Forge
About Us
Forge is a 501(c)(3) non-profit school that prepares students with the modern skills they need to make an impact in the world. Over 1,000 students each year learn things like design, marketing, and data science through fun, engaging, community-driven projects. Through our programs, projects, and community, we strive to empower students to realize their own potential while creating opportunities for them to make an impact for good.

Our unique project-based teaching model enables our students to explore their interests and build new skills alongside like-minded peers. Our non-profit model also enables us to keep our programs extremely low cost (or even free) to anyone and everyone.

Together, we're building a community of kickass makers and creators who are prepared to solve the world's big problems. We'd love for you to join us.
Our Story
Forge (formerly HackCville) was founded in the summer of 2012 by a group of college students and young professionals with a common mission: creating a space for students to learn and experience things that just aren't possible in a normal classroom.

Back then, the general idea was simple: bring smart, go-getter people together and give them the space and skills to make whatever they can dream up. Our programs quickly became an attractive way for students to learn new skills and meet similarly passionate people in a low-stakes, fun environment.

We now teach the full range of modern, digital skills needed in today's world, from UX design to data science to software engineering (and much more). Over 1,000 students are involved in our programs each year, and we work with over 200 startups, tech firms, and non-profits to help us get our students into impactful, meaningful work.

Today, our community of over 2,000 thrives in both our online and in-person spaces. Wherever you are, you will always have a dedicated community in your corner.



Why the name Forge?
The name Forge evokes a sense of creation and progress. Creating new things, forging new connections, building new ideas, always moving forward - these are all ideas that are core to our mission and values. We feel that Forge speaks to the hardworking, scrappy, and ambitious attitude of our students.
Our Impact
Students
We run semester-long skills courses, a summer internship program, and weekend trips to cities with startup hubs. We want to set up our grads with skills that will lead to awesome careers, tech-related or not.
Companies
Through our Launch program, we work to match top talent with impactful internships and full time jobs at companies across industries, from small startups to large corporations.
Communities
Forge empowers students to give back. We help grow local startup ecosystems and support other nonprofits by training and matching top students with local companies and causes.
1,000+

students served each year through our 3 programs
200+

tech companies, startups, and nonprofits work with us for internships and full-time jobs
1,500+

alumni in our network
Testimonials
My favorite part about being involved with Forge is the people. Everyone I meet is extremely bright, motivated, and talented, and it was refreshing and inspiring to be surrounded by such an incredible community.
Anna Kuno
FORGE MEMBER
Forge does an amazing job with experiential learning, certainly in the kind of skill sets that we talk about being important in tomorrow's economy.
Brendan Richardson
CEO OF ASTRAEA
As we seek to build our creative economy, Forge will play a crucial role in training and keeping talent here in Charlottesville.
Mike Signer
FORMER MAYOR OF CHARLOTTESVILLE
Forge has by far been the most rewarding thing I have done with my time at UVA. I really wish I had gotten involved sooner. There is something for everyone here. The people you meet will inspire you and you will always be learning!
Bailey Snead
FORGE ALUM
Our Team
Forge was built for students by students. Our unique student-and-alumni hybrid leadership model allows members to take full ownership of how the organization is run each day. Our program leads, engineers, account managers, course directors, marketing team, Launch coordinators, and other leading roles are all held by students.

We believe the best way to continue learning is to pay it forward and teach others what you've learned. We give members a chance to do that right away. After you complete your first program at Forge, you're given opportunities to join the leadership team. Just a year after joining Forge you can end up in a paid leadership role where you can shape the experience of future students. Forge currently employs over 70 student leaders each year who continue their own learning by teaching others.


Help us build the world's most student-centric school
Each year 1,000 students learn things like design, marketing, and data science through fun, engaging, community-driven projects.

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