Microsoft hosts diversity youth leaders to promote tech-career readiness


More than 100 students from various schools in Seattle and Tacoma, Washington and Portland, Oregon convened at the Microsoft Redmond campus for the second annual STEM+CS Exploration Day with iUrban Teen, a program dedicated to igniting, elevating and engaging the next wave of ethnically diverse leaders.

iUrban Teen students are part of a White House-recognized program with a mission to spark an interest in technology for teens and young adults who may not have access to — or ever see in person — STEM professionals who look like them. Participants were selected for their interest in learning more about Microsoft and STEM career pathways.

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More than 100 students and their parents attended iUrban Teen Day at Microsoft on August 17, 2016 to explore innovations from Microsoft and visit labs and studios at the Microsoft Redmond campus. Photo by Digital Media

 

“I’m honored that Microsoft has invited us to participate again this year,” said Deena Pierott, Founder of iUrban Teen. “It shows a commitment on their part to walk their talk for the next generation of diverse leaders.”

Supported by Microsoft Global Diversity & Inclusion, the Office 365 and Skype teams, as well as other Microsoft volunteers, this event gave students a unique opportunity to discuss careers in the technology industry and explore STEM study. “Last year’s iUrban Teen Microsoft event was a blast, and students have been waiting to come back to Microsoft from day one,” added Pierott.

Ross Smith, director of customer engineering at Skype and former White House Champion of Change commented, “I am honored to represent and include Microsoft and our employees in helping to make the world a better place by bringing technology to the next generation.”

Tony Prophet, Microsoft’s corporate vice president of Education Marketing, delivered a keynote to students with his family’s story, emphasizing the importance of education and why STEM is critical for future career opportunities.

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Tony Prophet, Microsoft’s corporate vice president of Education Marketing, interacted with iUrban Teen students during his inspirational speech on STEM and Education, featuring a personal story of his family.  Photo by Digital Media

 

“Tony’s talk really inspired me, and I am going to apply myself more into the tech field,” said one iUrban Teen student right after Tony’s keynote.

 

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Both students and parents participating in the iUrbanTeen Day at Microsoft are impressed and inspired by Tony Prophet’s keynote on Microsoft Education’s vision and commitment to STEM.  Photo by Digital Media

 

The success of the iUrban Teen day at Microsoft is in large part due to the students’ families, who play important roles during the whole event.

Clayton Monteith partnered with his father Tracy Monteith, a senior Microsoft engineer and the President of Native Americans at Microsoft (NAmer), to share hands-on experience with drones and remote-controlled cars built on the Windows 10 platform. Clayton was proud to be the youngest coach of the day, and guided dozens of iUrban Teen students on how to operate drones as well as sharing the theory behind building a drone.

Clayton Monteith, son of Tracy Monteith, a senior Microsoft engineer and the President of Native Americans at Microsoft (NAmer), demonstrates a Windows-based drone to iUrban Teen student. Photo by Digital Media
Clayton Monteith, son of Tracy Monteith, a senior Microsoft engineer and the President of Native Americans at Microsoft (NAmer), demonstrates a Windows-based drone to iUrban Teen student. Photo by Digital Media

 

Rounding out the day’s activities, actor Jason George and producer Zoanne Clack from Grey’s Anatomy joined the session via Skype in the Classroom to share their views on how technology can help people achieve more in their careers.

“It is so awesome to see celebrities from Grey’s Anatomy,” said an iUrban Teen student after the Skype session.” Isn’t it amazing what technology can do?”

 

To learn more about iUrban Teen. Additionally, feel free to contact Deena (deena@iurbanteen.org) and Arturo Lucatero (arluca@microsoft.com) at iUrban Teen. For more information on how Microsoft enables modern classrooms on the Microsoft Education website.

To learn more about Microsoft Global Diversity & Inclusion.

 

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