Break Through Tech bridges the gap

Break Through Tech DC seeks to bring more students from underrepresented groups into computer science and technology disciplines.

Women In Computing

George Mason University and Break Through Tech are working to diversify the D.C. region’s tech ecosystem

Funding for this initiative is provided by Break Through Tech as part of Gender Equality in Tech (GET) Cities.

Break Through Tech DC propels students who identify as women and non-binary into computing degrees and careers in techthrough curriculum innovation, career access, and community building. 


Who we are

Break Through Tech DC propels women into tech careers through educational programs, work opportunities, and community building.

The grant’s goal is to increase the number of these students graduating with a tech degree at Mason by 12.5 percentage points by 2026.

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The demand for technology talent is unprecedented. This need is coming at a time when the percentage of college degrees awarded to women is near a historic high of 57 percent.


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The Problem
However, the percentage of college degrees in computer science and related disciplines awarded to women is only 20 percent.
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The Solution
At Break Through Tech DC, our main goal is to increase the number of Mason women graduating with a degree in computer science and related disciplines by 12.5 percent by 2026.

Mason’s Break Through Tech program will include:

  • A summer program for rising first-year students designed to ignite interest in tech by teaching them how to code real-world applications that are mission-driven;

  • New, innovative introductory computer science sequences;

  • A paid, three-week mini-internship program called a “Sprinternship®” that gives first- and second-year students a resume credential and real-world experience to make them more competitive when applying for a paid summer tech internship; and

  • The development of a networked community of individuals who identify as women and non-binary—both peer-to-peer and student-to-professional—in the D.C. metropolitan area to support, engage, and motivate one another.

“GET DC will impact an emerging tech hub that’s bustling with opportunity for women and underrepresented groups in an industry that continues to trend more male and white. Break Through Tech will work towards tackling two key hurdles for women—access and experience.”

Judith Spitz, founder and executive director at Break Through Tech

Departments participating in this program include the Department of Computer Science and the Department of Information Sciences and Technology.