This New York Organization Teaches More Than 350 Autistic Brooklyn Teens How to Thrive In Digital World
Tech Kids Unlimited was started eight years ago by Beth Rosenberg and now is based at NYU Tandon.
January 05, 2018 at 2:44 pm
In 2009, Beth Rosenberg's love for her son inspired her to create an organization that would help children like her son, Jack, and others navigate through the world.
And like that Tech Kids Unlimited was born. Rosenberg's organization offers two programs for kids as young as seven years old and teens up to 20 that is called the T3 Digital Agency. According to Technical.ly, the programs teach students graphic design, video editing, game development and more skills that could help them launch a career.
Each student has an education plan that is created to fit their needs and learning abilities. Classes are taught on weekends, after school and as summer camps.“When you’re a teen and you have autism there’s very little to do after school during the day. You don’t play sports or go to Starbucks or Terminal 5. You go to your room and play video games,” Rosenberg explained. “We want to engage these teens, we want to help them think about their own futures. Gone are the days of residential programs. How are we going to integrate young people with autism into society?”
Today, our Creative Tech Teen Interns made great headway fleshing out design plans to their app for @SPARKforAutism. By the end of the day the whole board was filled with ideas! pic.twitter.com/ktDtOU7CEM— Tech Kids Unlimited (@TechKidsU) December 1, 2017
Initially, the organization was small with only Rosenberg and her son and his friends involved. There were only two investors and $30,000 to get the ball rolling. But it grew fast and parents wanted in. Now there are funds upward of half of a million dollars and 350 students being served.
She has also helped students with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) through her programs. By 2013, Tech Kids Unlimited was brought into NYU Tandon School of Engineering.
So far students have used their new tech skills to earn cash and win competitions like the Connect Ability Challenge. Their winning mobile app, LOLA, took home prizes because of its “social and emotional solutions” for people on the autism spectrum.