By Tina Reed
Washington Business Journal, June 7, 2017 —
Howard’s new West coast Outpost is open for business.
In March, Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG) announced plans to create Howard West, a campus of sorts for the D.C.-based historically black college to address diversity in the tech industry.
Last week, the campus officially opened at Google’s Mountain View, California, headquarters with about 25 rising Howard juniors and seniors majoring in computer science. That first 12-week program will be taught by senior Google engineers and Howard faculty.
The central goal of Howard West, officials said, is to bolster the hiring of African-American software engineers, helping remedy the lack of racial diversity at the tech giant and other companies in Silicon Valley.
Google and other tech companies have struggled for years to promote diversity in their ranks, especially when it comes black representation, the Silicon Valley Business Journal reported. Just 1 percent of Google’s workforce is black, according to its most recent diversity report. Overall, only 2 percent of the tech industry is black.
Within five years, Howard officials said they expect 740 students will have completed the program.