Earlier this month, The Hidden Genius Project had the incredible opportunity to participate in AfroTech, the nation’s largest black technology conference in Oakland, CA. AfroTech is known to be the premiere technology gathering for people of color and in it’s fourth year, the conference moved to Oakland with a goal to directly impact the community it seeks to serve. This led AfroTech to partner with  minority-owned businesses and community-based organizations like The Hidden Genius Project.

Youth Pitch Competition

For the first time in AfroTech history, the conference featured a Youth Pitch Competition presented by the David E. Glover Technology Center and sponsored by Blue Shield of California. This competition highlighted students from Castlemont High SchoolDavid E. Glover Technology Center, and The Hidden Genius Project where they pitched their business venture ideas to a room filled with over 1oo+ people. Representing The Hidden Genius Project in the competition was OAK7 Hidden Genius – Hesten Parrish and RICH2 Hidden Genius Alumni – Jayden Cummings and Brandon Bazile.

After all the pitches were given, Brandon Bazile was selected as the winnner for his Meal Swap business venture and will be featured on Blavity. Congratulations Brandon!

AfroTech was a great experience. It was unreal seeing so many black faces come together to define the next generation of black technology.

Kyron Loggins, OAK4 Hidden Genius Alum & Youth Educator

It was great seeing blacks folks give other black folks opportunities to network and to see what's possible.

Zebreon Wallace, OAK2 Hidden Genius Alum & Youth Educator

Genius Design Thinking Presentation

How can we use design thinking to create problem solvers around the world? 

This was the question our group of Geniuses asked a packed audience of 100+ business professionals as they took the stage for the second time at AfroTech. James Green, OAK4 Hidden Genius Alum, Jayden Cummings, RICH2 Hidden Genius Alum, and Kyron Loggins, OAK4 Hidden Genius Alum, moderated an open discussion about their experiences of leading empowering deisgn thinking workshops to youth of color locally, nationally, and globally. This community-based design thinking panel introduced the audience on ways to identify issues in their communities, brainstorm solutions, and leverage resources using technology to solve those problems.

“We are the experts of our own communities
and we can create solutions to support OUR PEOPLE.”

James Green, OAK4 Hidden Genius Alum

Special thanks to Blavity Inc., Kaiser Permanente, and Chan Zuckerberg Initiative for helping to make this possible.