Google, UNCF and Thurgood Marshall College Fund Announce Pathways to Tech Initiative

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Google, UNCF (United Negro College Fund) and Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) announced “Pathways to Tech,” a new initiative designed to increase HBCU institutional and student capacity, aid job seekers in identifying tech roles, and foster the career growth and retention of Black talent.

To drive this work, an HBCU Tech Advisory Board will be established with Google as a founding corporate member. The HBCU Tech Advisory Board will offer strategic insight in shaping these efforts, and will report to an HBCU Presidents’ Tech Council, co-chaired by Dr. Michael L. Lomax of UNCF and Dr. Harry L. Williams of TMCF.

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A steering committee will ensure programming meets the needs of HBCU students and drives the work forward. Initial members of the steering committee are Melonie Parker, Chief Diversity Officer (Google), Dr. Kamau Bobb, Director, Global Lead for Diversity Strategy and Research (Google); Maria Medrano, Senior Director, Diversity Strategy, (Google), Dr. Chad Womack, Senior Director, National STEM Programs and Initiatives (UNCF), Angela Van Croft, Director, Corporate and Foundation Relations (UNCF), Dr. Eric D. Hart, Chief Programs Officer (TMCF). Google is also forming an internal advisory committee that will consist of senior vice presidents across Google and help to organize these efforts across the company.

This initiative will include a deepened focus on existing programming between Google and HBCUs, including Tech Exchange, Google In Residence, and the Grow with Google Career Readiness Program, as well as the development of new initiatives to help provide access and opportunities for underrepresented talent to join the tech industry.

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“Google is proud to continue our long-standing partnership with historically Black colleges and universities with the Pathways to Tech initiative. As a company, we remain committed to providing access and opportunities for Black students in the tech industry.” said Melonie Parker, Chief Diversity Officer at Google.

“We believe this growing partnership will benefit students of color, HBCUs and the nation as a whole by investing in better futures,” said Dr. Michael L. Lomax, president and CEO, UNCF. “Google’s investment will help our institutions leverage technology to improve their ability to attract, nurture and grow talent, which ultimately empowers our students to find opportunities that might not otherwise have been available to them.”

“The Pathways to Tech Initiative is a critical next step in our partnership with Google,” said Dr. Harry L. Williams, president and CEO, TMCF. “This partnership brings together all the voices that are essential in formulating and executing a plan that will move our DEI agenda forward and lead to increased development, hiring, and retention of HBCU talent.”

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