Jan 19, 2024 - Business

Former X engineer launches tech bootcamp in Charlotte

Dark Mode founder, Lou Kromah addresses the crowd at a Dark Mode networking night. Dark Mode's next networking night is Jan. 25. Photo: Courtesy of Dark Mode

Dark Mode founder, Lou Kromah addresses the crowd at a Dark Mode networking night. Dark Mode's next networking night is Jan. 25. Photo: Courtesy of Dark Mode

A former engineer at X, previously called Twitter, will launch a tech bootcamp in Charlotte next month.

What’s happening: Charlotte native Lusenii “Lou” Kromah’s 12-week bootcamp called Dark Mode will be an introduction to UX design, or user experience design, which includes the process of designing both mobile and web-based products.

  • The Black-led bootcamp aims to make tech approachable. Participants don’t need prior training or a degree in tech.

Why it matters: Technology plays a massive role in everyday life, but there’s a lack of Black representation in the tech workforce.

By the numbers: Black professionals account for only 7% of the computing workforce nationwide, according to the NAACP.

Context: Kromah is a Cigna mobile product manager by day. You’ll also find him at the Harvey B. Gantt Center as a teaching artist.

  • Kromah grew up in east Charlotte before leaving to earn his undergraduate degree at North Carolina A&T State University and his masters at Georgia Tech. He moved back to Charlotte in 2023 and created Dark Mode.
  • Dark Mode is a community for Black tech professionals, and it routinely hosts free networking events. The goal is to build a stronger tech community for everyone in Charlotte.

Details: Dark Mode’s bootcamp runs Feb. 26-May 14. It will be in person at Tabbris Co-Working. There will be a 25-participant cap. Registration costs $7,500.

  • Participants will build a portfolio consisting of three projects.
  • Ideally, what students build will translate into real-world products, all of which focus on Charlotte, like a running app for Mad Miles Run Club, for instance.

The bottom line: Charlotte is changing— and Kromah feels like he is part of the change, he tells Axios.

What’s next: Dark Mode’s next networking night is Jan. 25 from 6-9pm. The location is TBD.

Dark Mode networking night.
Photo: Courtesy of Dark Mode
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