The Thoma Foundation has long supported economic development in rural areas because Carl Thoma, the foundation founder and president, used to call rural New Mexico home. Most recently, the foundation partnered with CNM Ingenuity to fund a new UX/UI (User Experience/User Interface) Deep Dive Coding Bootcamp to help with economic opportunities for the next generation of rural students throughout New Mexico.
The funding is being delivered through The Thoma Equity Grant Rural Deep Dive Scholarship Program and the nearly $100,000 gift will create 16 full scholarships, pay for equipment like laptops, and even help with other expenses such as internet connections. The part-time UX/UI bootcamp curriculum—which runs this fall and is open to students 18- to 29-years-old —focuses on the intersection of art and technology and will prepare the students for a variety of tech jobs in user experience, user interface, user research, and graphic design.
“CNM Ingenuity has a history of working closely with philanthropic partners and we knew a partnership would allow alignment of CNMI interests with the core aims of the Thoma Equity Grant to increase opportunities for quality education and employment,” says Sarah Rovang, the Thoma Foundation Program Officer.
The Thoma Foundation chose CNMI as a partner because they were impressed with Ingenuity’s commitment to its students both in class and beyond. They saw that 80 percent of Deep Dive graduates are able to find their desired employment after graduation and expect the same will be true for the new rural UX/UI cohort.
“CNMI’s devotion to technical coaching, mentorship, and alumni resources creates the support system that students need to succeed both in the program and in achieving their long-term career goals,” says Nicole Danti, PR and Communications Manager at the Thoma Foundation.
CNMI is excited about the partnership as well because it allows the program to further develop its commitment to working with specific communities throughout the state who can benefit from adaptive, in-depth, school-to-job training.
“The Deep Dive team has lots of experience in serving targeted populations in partnership with grantees and we appreciate the opportunity to be able to do so again this fall,” says Andrea Sisneros-Wichman, the Deep Dive Program Director. “We’re excited that this bootcamp is entirely online, which will allow us to effectively serve these rural communities.”
The UX/UI bootcamp runs Aug. 23-Dec. 3 and students will meet Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:30-8:30 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Applications are now open and the application deadline is July 12. Interested students who have a high school diploma and are ages 18-29 are encouraged to learn more and apply here.