Tag Archives: grow with google

Celebrating community leaders bridging the digital divide

Local leaders know their communities best, and this Black History Month we’re celebrating organizations across the country that help people gain new skills, find jobs and grow their businesses. Over the past year, through our Grow with Google initiative, we've worked with leaders and organizations in Black communities across the US who are helping to close the digital skills divide.

One of these standout organizations with deep community roots is the Olivet Institutional Baptist Church in Cleveland, Ohio. In the 1960s, the church worked tirelessly with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to expand voter registration, paving the way for Carl Stokes to become the first Black mayor of a major U.S. city. Today, under the leadership of Reverend Dr. Jawanza Colvin, community activism and social justice remain at the heart of Olivet Church and its associated Olivet Housing & Community Development Corporation (OHCDC).

Cleveland has the second highest poverty rate among big cities in the U.S., so pathways to jobs is one of Rev. Colvin’s top priorities. Some members of his community and congregation are struggling to get access to good jobs and oftentimes don’t have the training required to change careers. To connect residents with the resources they need to compete for emerging information technology jobs in Cleveland, Rev. Colvin and OHCDC teamed up with Grow with Google to offer the IT Support Professional Certificate Program—an online curriculum designed to prepare people for roles in IT support. By creating cohorts of learners who are going through the IT Certificate curriculum together,  Reverend Colvin and the OHCDC are helping members of the Cleveland community prepare for jobs in a growing industry.

OHCDC is among many organizations who are helping their communities learn new digital skills to grow their careers and businesses. In Indianapolis, Larry Williams, President of the Indy Black Chamber of Commerce, is leveraging our tools and resources to teach local small businesses how to grow online. His first workshop was so popular that he’s continued to offer workshops to more than 100 business owners who are growing and creating more local economic opportunity. And in Columbia, South Carolina, JT McLawhorn—who leads the Columbia Urban League—used the Applied Digital Skills curriculum at their annual STEM careers summit, helping 400 teens in foster care prepare for summer jobs. The Columbia Urban League is now expanding these offerings across the state.

This year we launched the Grow with Google Partner Program to make sure that more community heroes like Reverend Colvin, Larry Williams and JT McLawhorn have access to free digital skill resources that help their communities thrive. We invite local heroes and organizations to learn more and apply at grow.google/partners. We look forward to continuing to support and celebrate the important work you’re leading in your communities.

You can pick the winner of the Google.org Impact Challenge Illinois

Last month, eight high school students in Columbia, South Carolina started apprenticeships at local businesses through a program to support homegrown talent in the area. In Cleveland, 25 high schoolers are hard at work on their internships at a local manufacturer, on a track to have a permanent job by the spring. And in Pittsburgh, hundreds of women participated in pay-what-you-can workshops, ranging from DIY synthesizer making to custom vinyl cutting.

Since our start last year, the Google.org Impact Challenge has awarded $1 million to 16 nonprofits in four cities: Pittsburgh, Oklahoma City, Columbia, S.C., and Cleveland, all cities we visit on our Grow with Google tour across the U.S. Selected by a panel of local advisors, each organization came up with a new way to create economic opportunities for the communities they serve. At Google, when we see something that’s working, we find a way to make it even better.

For our next Google.org Impact Challenge in the U.S., we decided to cast a wider net and support organizations whose reach will extend beyond one metropolitan area. To support Grow with Google’s initiative to create economic opportunities for all Americans, we launched a new statewide Impact Challenge, giving Google.org the ability to support an even more diverse group of organizations. Last September, we convened our first statewide Impact Challenge in Illinois, and 167 nonprofits from all corners of the Prairie State applied with their boldest ideas to make positive change.

Today, we are pleased to announce the winners, each of whom will receive $75,000 in grant funding and Google training to make their ideas a reality. One of these winners will receive an extra $250,000, and it’s up to you to pick who wins. You can select your favorite on our site today; voting ends on February 14.

Grow With Google Illinois
  • After School Matters:Supporting a program to guide disconnected Chicago youth onto individualized college and career pathways.

  • Cara Chicago:Helping people affected by poverty and the challenges that come with it get quality jobs.

  • Future Founders Foundation: Empowering young adults to start their own businesses through a free accelerator.

  • Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois:Increasing on-site accessibility to STEM education for girls in over 40 rural Illinois counties.

  • Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs: Creating community-owned grocery stores in small towns to increase access to fresh produce and meats from local farmers.

  • Manufacturing Renaissance: Offering paid work experiences, training for industry credentials, career and college coaching to underserved youth for careers in manufacturing.

  • North Lawndale Employment Network: Providing transitional jobs for men and women returning from incarceration.

  • Mattoon in Motion:Supporting a sustainable, collaborative space for entrepreneurs to receive training, mentoring, and coaching.

  • True Star Foundation Inc.: Helping small businesses and nonprofits create social media content, blog posts, videos, and more through a youth-led digital marketing agency.

  • YWCA of McLean County:Building employment skills for formerly incarcerated women.

Thanks to our panel of local advisors for selecting such a great group of finalists. Now it’s time for you to weigh in. Vote through our website to select which of the 10 winners will receive the People’s Choice Award and and additional $250,000. Public voting will end in one week, on February 14, and the winner will be announced on February 15.

Supporting the military community for whatever’s next

In August 2018, Google made a commitment to veterans, military spouses, and service members transitioning to civilian careers. At that time, we announced a job search experience that uses military occupational specialty codes to connect service members and veterans with open jobs that call for skills developed during their time in service.

In the months since, we’ve continued our work to make it even more useful for those who are searching for civilian jobs and the amazing people who support and guide them. People like Kristen Rheinlander, who works as the Transition Site Manager of the USO Pathfinder Program at Fort Hood, Texas. A self-described Army brat whose father served in the military for 25 years, Kristen came to the USO as a volunteer 4 years ago. Today, she heads up a team that works with service members and their families as they prepare for a new challenge: figuring out what comes next.

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Every new challenge has a first step, and for Kristen, it starts with helping people see the connections between the skills they developed in the military and civilian jobs. By introducing her clients to the Google Search tool early in the process, she’s able to show them the types of occupations that align with their expertise, whether demand for a field is projected to grow, and active job listings in a given geographic area. It’s a confidence booster, she says—the search tool is a translator that “puts words to the unknown,” providing greater clarity for clients unsure of which roles, companies, and industries align with what they’re looking to do next. After finding a lead through the Google Search tool, Kristen works with her clients to begin crafting resumes that highlight their military experiences in language civilian employers use and understand.

Helping people find connections between skills developed in the military and civilian jobs is just one of the many ways we’re working to create useful tools and programs for transitioning service members, veterans, and military families—a community that’s sacrificed so much in service to our country. For the over 2.5 million veterans who’ve decided that their next step is owning their own business, we’ve created a “Veteran-Led” attribute for their Google My Business profiles. With this badge, veteran-led businesses stand out across Google Search and Maps. And for transitioning service members and military spouses who are interested in the growing field of IT support, we’ve made it easier for them to earn Google’s IT Support Professional Certificate through a $2.5 million grant to the USO.

Visit Grow with Google to learn more about job search and our other tools and programs for veterans.

Through these resources, we’re working to help service members, veterans, and their families prepare #ForWhateversNext.

Source: Search

Grow with Google is heading to libraries in all 50 states, starting today

For many people in cities and towns across America, the public library is the central place to access information, search for a job or even learn about running a small business. And librarians aren’t just checking out books to patrons—they’re providing key digital resources for their communities.

At the end of last year we announced our plans to bring Grow with Google to more local communities by teaming up with libraries in all 50 states across the country to help ensure that economic opportunity exists for everyone, everywhere.  

We’re kicking that work off today in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania—where Benjamin Franklin established America's first free public library—by hosting in-person workshops for job seekers, small businesses, librarians and nonprofit leaders. Later this week, we'll be continuing the Pennsylvania workshops in York and Erie, then heading to more states like Connecticut and Maryland. We’re looking forward to people across the country joining us at their local library to learn digital skills, from online marketing tips to how to use a spreadsheet.  We’ll have plenty of Googlers available for one-on-one training and to answer your questions. Follow our events page to see when we’ll be visiting your state.

To make sure that every library and nonprofit can access our free tools, content and programs, we’re launching the Grow with Google Partner Program. Partners can leverage the online resources and guides to meet the evolving needs of jobseekers, students and small businesses in their communities. We invite organizations to learn more and apply at grow.google/partners.

To further support local libraries, Google is providing a $1M sponsorship of the American Library Association to support digital skills trainings through microfunds to libraries across the country.  Pennsylvania libraries can now submit their ideas for training to the American Library Association. This funding will be made available as Grow with Google visits each state in the country.

It’s our mission to help people across the U.S. get the skills they need to grow their careers and businesses, and we're proud to get to work with nonprofit partners and libraries to make it possible. We hope to see you at the library.

How an IT support certificate transforms careers

A man who never finished college from Nebraska, a U.S. Army medical specialist from Kentucky and a mother of five from California. They’re three different people who have something pretty special in common: they were able to jump start their careers with the Google IT Support Professional Certificate. It’s a first-of-its-kind online program from Grow with Google, that gives you the skills to launch a career in IT support and connects you with potential employers. With an estimated 150,000 open roles, IT support is one of the fastest-growing fields in America. In its first year, thousands of learners from across the country have already completed the program—many of whom have transformed their lives and careers. Here are a few of their stories.

Daniel: Night security guard who found daylight with an IT Support role

Grand Island, Nebraska

When his fiance got her first teaching job, Daniel Anderson left college and moved to Grand Island, Nebraska to be with her. Without a college degree, he struggled to find a job. Eventually, Central Community College hired him as a night security officer, but it was far from the career in technology he had once envisioned. Knowing his passion for computers, a friend encouraged him to check out the Google IT Support Professional Certificate. While working nights, he enrolled and got his certificate in five months. Soon after that, Daniel got an email about an IT job at Central Community College. His Google credentials stood out against other candidates and he got the role as an IT Support Specialist. Now married, Daniel is working in a job he loves, and that lets him spend more time with his new wife.

Yvonne: Put five kids through college, then found a career of her own

Vallejo, CA


Yvonne, from Vallejo, CA, has never been one to shy away from a challenge. She’s been through 23 surgeries and a permanent tracheostomy, home-schooled two sons with learning disabilities, and put five children through college. But after her kids all graduated, she faced another challenge: what to do next.  She had always valued the importance of technology, so that seemed like a good place to start. On a recommendation from one of her sons, Yvonne enrolled in the IT Support Professional Certificate program, and quickly completed it. With the certificate in hand and a newfound confidence, she landed a product engineering job with a driverless car company. The company was especially impressed with her skills in debugging, networking, and monitoring operating systems through remote virtualization tests—all skills she learned with the certificate. Once again Yvonne has risen to the challenge, but we’re sure that’s not a surprise to anyone.

Andrew: U.S. Army vet with a new mission

Paducah, KY

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Andrew spent eight years in the Army as a medical specialist, but around the barracks he was better known as the unofficial IT guy. So when logistics and costs dimmed his plans for a post-military medical career, Andrew began to think about IT. While searching for options that could give him credentials, Google’s IT Support Professional Certificate caught his eye. The flexibility of being able to do the courses in his free time was very appealing, and he enrolled. The certificate built on his basic networking knowledge, but also challenged him with his first exposure to Linux. In six months he completed the certificate and soon had a job as a Level 1 Technician at an IT consultancy in Paducah. Andrew is thrilled to now be the official IT guy.

Since its launch in January of 2018, people from all different places and backgrounds have completed the IT certificate, including learners at more than 10 nonprofit community organizations and 25 community colleges. If you are interested in exploring an IT career too, learn more at The Google IT Support Professional Certificate page on Coursera.

This is how we coded: a recap of Europe & Africa Code Weeks

Computer Science (CS) education is critical to preparing students for the new global economy, but unfortunately many young people lack the opportunity to develop these technical skills. As part of our commitment to help one million Europeans find jobs or grow their businesses by 2020 and to train 10 million Africans by 2022, we want to change that. 

That's why this October, we supported Europe Code Weekfor the fifth consecutive year, and Africa Code Week for the third consecutive year, funding 76 education organizations in 33 countries. Over the course of the two weeks, we worked with 166,000 students (56% of whom were girls) and 4,600 teachers to help them develop the skills to get involved in computer science.

This year at Europe Code Week, a grassroots movement started by the European Commission, we funded 25 organizations in 21 countries which all together inspired 77,000 students in computer science.

In Africa, we joined forces with SAP and Africa Code Week to fund 53 organizations and grassroots groups across 11 countries. Over 107,000 students were able to explore computer science through a variety of fun and interactive workshops.

We’re glad to have helped these students gain coding experience in Europe and Africa and look forward to inspiring even more students in 2019.

Find a better balance with our tips for Digital Wellbeing

A good tool should make your life easier. That’s as true in the digital world as it is anywhere else. Today, people use digital tools to simplify and speed up tasks from finding a playground for their children to checking the weather forecast, giving them more space to focus on what matters most to them. Technology is transforming the way we spend time, and our Digital Wellbeing efforts can help you make the most of that time—so that technology fits comfortably into your life, without the unwanted distractions. On Pixel, Android, YouTube, Family Link and Gmail, we’ve already released new tools and features to help people better balance their lives. But our products are only part of the story.

To get the word out about healthy habits, we created a new series of Digital Wellbeing videos as part of Google’s Digital Workshop. Each video encourages you to think about how you use technology and suggests ways to find the right balance for you. Because Digital Wellbeing means something different for each of us, we’ve partnered with a team of psychologists, anthropologists and mindfulness experts. There are medical professionals, like Mario Alonso Puig, recognized worldwide for his studies on brain activity, and educators like Greta Rossi, co-founder of Recipes for Wellbeing. By drawing on each of their perspectives, the series takes an honest look at the way we live with tech, from how smartphone notifications affect productivity, to exploring how to set physical boundaries for  technology use, and the ways you can become more self-aware of your online habits.

This course is just the beginning of a wide range of educational materials we’re working on, covering topics from how kids use technology to how to manage mobile phone usage. In the coming months, we’ll make the new course available in more than 30 languages across 64 countries.The next time you need to find a better balance–whether you want to disconnect on your vacation or reduce the number of distractions in your day—check out the videos.

New partners and courses to develop tomorrow’s workforce

At Google, we’re committed to creating more opportunity for everyone. Through our Grow with Google initiative, we’ve trained 7.5 million people in Europe, the Middle East and Africa on digital skills since 2015. But we’re doing more than just training—we want to help people put these new skills to use, which is why we’ve also committed to helping 1 million Europeans find a job or grow their business by 2020.

To reach this commitment, we offer free online and offline courses through Google Digital Garage across 64 countries. Up until now, digital marketing has been the core of our training, but as the nature of work changes and the demand for a broader set of both technical and soft skills grows, we believe it’s critical to incorporate these skills into our programs.

New courses to help people succeed in the workplace

We're partnering with FutureLearn, The Open University, OpenClassrooms and Goodwill Community Foundation, leading providers of online education, to expand our current modules with new training on soft skills. These include social and emotional skills, such as communicating with others, motivating and influencing teams and colleagues, and making decisions under pressure; skills crucial for success in any career and increasingly valued by employers, according to the latest research from the World Economic Forum.

Here’s a closer look at the courses we're launching today:

  • Learn techniques for public speaking : Learn how to plan and deliver presentations that capture the attention of your listeners, whether it’s sharing a business plan or motivating your employees or colleagues.

  • Communicate your ideas through storytelling and design: Ideas become more powerful when they’re shared. This course will help you discover simple tools like mind maps, storyboards and storytelling to help you engage people with ideas.

  • Business communications: Learn how to craft clear, well-structured emails, presentations or reports.

  • Effective networking: Whether you’re running a business, looking for a job, or ready for that next career move, learning how to network is key. In this course, we will introduce you to the principles of networking, to help you develop your professional brand.

In the coming months, alongside our partners, we’ll make the new courses available on Google Digital Garage in more than 30 languages in 64 countries.

Get certified with Google Digital Garage

We know that when looking for a job, certifications are often essential in demonstrating acquired skills to potential employers. Today, The Open University, the largest academic institution in the UK, a leading European university, and a world leader in flexible distance learning, is adding their high-quality accreditation to our Google Digital Marketing Certificate. The certificate, already accredited by IAB Europe, provides jobseekers with a tangible way to demonstrate their skills, and is awarded to learners completing the free online training course available at Google Digital Garage.

By partnering with leading providers of online education, we are confident we will have a greater impact in helping learners and businesses gain new skills and training for the workplace. We look forward to expanding our collaboration with industry partners to help even more people grow their skills and see their careers or businesses thrive.

Grow with Google is coming to a library near you

Since welaunchedGrow with Google a little over a year ago, we’ve traveled to cities and towns, partnering with local organizations fromKansas toMichigan toSouth Carolina to bring job skills to job seekers and online savvy to small businesses.  No matter where we went, big cities or small towns, libraries were at the heart of these communities.

To support the amazing work of libraries throughout the country, Google and the American Library Association are launching the Libraries Ready to Code website, an online resource for libraries to teach coding and computational thinking to youth. Since we kicked off this collaboration last June, thirty libraries across the U.S. have piloted programs and contributed best practices for a “by libraries, for libraries” hub. Now, the 120,000 libraries across the country can choose the most relevant programs for their communities.

Libraries have long been America’s go-to gathering place for learning.  Now more than ever, people are using libraries as resources for professional growth.  And libraries are stepping up: 73% of public libraries are making free job and interview support available in their communities.

That’s why starting in January, we’ll also work hand-in-hand with libraries around the country, using technology to help ensure that economic opportunity exists for everyone, everywhere.  We’ll bring Grow with Google in-person workshops for job seekers and small businesses, library staff trainings, and ongoing support to libraries in all 50 states.

We’re also announcing a $1M sponsorship to the American Library Association, creating a pool of micro-funds that local libraries can access to bring digital skills training to their community.  An initial group of 250 libraries will receive funding to support coding activities during Computer Science Education Week. Keep an eye out for a call for applications from the ALA as Grow with Google comes to your state.

Google is proud to partner with libraries all over the country to ensure economic opportunities for more Americans.

Meet the Grow with Google Developer Scholarships graduates

Posted by Peter Lubbers, Senior Program Manager, Google Developer Training

In January, as a part of Grow with Google’s ongoing commitment to create economic opportunities for Americans, the Google Developer Scholarship Challenge—hosted in partnership with Udacity—awarded nearly 50,000 scholarships to aspiring developers from a wide range of backgrounds and experience levels.

In April, the 5,000 top performers in the Scholarship Challenge earned scholarships for a full Udacity Nanodegree program. These scholars come from every part of the United States, range in age from the late teens to the late sixties, and vary in experience from beginning to advanced. Despite these differences, they share a desire to strengthen their web and Android development skills, and to grow professionally.

Together, they’ve created nearly 18,000 web and Android apps, and exchanged over 2 million messages on the support channels. Students all across the country have reported new jobs, career advancement, and engagement in community programs as a result of their scholarships.

We’d share every story if we could, as they’re all remarkable. But today, we introduce you to five scholars in particular. Because of their hard work, and what they’ve made of the scholarship opportunity, their lives and careers have changed in dramatic ways. Let’s meet them now.

Tony Boswell

Kansas City, MO

From Missouri Long-Haul Trucker to Web Developer

Tony Boswell was a long-haul truck driver for 14 years. He covered over 1.5 million miles, drove through almost every state in the US, and hauled everything from fresh produce to crude oil. It was steady work, but it required being away from home 320 days out of every year. Tony told us “My wife was home alone and we were living two entirely separate lives.”

Last year, at age 48, Tony decided he had to make a change. Despite not having any transferable skills or relevant work history, he believed he could become a developer. He applied to the Grow with Google Developer program, and earned the Nanodegree scholarship. It was the right move. Tony completed his Nanodegree program in September, and recently found a full-time position focused on front-end web development. Thanks to the career lessons included in his program, he was able to confidently negotiate a $10,000+ increase in his starting salary offer.

“I am happy to say, thanks to the education, training, and coaching that I received from this program, I have finally completed my transition from the open road and a steering wheel, to accepting the title of Technical Support Specialist — Web Developer. I can truly say that my whole life has changed because of coding.”

Kimberly McCaffery

Virginia Beach, VA

From Virginia Homemaker to Technology Apprentice

Kimberly McCaffery applied for the Grow with Google scholarship to acquire new skills that would help her transition back to the workforce. She is a mother of four, and has been a military spouse and homemaker for over 20 years. She was motivated to apply because she recognized the need to contribute financially to her family:

“Since 1999, we’ve moved 10 times; in the US and overseas. When we got back to Virginia, I returned to the workforce as a substitute teacher. The W2 I received was my first one this century, but, my total pay was less than $500! As my husband approaches retirement, I knew it would help us all if I could shoulder more of the load.“

After completing her Front-End Nanodegree program earlier this fall, Kimberly got a job as a Technology Apprentice at MAXX Potential in Norfolk, Virginia. “I’m so pleased and proud! It's 10 minutes from the kid's school, very flexible, and full of challenges with IT as a service. And there is plenty of room within the company to grow as fast as I want!”

Charles Rowland

Glendive, MT

From unemployed to Software Engineer

After being laid off from a job in Pennsylvania, Charles and his family moved back to his wife’s hometown in rural Montana, where he struggled to find work as a freelancer. It was a very difficult time, and his confidence suffered.

“I fell into major depression. When my phone rang, I had panic attacks because it was people asking for money. Job-wise, there was nothing in our small town.”

Charles had applied for, and earned, a Grow with Google Scholarship, but there didn’t seem to be a single place where he could apply his skills. He was desperate, but one interview changed everything for him:

“In June I applied for a job at the local cable company to do cable installation. In August I finally got called in for an interview. Immediately the CEO asked me why I didn’t apply for their programming position. I never actually saw it. Instead of an interview for an installer job it turned into the first of 2 interviews for a programming job. For the 2nd interview, I loaded up my phone with all the apps I had made during the Android Basics program. In the interview I answered all the standard questions but it was when I pulled my phone out and showed off the applications I made in the Nanodegree program, that I could tell that I nailed it.“

Two days later, they called and offered Charles the job.

“I never imagined I’d end up doing a job like this. My first day was on September 24.”

Anna Scott

Tularosa, NM

Working with Students to Build an Apache Language App

Anna is a Special Education teacher and STEM program coordinator for a middle school in New Mexico. She has a passion for technology, and applied for the Google Developer Scholarship to gain new knowledge and be more helpful to her students and her community.

Anna lives and works near the Mescalero Apache Tribal lands and is now working with her students to develop an Apache language app.

“Students are collecting Apache words and phrases as raw data for the app, and have been working closely with our Apache Language teacher, who is a member of the tribe. Students are designing artwork for the app and are consulting their elders to make it meaningful for Apache people.”

Anna is also having a school-wide drawing contest for the launching icon. During the STEM meetings, students work with Android Studio—they learn how to change the look of their app with XML, and make it do things with Java. “My students are really motivated by this project!”

Lourdes Wellington

Castine, ME

Building A Website for African Widows and Orphans

Lourdes Wellington worked in the information technology field, but in the back of her mind, she harbored a desire to learn software development. She was gearing up to make that transition, when a serious health crisis put a hold on her plans—it was cancer, and survival meant having part of her right arm amputated. Despite the challenge, she was determined to move forward both physically and mentally:

“Losing my arm was a small price to pay considering I did not lose my life. My mental aptitude became stronger and I began to consider how I wanted to move forward in the future with my life.”

Lourdes successfully applied for the Grow with Google scholarship, and with the new skills she learned in her Front-End Nanodegree program, she went looking for a meaningful way to make an impact. She learned about an organization that benefits African widows and orphans, and decided to get involved. She created a website to help increase visibility for the organization, calling attention to their efforts to raise funds so a fish hatchery and fish ponds can be constructed to feed small villages.

“Taking programming classes with Udacity for website development has motivated me to create even more websites for charity.”

It has been an honor and a pleasure to play a small part in the remarkable journeys each of these scholarship students has undertaken since we first met them back in January. We look forward to seeing how each and every graduate puts their new skills to work to advance their lives, their careers, and the world around them!