Students participating in Amazon Future Engineer program
Photo by Rachael A. Jones

Building futures in computer science

Amazon Future Engineer program gives students from underrepresented and underserved communities access to computer science camps and classes in addition to scholarships and internships at Amazon.
on November 01, 2018
Long-term thinking and innovating at scale are mindsets ingrained in Amazon’s culture. It’s no surprise, then, that our approach to making sure all children and young adults are set up for long-term success is rooted in a scalable, long-term program called Amazon Future Engineer (AFE).

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that by 2020 there will be 1.4 million computer-science-related jobs available and only 400,000 computer science graduates with the skills to apply for those jobs. Computer science is the fastest growing science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) field, but only 8% of STEM graduates earn a computer science degree. And only a tiny minority of those graduates are from underrepresented and underserved backgrounds.

The average computer science major makes 40% more in lifetime earnings than the average college graduate and nearly three times more than the average high school graduate. Despite the opportunity, the vast majority of public elementary and high schools, particularly those in underrepresented and underserved communities, do not offer computer science classes.

Studies have also shown that exposing young children to STEM and computer science motivates them to stay interested long-term – through high school, college, and often beyond. Over the past year, we've tested this program in a few schools across the country, and the initial feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.

AFE is a four-part, childhood-to-career program intended to empower, educate, and train 10 million underprivileged students each year to pursue careers in computer science.

Here's how AFE works:

  1. K-8

    AFE creates after-school programs, summer coding programs, and online coding activities to students from kindergarten – 8th grade across the United States.
  2. High School

    AFE offers introductory and AP computer science courses in collaboration with AWS Educate and Edhesive to teachers and educators in 2,000 high schools across the United States.
  3. Scholarships

    AFE invests in 100 $10,000/year scholarships for students pursuing computer science degrees in college.
  4. Internships

    AFE provides 12-week Amazon internships for college freshmen and sophomores studying computer science.
About the Author
Allison Flicker supports the "Amazon in the Community" team.
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