Data Activism Program

Katherine Ouellette

My name is Raechel Walker. I'm a PhD student in the Personal Robots group. Here is a short description of my Data Activism Program:

The Data Activism Research Study aims to teach African American high school students in Boston and Cambridge to use computer programming, data science, and art to challenge power inequalities, such as racism. Additionally, the high school students will collaborate with community organizations on their projects that require data analysis. Community partners and students will be part of every aspect of the research project, such as conducting background research about a specific example of systemic racism, finding a data set, and implementing a data analysis. Raechel’s research study will evaluate how African American students progress in various liberatory computing tools, such as fostering a sound racial identity, developing critical consciousness, cultivating a liberation-centered academic identity, and honing activism skills.

Overall, the project will introduce students to critical thinking and teach them the computer programming skills required to challenge social injustice  If you're interested in learning about the summer data activism class that was taught in 2022, please read this MIT News article. Additionally, if you would like to see the summer data activism student projects in more detail, here is a link to a brochure of their work for your review. 

Also, please watch the video below about the data activism program: 

I would love to provide additional information and answer any questions you might have. Please email me at if you have any questions. We hope you can join us. 

Data Activism in the News: