Google, Howard University Open New Chapter

By Paula Bernier

While many Silicon Valley companies over the years have come out with diversity reports and talked about their interest and efforts in providing more workplace opportunities and support for minorities, a recent Venture Beat article by Paul Sawers says there’s been little actual advancement in diversity on this front. Recognizing this, Google recently expanded its relationship with historically black Howard University of Washington, D.C.

This new effort has Howard University opening a new campus – called Howard West – at Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. There, rising juniors and seniors in computer science can participate in a three-month program. These students will be provided with generous stipends toward housing and living expenses, tutoring from senior Google engineers, and working space.

Blogging last week about this new effort Bonita Stewart, Google’s vice president of global partnerships and an alma mater of Howard, commented: “One of my all-time favorite quotes comes from acclaimed management consultant Peter Drucker: ‘The best way to predict the future is to create it.’ This is exactly the thinking behind Howard West, as the program is a way to create a future that reflects the values of diversity and inclusion Google has held since day one. With a physical space on campus where Howard students and Googlers can grow together, I can only imagine what innovation and creativity will come to light.”

While Howard West will bring the university, its students, and Google closer together, it’s just the latest collaboration between the organizations. Google in 2013 sent engineers to Howard University to help steer its introductory computer science courses in the right direction. That led to the Google in Residence program at an assortment of Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Speaking of tech diversity in the workplace, this is an area of great interest to TMC as well. That’s why we created the TMCnet Workplace Excellence Award for Tech Diversity.

We encourage you and your company to tell its story on how it’s working to improve diversity in the workplace. Applications for this award are open through April 28. For more information, and to apply, visit http://techculture.tmcnet.com/#techd

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