NexusLA releases plan to address systemic racism in tech entrepreneurship

    In response to the ongoing national conversation, NexusLA has taken a stance against “the tyranny, oppression, and violence that persons of color face as targets of systemic racism in our country” while pledging to address racial disparities within Baton Rouge’s technology-based entrepreneurial ecosystem through a list of action items.

    The organization, a subsidiary of Research Park Corporation, on Tuesday released a prepared statement pointing to “glaring inequalities” between black and white tech entrepreneurs, including a Founder Institute report showing that black employees fill only 2% of senior positions at venture capital firms and a Wired article reporting that, in 2017, only 9% of college students graduating with a degree in computer science were black.

    So far, NexusLA has identified the following action items to pursue:

    • Create a new website section to highlight resources for black entrepreneurs, such as online forums, minority entrepreneur support programs and funders that target minority owners;

    • Seek out black mentors to help advise and grow Louisiana’s black-owned entrepreneurial ventures, especially as they prepare to raise funding;

    • Host new virtual interactive events to discuss Equity in Entrepreneurship topics and collaborate on new ideas to improve the diversity of Louisiana’s entrepreneurial ecosystem;

    • Work with strategic community partners throughout the state to increase the number of minority applicants to NexusLA’s Apprenti Louisiana program;

    • Further expand NexusLA’s BizTech Fellows and Challenge programs;

    • Donate funds and youth mentorship to organizations that are providing opportunities for low- to moderate-income youth to learn about STEM career fields and entrepreneurship.

    Read NexusLA’s full statement.

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