October 28, 2020
By Ben Fried
Chief Information Officer and Google NY Site Lead
New York City is my home. I’m a proud graduate and parent of three children in the New York City public school system, and I chose to stay and build mycareer here. Twelve years ago, after a career on Wall Street, I joined Google and currently serve as Chief Information Officer (CIO) and co-site lead for Google’s growing New York campus. Like me, Google has been fortunate to call New York home and is committed to connecting students, teachers and job seekers to the local tech economy.
Today, as part of Google’s commitment to the continued growth of our city’s current and future tech workforce, Google.org is announcing $3.5 million in grants to three local organizations: Pursuit, ExpandEd Schools and CS4All.
Supporting organizations like these is especially important as the COVID-19 pandemic has unearthed unsettling truths about equity and access to resources, especially in underserved communities of color. As we navigate the short and long term effects of the pandemic, we must come together to create equitable solutions that meet the needs of the moment and provide a strong foundation for the future. This starts by making sure every New Yorker has access to a quality education and the training and resources needed for in-demand jobs—these grantees are working to make this possible.
Pursuit: Connecting New Yorkers to careers in tech
Pursuit creates economic opportunity for adults from low-income communities by training them to code and build careers in technology. Their fellows come from groups that are historically underrepresented in tech and are made up of majority Black or Latino people, women, immigrants and those without Bachelor’s degrees. Upon completing the fellowship, they go on to work at top tech companies, increasing their salaries from $18,000 to $85,000 on average. With $2 million in funding from Google.org, Pursuit will build on its work to remove systemic barriers preventing low-income communities from accessing careers in technology and connect 10,000 New Yorkers with jobs in the tech industry.
ExpandEd Schools: Supporting after-school educators
ExpandEd supports a strong after-school system that enables students to thrive and educators to grow. Google.org’s $1 million investment in ExpandED Pathways Fellowship Computer Science (CS) track will empower aspiring teachers of color from underserved communities to fulfill their professional goals through a 10-month after-school teaching practicum. Ultimately, this will help increase the number of diverse CS educators in New York City and nationwide.
CS4All: Sustaining Computer Science education in public schools
Computer Science for All (CS4All) began in 2015 as an innovative public-private partnership with the NYC Department of Education to train 5,000 teachers and bring equitable CS education to all 1.1 million public school students in NYC by 2025. As the program hits its halfway point, Google.org is providing $500,000 to fund their CS Leads program facilitated by the Fund for Public Schools. This will help provide more than 200 teachers with a comprehensive leadership training program focused on equity in CS education, peer coaching and in-school leadership.
The creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of New Yorkers is one of the reasons Google calls this city home. And I’m proud that the work we do helps nurture that spirit. Whether it’s standing alongside 26 CEOs from the largest employers in New York to launch the New York Jobs CEO Council with the goal of hiring 100,000 traditionally underserved New Yorkers by 2030, committing to additional hiring efforts focused on Black+ talent in NY or developing alternative pathways into the workforce, we believe tech should be for everyone and we’re committed to making that a reality.