This post was co-written by Adina Cretu, Angela Gilhotra, and Vivek Singh.

All costs for accepted female candidates and from underrepresented backgrounds for the KERNEL Fellowship will be covered by KERNEL, with support from she(256) and MetaGammaDelta.

Hey Gitcoiners & Gitcoinerettes!

Back in December 2017, when Gitcoin first met the interwebs, we celebrated every time we saw 100 more coders, designers or thinkers join our community. Almost 3 years later, we’re at 50k developers around the world. It’s beginning to feel like one giant, tightly knit oyster of open source enthusiasts.

We’re seeing buidlers of all ages, from all over the planet and with all types of skills and expertise levels boarding the Gitcoin shuttle. It makes us proud and hopeful to notice the diversity in our community.

But we’re always aiming for a melting pot – more nations, more colors, more identities, more genders.

As a diverse team ourselves (we work across continents, genders, races, ages and backgrounds), we know the best ideas and results happen when 2 simple requirements are met:

  1. We nourish great ideas from the grassroots, up
  2. We let our differences complete each other

KERNEL is designed to make these 2 success criteria meet and our scholarship program is one step in our commitment to an extremely diverse cohort.

A Diverse KERNEL = More Female Founders

As of 2020, just 14% of the software engineers in the USA and 17% of IT&C specialists in Europe are women. And while 74% of girls are interested in STEM and computer science, their interest is not yet reflected in the structure of companies, communities and teams out there.

Similar statistics show for people of color. Black employees represent 1% – 6% of the technical roles within big tech companies, despite making up 13% of the US Population.

We know Rome wasn’t built in a day – it did take way longer than it took blockchain to surface and challenge the status quo. But we also know everything grows from a seed. And we’re inspired by the success of community efforts before us, including Meta Gamma Delta, She256, Black Girls CODE.

We chose The KERNEL Scholarship as another step towards meaningful diversity – calling all women and people of color with a passion for Web 3, open-source, and product development to join KERNEL cohort.

The KERNEL experience doesn’t end with the cohort. It continues – we hope – throughout your lifetime. The fellowship is a work-in-progess to cultivate a culture that allows social currency and financial capital to come together, creating opportunities and group resiliency that would have been impossible to achieve alone.

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” – African Proverb

Diversity is a process

This is just one of the steps we’re taking to make Gitcoin a creative and inclusive hub for everybody passionate about open source. Because just like the software says – we’re open.

And while this is not a simple conversation, we feel we need to simply hack the bias. So tell us your ideas, your experiences and your thoughts on Townsquare.

If you know any potential interested candidates, please let them know about the KERNEL scholarship. Block 2, our second cohort, will be open for their applications on a rolling basis through kickoff on Jan 15th.

If you’re considering KERNEL — we’d ask one question:

If you were in a room with 300 of the brightest minds in Web 3 for 8 weeks, what would you build?