TEJ trains individuals from underrepresented communities to become software engineers through its in-house nine-month full time fellowship.
At TEJ Fellowship, we recruit and invest in candidates from marginalized and underrepresented communities in technology. We are looking for candidates including but not limited to the following qualifications:
WHAT IS TEJ?
Technology for Equity and Justice (TEJ), a US based organization, has developed a nine month coding fellowship for students from marginalized and underrepresented communities. The fellows will be trained from little or no coding knowledge to fully capable software engineers earning competitive salaries. Fellows will be paid a stipend of Rs. 15,000.00 a month throughout the program.
The technology industry has constantly faced a shortage of good software engineers. As the supply of computer engineering graduates has not been able to meet the demand, the last 10 years has seen the emergence of coding bootcamps in North America and Europe that are conducted in terms of six months or less. The bootcamp has proven to be a successful model, and employers now recruit from them just as they do from universities. These coding bootcamps provide unmatched return on investment as they prepare students for jobs in a short period.
In Nepal, the representation of historically marginalized communities in the technology sector has been dramatically lower than those from privileged class and caste groups due to structural barriers, including a lack of access to information and resources. To address this issue and close the gap, TEJ has created a nine month coding fellowship designed to ensure the success of students from underrepresented groups and communities.
HOW DOES TEJ WORK?
Globally, the tech industry is acknowledging the lack of diversity within the sector and companies are creating resource groups to increase their diversity. TEJ is focusing on the supply side to train highly competent software engineers from underrepresented communities by:
2022 TEJ Fellows
Amir Thapa is originally from Hetauda, and now lives in Lalitpur. He completed his Bachelor's degree in Engineering from Nepal College of Information Technology. He has experience working professionally as a network engineer, but was looking to make a career change to Software Engineering which brought him to TEJ Fellowship. In his free time he enjoys playing guitar, as he loves music. He is also adept at handling impromptu and urgent client questions.
Manjila Nepali is from Khandbari, Sankhuwasabha. She is currently completing her Bachelor's degree in Computer Science and Information Technology from Amrit Science Campus (ASCOL), while also working at Trilogy Digital Media. She is an experienced sales and marketing consultant with a history of working in educational consultancy. In the little spare time she has, she loves traveling and has visited many places in Nepal. She also enjoys reading books and is very passionate about coding.
Niru Magar is an avid outdoors person with a Masters degree in Zoology from Tribhuvan University. Originally from Siraha, she loves hiking, reading books, and exploring new things. Before the Fellowship, she has worked as a researcher and a high school teacher. She has always been interested in programming and learnt it on her own. If you ever get stuck in Shivpuri National Park past dusk, Niru can advise you on calmly finding your way back home.
Pitamber Rana completed his Bachelor's degree in Business Management from Tribhuvan Multiple Campus in Tansen, Palpa, which is also his hometown. Though he has no formal experience in software development, he loves working with computers and enjoys exploring new things. He also loves sports, traveling, photography and editing.
Originally from Janakpur, Pratiksha Rai has a Bachelors of Arts degree from Trichandra College. Her professional career up to this point has been in the NGO sector. She has always been interested in programming, but felt that her non-technical background and lack of guidance would pose a challenge to her entry into the field. Besides coding, she is interested in understanding social, economic, and cultural institutions. Even without a technical background, she has been known to provide practical technical solutions to real world problems in her professional work.
Raju Lama is from Dolakha, and currently resides in Ranibari, Kathmandu. He completed his Bachelor's degree in Arts and Humanities from Ratna Rajya Laxmi Campus. He has always been a tech enthusiast and deeply interested in computer technology, learning on his own for the past few years. Besides that, he loves to read books. Though he has faced challenges, Raju has resolved to accept them and sees it as something that makes him unique.
Sandhya Yadav's family comes from Birgunj. She completed her Bachelor's degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering. After remaining as a research enthusiast in her own field for a while now, she is highly enthusiastic about accepting new challenges and getting into the coding game. She is passionate about songs, music and language with a dash of reading in solitude thrown in.
Subash Tamang completed his Bachelor's degree in Computer Science from Patan College for Professional Studies. He is well-trained in technical troubleshooting and knows how to expertly break down problems. He has worked as a Software Engineer intern. In his free time, he learns more programming skills and is currently working on his own web-based voting system that integrates facial recognition. He is skilled in solving everyday unexpected problems with technical solutions.
Sudesh Mate comes from Biratchowk, Morang and is completing his Bachelor's degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering from the Institute of Engineering, Purwanchal campus, in Dharan. He is fond of computers and spends much of his time in front of his laptop learning different software technologies. He is also known to be very resourceful in times of need, and maybe will share his tips with you.
Benju Lwagun is a writer at Global Voices. In her articles, she focuses on the issues of Migrant Workers, Women's Rights, and Caste Based Discriminations of Nepal. She has a master’s degree in Mass Communication and Journalism and has more than 6 years of work experience in the Development Communications and Public Relations Sector in Nepal and Myanmar. She is currently based in Amman, Jordan. In her free time, Benju likes to sing, listen to music and read books.
Pawan Benjamin is a professional musician and a technology educator.
Puran is a Dad and a Software Engineer currently living in Walnut Creek, California. He is a Co-founder/Head of Engineering at a health-tech company providing market access platform for the prescription drug manufacturers. He’s been working in the Software Industry for almost 15 years now and has worked for small/large companies like Yahoo, Intuit, and Shutterfly before co-founding Phil in 2015. He’s also a founding member/president of PDRC that provides access and support to the students from the marginalized community for their higher education. He’s one of the very early and very few members from the marginalized community in Nepal to graduate from the Institute of Engineering, Pulchowk Campus on a full scholarship by securing the first rank in a nationwide entrance examination. He always felt the lack of good mentorship and guidance throughout his academic and professional career and feels strongly about solving it for the younger generation of students and professionals. That’s one big reason he started HamroGroup.org. If he’s not playing with his son, he loves to read and build things on the side to learn, explore, and help others.
Rushil Shakya is a technology educator who is passionate about making the sector more inclusive. He has worked in leadership capacities in large fortune 500 company as well as in technology startup. He has also volunteered his time and expertise for a number of social justice organizations in Nepal and the United States.
Aditi Mody is currently on the Board of Trustee at the University of Chicago Trust ( since February 2018). Aditi was the Former Executive Director at the University of Chicago Trust (2016- 2021) where she provided strategic and administrative leadership in promoting research, education, and engagement of the University in multi sector policy and program implementation within the region. She was also the Former Executive Director of the UChicago Center in India Private Limited (2016-2020) where she worked closely with the University of Chicago’s academic and administrative leaders, to support University of Chicago initiatives, develop and expand academic collaborations and foster collaborative programming and policy engagement in India and South Asia. Aditi also served as Country Director for India with the US-India Business Council (USIBC) at the US Chamber of Commerce. At USIBC, Aditi was responsible for establishing the India office of the Council and growing the commercial and strategic partnership between the countries by leading charge on bilateral policy advocacy issues for USIBC’s diverse membership with a variety of stakeholders across a range of sectors. She served on Institute of International Education’s (IIE) Cargill Global Scholars Selection Committee (April 2021) and was on the National Screening Committee for the Fulbright-Nehru CII Fellowship for Leadership Management (2010-2011). Aditi currently serves on the Women Leadership Board at the Women and Public Policy Program at the Harvard Kennedy School as well as the Board of Trustees at Habiart Foundation (which promotes contemporary Indian Art). She holds a M.A. in International Relations from the University of Chicago (USA) and Bachelor of Science degree in Economics from Bristol University (UK).
Amy Paul is a communication and fundraising professional who has helped advance immigrant justice, community-driven public safety, and workers’ rights. She has worked for nonprofits including Possible Health and the National Center for Law and Economic Justice. She has also served as a board member for Adhikaar for Human Rights. Amy holds a Master’s in International Affairs from the New School and an undergraduate degree in public policy from The University of Chicago. She lives in Jackson Heights, Queens.
Barsha is a product designer based in New York City. She graduated from Parsons School of Design with an MFA in Design and Technology and currently is working as a UX/UI designer and Front-End Developer at a nonprofit organization. She is also an avid guitarist and a movie critique.
Brittin is a development professional with extensive experience in Nepal. She holds a master's degree in international public policy from Johns Hopkins University.
Navaraj is a development professional with over twenty-five years of leadership experience in Asia and Africa. Currently, he is a consultant for NGO management, strategy, and leadership, and he coaches and mentors senior managers. He is interested in organizational development, operational management, organizational change and leadership mentoring.
Prarthana (she/her) is a first-generation Nepali-American, born and raised in the U.S., and currently serves as the Director of Campaigns & Communications at Adhikaar, a community and worker center that organizes the Nepali-speaking immigrant and refugee community. Prarthana brings to TEJ a decade of experience in building campaigns and bridging communications for social justice movements spanning from worker rights, immigration, environmental justice, police accountability, and public health. She currently resides in Queens, New York City.
Ramesh Singh is currently a freelance consultant and volunteer living in and working from Asia (Bangkok – Kathmandu). Strategy review, evaluation and development, public policy advocacy, NGO design, governance and architecture, integrity and accountability systems, strategic leadership teaching, training and mentoring are his areas of interest, learning and expertise. Ramesh Singh has worked in leadership roles at country, regional and global levels in development, human rights and environmental international organizations. He has lived in and worked from South and Southeast Asia; West, East and Southern Africa; North America; and Western Europe. He has also served in governance roles of various international organisations. Ramesh was educated as an agronomist/seed technologist. He has been a visiting fellow at Institute of Development Studies UK; Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs US and, Harvard Kennedy School US. He has done recent consultancy and pro-bono work at Amnesty International, Africans Rising Movement, Greenpeace India, ActionAid, WaterAid, International Development Economist Associates and Women or Women International.
Todd Rodgers is the CTO at Haven Technologies, a new SaaS company that leverages an industry leading technology platform to help carriers deliver new products and digitally transform their operations. Prior to launching Haven Technologies, Todd was CTO at Haven Life, a life insurance startup that takes a customer-centric, digital approach to improving the life insurance buying experience. In this role, Todd oversaw development teams to ensure delivery of a next generation customer experience in the life insurance industry. Todd has extensive leadership experience in defining and delivering large-scale strategic technology platforms in financial companies. Prior to joining Haven Life, he was at Citi Private Bank where he managed global development teams that worked to address complex financial needs of high-value clients.
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