“I’m grateful for the opportunity to come into this program as strangers, but leave as brothers.”

– Glenn Ivory, OAK8 Hidden Genius Alum

On Thursday, September 23, 2021, we hosted our 2021 Annual End of Summer Celebration online in front of our friends, family, and community partners. The ingenuity and potential of our Black boys and young men shined throughout the evening as they shared their inspiring websites, gaming projects, and experiences in our program this past summer. Thank you all for supporting today’s generation of change makers.

Congratulations to Richard Kamau, OAK8 Hidden Genius Alum for going above and beyond in developing his end-of-year assignment and winning the Baba Eugene Lemon Award for the best technical app project this summer. Press the play button on the right to watch our Executive Director, Brandon Nicholson, Ph.D. surprise Richard with this special award.

” I loved having the opportunity to come up with my own ideas for my game. I think it’s important to allow someone to express themselves about what they love.”

– Richard Kamau, OAK8 Hidden Genius Alum

We celebrated the following 2021 milestones:

Record number of 160 students enrolled in our Immersion Program in 2021 across three sites in Oakland, Richmond, and Los Angeles

Inaugural Los Angeles cohort grad the entire 15-month program virtually since joining in June 2020

Doubled the size of incoming students at our Oakland site by adding a second concurrent cohort

Added an A.I. (artificial intelligence) project completion pathway for outgoing Hidden Geniuses

Facilitated web development and design thinking workshops across the country, including partnerships with Boston Public Schools, UC Berkeley’s Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Department, SoLa I CAN Foundation, Basketball Decoded with the Golden State Warriors, and a host of community programming partnerships throughout Los Angeles and the Bay Area

Graduated the inaugural cohort of Genius Founders in our Alumni Venture Seed Fund — a 5-month program designed to support the advancement of student alumni through the five phases of startup development

Scroll down below to watch inspiring highlights from our event.


“It has been great to have the support of The Hidden Genius Project to support not only my son, but for my family too.”

– Brandi Simpson, OAK7 Family Member

Hidden Geniuses, Hidden Genius Alumni, and Family Member Panel Discussions

Incoming Hidden Genius Panel

This panel discussion features incoming students representing three Immersion Program sites from Oakland, Richmond, and Los Angeles.

Outgoing Hidden Genius Panel

Congrats to our OAK8, RICH4, and LA1 Geniuses! Listen to this panel to hear about their experiences completing our 15-month program.

“I was expecting the program to be very basic, but after I joined and bonded with my brothers, I realized it was something I wanted to do.”

– Kaelan Lovan, RICH4 Hidden Genius

Alumni Venture Seed Fund Panel

Meet the Genius Founders from our inaugural Alumni Venture Seed Fund cohort as they share their experience in our newest startup program.

Hidden Genius Family Member Panel

Listen to our family members reflect on the key moments they started to recognize a change and growth in their Hidden Genius.

Special thanks to our generous sponsors for helping to make this event possible:

Make an impact today by becoming a recurring donor to
help future Geniuses step into the spotlight.