“I Was Inspired By Black Panther’s Sister Shuri” 12-Year-Old Launches Tech Initiative Afro Bot Boyz

April 3, 2018  |  


How many more people can the film Black Panther inspire? Let me count the ways.

As reported by Fox 9, a 12-year-old boy from Minneapolis, MN was so inspired by Black Panther that he launched a tech initiative called Afro Bot Boyz. The goal is to encourage black boys and girls to pursue careers in technology.

D.J. Comeaux is really about that life, meaning that this pre-teen wants everyone to know that the love for technology, robotics in particular, isn’t exclusive to a few groups. And with Afro Bot Boyz, he wants to expose how true that is.

“I wanted to boost the confidence of people that look like me, more likely to be interested in being in robotics,” he told Fox 9.

And his own confidence in creating this initiative was ignited when he saw the film Black Panther. You would assume that since he is male, he would have been inspired by the main male character King T’Challa.

But no.

D.J. saw no gender when it came to the genius behind all of Wakanda’s technological advancements. So, his hero – or shero – is Princesss Shuri.

“[I was inspired] not by Black Panther the superhero, but his sister Shuri,” he said. “She used to create all of the designs and technology so I kind of really like that.”

How many times do you hear a boy say that his hero is a girl? Heck, how many times do you hear a man say that a woman is his hero (outside of her being his mother or wife)? It is stories like these that continue to show the power of Black Panther, so thanks to a visionary like director Ryan Coogler, he is even challenging what a hero looks like.

And now real-life heroes like D.J. are rising up. His afro bot boy logo, designed by him, is a winking cartoon that looks like D.J. without glasses. On his website, the initiative motto declares, “Yes, you CAN have an afro and build robots!” I can only imagine how many other kids he will energize. Too hype about this!

His mother, Kayann Comeaux, has been very supportive of her son branching out on his own at such a young age because why not?

“We support this industry, why are we not supporting them to create and work behind the scenes and create the coding, the tech, and the language to have their own companies?” she asked.

To learn more about Afro Bot Boyz, click here. You can also check out the inspiring story below.

Renese spends her early mornings writing, her days securing insurance for TV shows, and her in-betweens blogging about the silliness and seriousness of life on her blog.
Follow Renese on Twitter: @reneseford

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