WASHINGTON – Today, ITI, the global voice of the tech sector, joined the Congressional Bipartisan Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Caucus for the second annual HBCU Diversity in Tech Summit. The annual event, hosted by the HBCU Caucus, ITI, Howard University, and other business associations in Washington, D.C., is the largest collaboration of government, industry, and HBCU leaders.
The Diversity in Tech Summit brings together 47 companies, including more than a dozen ITI members, 34 HBCUs, and members of Congress for conversations about tech diversity and preparing students of color for careers within emerging technologies such as blockchain, artificial intelligence, and cybersecurity. Through two days of dynamic strategy sessions, participants discuss ways to build sustainable partnerships to strengthen course curriculum, close the skills gap, and create universal best practices for the recruitment and retention of HBCU graduates.
“A representative and diverse workforce is critical to the success of companies, strength of communities, and vibrancy of the U.S. tech sector” said Jason Oxman, President and CEO of ITI. “It is incumbent upon the tech industry, policymakers, and educators to work together and activate strategies to ensure we are leveraging the talent of individuals from all backgrounds and experiences throughout tech. HBCUs are an essential part of this effort. We thank Congresswoman Adams, Dr. Frederick, and the entire HBCU caucus and broader community for hosting this important dialogue. Our industry is committed to turning the ideas discussed today into real and meaningful action.”
“HBCUs contribute nearly $15 billion to our annual economy and have provided pathways of opportunity to millions of Americans, many of whom are first generation college students. Despite being historically underfunded and under-resourced, these institutions continue to produce top talent, including 40 percent of my colleagues in the Congressional Black Caucus,” said Congresswoman Adams, Founder and Co-Chair of the Bipartisan HBCU Caucus. “That is why the Diversity in Tech Summit is so important. There is no workplace diversity, especially within the tech industry, without HBCUs. I am proud to host the second annual Diversity in Tech Summit to build a well-prepared workforce that is diverse and inclusive.”
Several ITI member companies participated in the HBCU Diversity in Tech Summit, including Accenture, Adobe, Amazon, AMD, eBay, Facebook, Grant Thornton, HP, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Nielsen, Qualcomm, SAP, Twilio, Twitter, Verizon Media, and Visa.
“Accenture is passionate about accelerating inclusion and equality in the workplace and preparing the future workforce to drive innovation. We know that when people feel a sense of belonging and are valued by their employers for their individual contributions and perspectives, they are more likely to advance and feel empowered to innovate,” said Marty Rodgers, senior managing director and office managing director, Metro D.C., Accenture. “The Bipartisan HBCU Caucus’ Diversity in Tech Summit focuses on both of these important issues, and Accenture is delighted to participate.”
“Adobe is honored to be part of this Diversity in Tech event. More HBCU students in the technology industry will bring us more innovation, broader perspectives and better products,” said Katie Juran, Sr. Director Diversity & Inclusion, Adobe. “We are grateful that the Bipartisan HBCU Caucus is hosting this critical discussion and we are excited to see where it leads.”
“Amazon was proud to take the HBCU Partnership Challenge last year, and we are looking forward to participating in this year’s Summit at the Future of Technology session," said LaDavia Drane, Head of Diversity & Inclusion, Amazon. "We are continually looking for ways to further diversify our workforce and strengthen our culture of inclusion and are excited to share some of our work.”
“At AMD, we are passionate about enabling the next generation of innovators, researchers and business leaders to push the boundaries of what is possible and solve the world’s toughest challenges with high-performance computing technology,” said Ron Myers, AMD Corporate Vice President of Corporate Marketing. “We are honored to participate in this year’s Diversity in Tech Summit alongside HBCUs and the Congressional Bipartisan HBCU Caucus and are excited to see what the students at Howard University Middle School will accomplish with the latest AMD technology.”
“eBay deeply values diversity in our workforce, our workplace, and our marketplace. We are excited to participate in this discussion about how we can all work together to continue to improve diversity in our industry,” said Mike Dabbs, Senior Director, Government Relations, eBay Inc. “We deeply appreciate the work of the HBCU Caucus to foster these critical conversations, and we look forward to continuing our partnership with HBCUs in creating a more diverse and inclusive workforce across our industry.”
“Facebook is honored to participate in the second HBCU Diversity in Tech Summit as we advance important conversations around creating a more diverse tech workforce,” said Robert Traynham, External Affairs Director at Facebook. “We know how valuable it is to create an inclusive environment in which young people can thrive and succeed, and look forward to working with all the participants to help HBCU graduates pursue careers in tech.”
“Technology relies on the best ideas from the brightest minds. Tech workforce and leadership diversity are essential to ensuring we have that breadth and depth of ideas,” said Steve Perkins, Grant Thornton national managing director, Technology, Media and Telecommunications. “Grant Thornton has been a long-term partner with the HBCU community and applauds ITI’s continued collaboration with the HBCU Caucus.”
“Promoting diversity and inclusion in our workforce has long been ingrained in IBM's values, and we are proud of our partnerships with Historically Black Colleges and Universities," says Tia Silas, IBM Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer. "This fall, for example, through the IBM Skills Academy, students returning to Prairie View A&M and other universities will benefit from new curriculum that better aligns with the 21st century skills that employers such as IBM need. We know that public-private partnerships like these are critical to promoting diversity and inclusion, which, in turn, fuel innovation. That's why IBM is accepting the HBCU Partnership Pledge today, and why we look forward to continued partnerships with HBCUs."
“A diverse workforce and inclusive culture are key to Intel’s evolution. HBCUs produce nearly 30 percent of African-American undergraduate students with STEM degrees, which makes engaging with them critical to the STEM workforce of the future,” said Heather Mattisson, Intel’s Global Diversity and Inclusion Partnership Manager. “Partnerships with HBCUs for scholarships, curriculum, and infrastructure is an essential investment in the STEM pipeline. That’s why we’ve made commitments such as our HBCU grant program, a three-year, $4.5 million program to encourage students to remain in STEM pathways at six historically black colleges and universities. If we want to shape the future of technology, we must be representative of that future.”
“Diversity drives innovation, and HBCUs are producing talent that Microsoft and the other technology companies need as part of our overall talent strategy,” said Mari Roberts, Global Talent Acquisition at Microsoft. “We are proud of our longstanding HBCU partnership and encouraged to once again participate in this important discussion.”
"At Nielsen, we believe a robust diversity and inclusion strategy is essential to our continued ability to drive growth for our clients," said Courtney Jones, Nielsen's Vice President of University Relations. "Our ability to attract diverse talent is at the core of these efforts. Participating in the HBCU Diversity in Tech Summit has allowed us to expand our relationships with these institutions and their talented students—our future leaders, who will help us navigate an increasingly diverse marketplace."
“SAP is a proud member of the Diversity in Tech Summit for the second consecutive year and we value the HBCU Caucus Partnership Challenge signed in July 2018,” said Margot Goodson, SAP North America Diversity & Inclusion Lead. “We are currently working with several HBCUs with our Project Propel relaunch visiting 12 campuses earlier this year and hiring students into our iXp signature internship program plus our Summer Research Fellowship at Stanford. Congratulations Congresswoman Alma Adams on this stellar initiative to make HBCUs a priority in Corporate America!”
"Equality, diversity and inclusion go hand in hand with Twilio's mission to fuel the future of communications. Partnering with organizations such as the HBCU Caucus is critical for developing the innovative approaches needed to ensure that individuals and communities from all walks of life have access to the communication tools they need and deserve to thrive and be successful. We wholeheartedly support the goals of events such as the Diversity in Tech Summit. We thank Rep. Adams and members of the Caucus for the opportunity to participate and look forward to working with them in the future on these very important issues," said Sanford Reback, vice president, Twilio Global Public Policy and Government Affairs.
“As part of the Diversity in Tech Summit, Twitter is honored to join forces with the Congressional Bipartisan Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Caucus," said Carlos Monje Jr., Twitter Director of Public Policy and Philanthropy, U.S. & Canada. “We are unwavering in our commitment to keeping inclusion and diversity front and center in the way we approach our work. We appreciate this opportunity to collaborate with government, HBCU leaders and stakeholders.”
“Companies across the globe are implementing many initiatives to cultivate an inclusive diverse tech workforce and at Verizon Media we take pride in celebrating diversity, inclusion and generating exceptional talent,” said Julie Jacobs, General Counsel, Verizon Media. “We feel very fortunate to be able to contribute in these important, engaging conversations and shaping the future for generations to come. We applaud the HBCU Caucus' efforts in bringing together industry leaders, and look forward to another year of meaningful ideas to truly curate impactful inclusive programs for the tech industry.”
“Guided by our brand promise of universal acceptance for everyone, everywhere, Visa is committed to diversity and inclusion in our business. The Visa family comprises people of many countries, faiths, ethnicities and experiences, and our diversity is a true asset to our brand,” said Alfred F. Kelly, Jr., Chairman and CEO of Visa Inc. “Our partnerships with HBCUs have yielded tremendous talent for our company and we commend the HBCU Caucus for bringing the Diversity in Tech Summit together for an important discussion on diversity and innovation.”
Participating Schools & HBCU Advocacy Groups: Howard University, Florida A&M University, Fayetteville State University, Morehouse College , Bowie State University, Thurgood Marshall College Fund, Spelman College, North Carolina A&T State University, Bennett College, Central State University, Morgan State University, Barber-Scotia College, Shaw University, Fort Valley State University, FAMU-FSU College of Engineering, West Virginia State University, Tennessee State University, University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Alcorn State University, Livingstone College, Norfolk State University, Kentucky State University, Benedict College, Prairie View A&M University, Xavier University of Louisiana, Tuskegee University, Tougaloo College Research and Development Foundation, Saint Augustine's University, Hampton University, Texas Southern University, Lane College, Claflin University, Virginia State University, Jackson State University
Participating Companies: Accenture, Adobe, Airbnb, Allscripts, Allstate Insurance Company, Amazon, AMD, AnitaB.org, Covington & Burling LLP, CTA, Depository Trust & Clearing Corp, DTCC, eBay., Facebook, Federal Street Strategies, FICO, General Motors Financial, GlaxoSmithKline, Grant Thornton, HP Inc., IBM , Intel , ITI, Lyft, McDonald, McGuireWoods Consulting, Microsoft, NCC, Nielsen, Overland-Tandberg, Pandora + SiriusXM, PayPal , Qualcomm, Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans, SAP America , SAS Institute, SIFMA, Spotify, Stewart Strategies & Solutions, TSYS, Twilio, Twitter, Uber Technologies , Unum Group, Verizon Media, Visa, Zillow Group, Wells Fargo
Members of the Congressional Bipartisan HBCU Caucus: Rep. Alma Adams (D-NC) Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-AL), Sen. Doug Jones (D-AL), Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC), Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC), Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE), Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE), Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA), Sen. David Perdue (R-GA), Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA), Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL), Rep. French Hill (R-AR), Rep. Marc Veasey (D-TX), Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC), Rep. Colin Allred (D-TX), Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA), Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-OH), Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA), Rep. Sanford Bishop (D-GA) Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE), Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL), Rep. Anthony Brown (D-MD), Rep. Ted Budd (R-NC), Rep. Cheri Bustos, (D-IL), Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-NC), Rep. André Carson (D-IN), Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY), Rep. William Lacy Clay (D-MO), Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-SC), Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA), Rep. Jim Cooper (D-TN), Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), Rep. Danny Davis (D-IL), Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI), Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Rep. Dwight Evans (D-PA), Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-TN), Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-OH), Rep. Sylvia Garcia (D-TX), Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-FL), Rep. Jim Himes (D-CT), Rep. Eleanor Holmes-Norton (D-DC), Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD), Rep. Richard Hudson (R-NC), Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX), Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA), Rep. Trent Kelly (R-MS), Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA), Rep. Peter King (R-NY), Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-MI), Rep. Al Lawson (D-FL), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Rep. John Lewis (D-GA), Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA), Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-CA), Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO), Rep. Elaine Luria (D-VA), Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Rep. Lucy McBath (D-GA), Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN), Rep. Donald McEachin (D-VA), Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA), Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Seth Moulton (D-MA), Rep. Donald Norcross (D-NJ), Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN), Rep. Stacey Plaskett (D-VI), Rep. David Price (D-NC), Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-LA), Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon (D-PA) Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA), Rep. David Scott (D-GA), Eric Swalwell (D-CA), Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS), Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), Rep. David Trone (D-MD), Rep. Michael Turner (R-OH), Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-AR), Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL)