In Nancy Mwirotsi's native Kenya, technology created by a Kenyan allows anybody to move money from one account to another using his mobile phone. It illustrates to Mwirotsi what is possible if more African children learn how to write computer code at an early age.
Her new Des Moines-based program, Pi 515, looks to help refugees and other minorities do just that.
"It is not only teaching them to program," she said. "It is teaching them to solve problems and become critical thinkers. These kids know math, English, science. But when you look at the future, everything is running on technology. If they don't learn it, they will be stuck."