The New York African American Business Leaders Fund, in partnership with Google, is providing more than 4,000 free tickets to the Oscar-nominated movie Hidden Figures for students in Chicago and San Francisco. This is an extension of a program, which has already provided 25,000 New York students with free screenings of the movie.
The overall goal of the program is to educate students about the many contributions made by African-Americans to science, technology, engineering, and math with the aim of inspiring more students to enter those fields. Like the 2015 project to screen Oscar-winner Selma – which reached 300,000 students across the country – the business leaders driving this initiative to hope to expand this program into more US cities in the coming months.
“We are proud to continue to support this excellent program and help in its expansion across the US,” said Rebecca Prozan, Chief of Public Policy and Government Affairs at Google. “As a company, Google has worked continuously to empower young people to embrace their talents and skills. We strongly believe that inspiring them with this story of triumph over adversity will help that effort.”
More than 4,000 tickets to Hidden Figures are on offer across the two cities. Tickets are being distributed via public school authorities and After School Matters: a non-profit, out-of-school activities organization operating in Chicago.
Mary Ellen Caron, CEO of After School Matters, said: “We are extremely grateful for this opportunity to inspire our students with this movie. Movies like Hidden Figures – which underscore the contributions of our unsung communities – can have a huge impact on our teens’ self-image. And as we know from our work, a positive self-image is so important to enabling our students to reach their full potential.”
This initiative also dovetails with Google’s launching of a new Made with Code project that invites teen girls and students everywhere to code a statement around Equality with themes from Hidden Figures.
Hidden Figures is the incredible untold story of Katherine G. Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monáe)—brilliant African-American women working at NASA, who served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, a stunning achievement that restored the nation’s confidence, turned around the Space Race, and galvanized the world. The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire generations to dream big.
About Hidden Figures
Based on a previously untold story, Hidden Figures highlights the achievements of African-American mathematicians and computer scientists in the 1960s. During World War II the aeronautics industry began hiring black female mathematicians to address an acute labor shortage. These pioneering engineers ended up at Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory where, in working for NASA, they enabled the U.S. to win the space race. Astronaut John Glenn thought them so critical that he required confirmation of critical orbit calculations from these women before he made his historic trip around the earth. The film is released by Twentieth Century Fox Film.