Google is building on its various ongoing outreach programs with an investment of over $2 million in computer science and STEM education programs. The search giant plans for part of that investment to go directly toward increasing the "meaningful participation" of women in roles centered around computing. To that end, the company is fully funding the lease for an office space which will house the new headquarters for National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT). Set to be located in Boulder Colorado after moving from the Colorado University Boulder campus, NCWIT is a collective of more than a thousand different entities ranging from non-profits and universities to government organizations and companies. The goal of the organization is to help girls and women who want to take on roles in the larger computer sciences industry. Once the lease agreement is paid, Google will have donated approximately $1.3 million in funding to the group.
Following off of that, the company also plans to provide a $1.5 million grant which will fund the expansion of Colorado University Boulder's Physics Education Technology (PhET) Interactive Simulations project. The project is a digital education solutions provider in fields of science, technology, engineering, and math. The interactive lessons and simulations created by PhET have been used by students around the world, approximately 80 million times per year and across 90 languages. The expansion is intended to help optimize the most high-demand programs offered by the group for low-spec budget devices. PhET hopes that accomplishing that goal will help students in countries such as India, Brazil, or South Africa overcome limitations of hardware to pursue careers in technology.
This investment and other initiatives recently taken on by Google highlight the substantial investments the company has made toward educating people in the use of technology. As shown in the company's most recent diversity report, the Alphabet-owned tech conglomerate still has quite a way to go before it reaches its own goals. Having said that, the pitfalls and shortcomings certainly haven't stopped the company from trying. This latest investment is just the latest in a long string of investments Google has made in its attempt to push the tech industry to be better.