on encouraging and supporting college women (cis and trans) and nonbinary individuals. We recognize that additional institutional barriers exist for Black, Latina, Indigenous, low-income, and first-generation college women, and we specifically seek to elevate their voices and grow their numbers within the tech community. We have ample space for allies: in short, if you believe in our mission, we’d love to have you on our team. We can work together to promote the visibility and inclusion of women and underrepresented communities in tech.
Break Through Tech Chicago builds a strong community around the students we serve and offers two academic programs (plus career-readiness programs) to help them take the first steps toward a tech-oriented college education. This webpage gives an overview of what we do.
Break Through Tech Chicago is housed in the computer science department at the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC). Please note that UIC recently removed the “at” before the word Chicago in its official name.
UIC is among the top 30 most diverse universities in the United States, according to U.S. News & World Report, which also ranks UIC #10 in the nation for social mobility.
Thirty-eight percent of UIC students are the first in their families to attend college, 40 percent are graduates of Chicago Public Schools, and 80 percent live with their families and commute to campus.
One in four UIC students chooses a STEM major.
Computer science, which is part of the College of Engineering, is one of UIC’s fastest-growing academic departments. Student enrollment has increased by 650 percent since 2005. The department is strong in both teaching and research, holding six places in the U.S. top 25 in CSRankings.com’s research rankings.
About underrepresentation in tech
Metrics and statistics that can help in making the case:
By 2026, estimates are that the United States will only be producing 18 percent of the graduates needed to meet the nation’s tech workforce needs. (Source: National Center for Women & Information Technology)
Although 58 percent of all college degrees are awarded to women, only 1 to 2 percent of these women choose to study computer science and related tech disciplines. (Source: National Center for Education Statistics)
Even today, women represent only 26 percent of the computing workforce, 19 percent of U.S. undergraduate degree earners in computer and information science, 11 percent of senior leaders in the tech industry, and 11 percent of tech-industry CIOs. (Source: Rebooting Representation, a report prepared by McKinsey & Company and Pivotal Ventures)
Taglines for employer partners
Our national organization compiled these taglines or phrases for possible incorporation into your stories and posts, if you are so inclined. (We recognize that if you have a dedicated communications or media department in your organization, you may prefer to craft your own or adapt these to suit your organization’s personality.)
The future of innovation depends on all of us.
We do things differently to get things done.
We are: tearing down barriers, opening doors, reshaping industries.
We are: creating new pathways, empowering more innovators, building the future.
We are: building a more inclusive tech ecosystem from the university to the workplace.
Finding and tagging us
Post suggestions: Guild
- Photos of your staff volunteers with their Guild student teams
- A brief explanation of how your staff volunteers are helping Guild participants
- A note about which tech skills your staff are sharing with Guild students
- Messages of support or congratulations to Guild student teams on their final projects
- A call to other organizations to join you in sponsoring a section of Guild: use chicago.breakthroughtech.org
Post suggestions: Sprinternships
- A photo of your Sprinterns and a note about the project they are working on (perhaps introducing what a Sprinternship is)
- An individual mini-profile of one of your Sprinterns
- A post about why your organization hosts Sprinterns and why you see Sprinternships as important (for example: increasing gender equity in tech, welcoming a diversity of ideas, broadening the talent pool in Chicago)
- Have your Sprinterns do an Instagram story takeover for a day
- A call for other organizations to get involved with Break Through Tech Chicago: use chicago.breakthroughtech.org
Lockups and colors
Click to open in new window and drag to desktop:
- Break Through Tech Chicago lockup with white text
- Break Through Tech Chicago lockup with black text
- Break Through Tech Chicago pared-down “affinity mark” (no text)
- Primary dark blue: CMYK 100, 69, 42, 37 // Hex #002D45 // RGB 0, 45, 69
- Accent lime green: CMYK 20, 0, 96, 4 // Hex #C1F400 // RGB 193, 244, 0
- Accent blue-gray: CMYK 8, 2, 0, 20 // Hex #B7C5CB // RGB 183, 197, 203
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with “Partner communications” in the subject line, and we will get back to you with any answers or additional resources that you may need.