Founding Supporter AT&T, Adobe and the Prudential Foundation Contribute Nearly $3 Million to Create GWC Alumni Network
More than 20 Major Tech Companies Pledge to Hire GWC Alumni
Houston, TX (October 15, 2015) – Girls Who Code (GWC), the national non-profit organization working to close the gender gap in technology, today announced the formation of a nationwide Alumni Network for Girls Who Code program graduates. Founding supporter AT&T, The Prudential Foundation and Adobe have so far contributed $2.7 million to ensure that young female graduates of Girls Who Code programs have clear pathways to careers in the computing field.
Girls Who Code also announced more than 20 leading technology companies have pledged to share paid internships and other opportunities with Girls Who Code alumni as part of the organization’s ‘Hire Me’ campaign – further cementing a college to career pipeline for young women majoring in technology and engineering. Girls Who Code Founder Reshma Saujani made the announcement at the annual Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing Conference in Houston. Companies can sign the Hire Me pledge at www.girlswhocode.com/hireme.
“Girls Who Code is on track to educate 10,000 girls in 40 states by the end of the year – the same number of total female computer science graduates in 2015. With today’s commitments from the country’s leading technology companies, we are one step closer to ensuring these young women have more opportunities than ever to follow their passions and pursue careers in computer science fields,” said Reshma Saujani, Founder and CEO of Girls Who Code. “I want to thank all of our partners for rising to the challenge and following through on their promise to narrow the gender gap in technology. We are building a generation of female coders, and we are excited to create new openings for them to further develop their professional skills.”
"Diversity and inclusiveness are essential in every industry, and they are critical in tech," said Jack Dorsey, Co-Founder and CEO of Square and Twitter. "Building companies that are as diverse as the people who rely on our products is not only the right thing to do, it is good business. Girls Who Code's 'Hire Me' campaign helps us create a stronger community around girls and women that will empower the next generation to be leaders in technology."
"Girls Who Code not only provides thousands of young women with the opportunity to learn and grow their skills in computer science, they also provide underrepresented groups with incredible access to the tech industry,” said Maxine Williams, Facebook Global Director of Diversity. “Having the opportunity to learn and work at tech companies is a valuable experience, and Facebook looks forward to continuing to collaborate with GWC as they work to close the gender gap in technology.”
Ninety percent of Girls Who Code graduates have declared, or intend to declare, a major or minor in computer science. The Girls Who Code Alumni Network will foster a sisterhood of budding technologists, who can help each other be successful in their field, find job openings and opportunities, and continue to improve their coding skills.
“As a company committed to building a diverse workforce and as an early supporter of Girls Who Code, AT&T has seen first-hand the power of nurturing young women’s careers in high tech fields,” said Marissa Shorenstein, New York State President of AT&T, whose support of the Alumni Network is part of a new, $2 million total contribution through AT&T Aspire. “However, once the program ends, and the girls go back to their schools, there hasn’t been a formal mechanism in place to keep them connected. By supporting the Girls Who Code Alumni Network, we are giving these girls – the first of whom are just beginning their collegiate journey – a way to stay connected to the program and to each other.”
“Silicon Valley companies are clamoring for technical women,” said Donna Morris, Senior Vice President, People & Places at Adobe. “But not enough women are pursuing these careers. Girls Who Code has found the magic in building 1:1 relationships for girls with strong mentors, and their results have been impressive. We’re excited to invest in mentoring and eventually hiring Girls Who Code graduates as part of our workforce.”
“The Prudential Foundation’s support for Girls Who Code is aimed at not only helping solve the gender and skills gaps in STEM, but also solving a real business challenge for our industry,” said Lata Reddy, Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility and President of The Prudential Foundation. “Most people don’t think of a company like Prudential when they consider the impact of the tech skills shortage on the private sector, but the financial services industry is increasingly reliant on technology to deliver the convenient and customized services our customers demand.”
More than 20 leading technology companies have signed on to the “Hire Me” Campaign Pledge. The companies are:
- Capital One
- Electronic Arts
- Fiscal Note
- General Electric
- Goldman Sachs
- JP Morgan Chase
- Kate Spade & Company Foundation
About Girls Who Code
Girls Who Code is a national non-profit organization working to close the gender gap in technology. Through its Summer Immersion Program and Girls Who Code Clubs, the organization is leading the movement to inspire, educate, and equip young women with the computing skills to pursue 21st century opportunities. By the end of 2015, Girls Who Code will have reached 10,000 girls in more than 40 states. Additional information is available at www.girlswhocode.com.