IBM, Facebook, Accenture, Microsoft, Expedia and AT&T are a few of more than 20 companies that have pledged to hire Girls Who Code alumni.
With an almost $3 million grant from Adobe, AT&T and The Prudential Foundation, Girls Who Code (GWC) will create the GWC Alumni Network, a program that will offer IT career opportunities in major tech companies, essentially linking tech education with tech careers for women.
Girls Who Code (GWC) helps more women enter tech careers by making access to Computer Science education easier. Companies like Pinterest, Sephora, IBM, Microsoft, GE, JP Morgan Chase, LinkedIn, Viacom, Twitter and Kate Spade & Company Foundation have already pledged to offer paid internships and other career opportunities to GWC alumni.
Marissa Shorenstein, New York State President of AT&T, emphasized that the Alumni Network offers both a tech talent pipeline and “a way to stay connected to the program and to each other.”
The “Hire Me’ campaign by the non-profit aims at “further cementing a college to career pipeline for young women majoring in technology and engineering,” the organization said. Reshma Saujani, Founder and CEO of Girls Who Code, detailed the career opportunities that the project makes possible for thousands of young women:
“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,” she said.
More companies are welcome to sign the Hire Me pledge at the official Girls Who Code website at www.girlswhocode.com/hireme. Jack Dorsey, co-founder and CEO of Square and Twitter, two of the tech firms signing the pledge, emphasized how crucial diversity is in the traditionally male-dominated tech industry:
“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.”
With 90% of Girls Who Code alumni saying they intend or have declared their interest in earning a Computer Science degree, the organization’s aim not to just help girls learn to code, but also build careers in tech is becoming a reality. According to the Wall Street Journal, the level of commitment by the companies that have already signed the pledge varies. Square, a mobile payment firm, will offer internships and then full-time job offers.
Girls Who Code offers a free after-school club for girls in the 6th through 12th grade and a 7-week intensive summer program for high school girls, which is also free and is hosted at companies and universities across the country.