I recently visited Washington DC for a CODE.org event to learn how Lumity can help more schools to integrate computer science into classrooms. This trip was extra special because I was joined by Jonathan, a high school senior who has participated in Lumity’s Student Based Enterprise developing WordPress websites for local small businesses, in addition to a colleague and two Lumity Board members. It was Jonathan’s first visit to DC and all of our first time getting a private tour of the West Wing – what a treat!


Our guide was Richard, a staff member who works in the office of Vice President Joe Biden. He shared stories as we got to peek into the Oval Office, Cabinet room, the door to the Situation Room, Press Room, Rose Garden, etc. The photography throughout the West Wing was so real you felt like you were experiencing the moment first hand. While standing outside the Oval Office by the Rose Garden, Richard shared a story about Vice President Bush being rushed back to DC shortly after President Reagan had been shot. Bush refused to be flown to the White House stating that only the President lands on the South Lawn.

Later that day, the five of us took an open trolley ride to see the monuments lit up at night. Breathtaking and inspiring doesn’t adequately express my experience as we visited the Abraham Lincoln, Rev. Martin Luther King, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorials. You could feel the enormity of the impact that these leaders had on our country during their time as well as today.

This DC experience touched me in a way that my other trips hadn’t. I felt the enormous courage, tenacity and vision that these leaders had to address the inequalities faced during their time. It must have felt daunting, lonely and even unsettling to take on the movements each championed to make America more just.

Now that Lumity has adopted a new mission, I feel a huge sense of responsibility to join these leaders in addressing the inequalities of our education for underserved youth.  I am determined to step out of my comfort zone, take risks, and hold high expectations of myself, my colleagues, board members, teachers, students, administrators, parents, school districts, volunteers and politicians to prepare our youth for successful careers and lives. Settling for less is not an option.

If you want to join me and Lumity on this journey, contact me at [email protected].

Kara Kennedy
Executive Director, Lumity

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