Thomas Jefferson High School at Google Cloud

 

November 12, 2019 | Thomas Jefferson High School at Google Cloud | by Joy Dickson

On Nov. 12, Thomas Jefferson High School took 20 students to Google Cloud in Seattle.  As soon as we pulled up to the building we were greeted by Leslie Redd, Mandy Albanese and Tim Sale.  They were very welcoming and escorted us into the building and gave the students an overview of the day and badges to wear. Once we all had our badges, we proceeded to a building that was only a few weeks old!

We saw all sorts of different workspaces, such as conference rooms, office spaces, meditation spaces, quiet spaces, music rooms, Seattle-themed areas, a mothers room, micro kitchens, and the game room - where students were allowed to play games! Everyone was impressed by the unique spaces and how Google Cloud works to make sure their employees are happy and have everything they need.

Next, we went into the large conference room, where Amina Mansour, a Cloud Solutions Architect, shared videos about Computer Science and Machine Learning.  She also spoke about her background and the pathways that led her to the job at Google Cloud.  During the amazing lunch provided from Specialty's Café, the girls did a whole group activity about Machine Learning. They really enjoyed getting to do a hands-on activity and working closely with professionals from the company!

We then had the pleasure of meeting Kendrick Umstattd, a Software Engineer, and Megan Harris, an Interaction Designer, who joined a panel of women to share their experiences and backgrounds with the girls. The panelists also took the time to answer questions. Some of the questions the girls asked included: What college did you attend? What was your major? Did you always want to work in tech? How do you handle not knowing something you need to know? My favorite piece of advice from the panel was: You do not need to be an expert or have everything be perfect, you just need to care and be willing to learn. The panel emphasized to the girls why the tech field needs them and how many different pathways there are within the field. It was so important and inspiring for the girls to hear about all the possibilities for their futures!

At the end of the day each girl left with a string backpack, t-shirt, and stickers to remember their amazing field trip! A huge thank you to Leslie, Tim, Mandy, Amina, Kendrick, Megan, and everyone at Google Cloud for spending time with the Thomas Jefferson girls and providing this experience for them to see what is possible!

 

After attending this event:

100%

of girls/non-binary students are more interested in STEM!

95%

of girls/non-binary students want to continue attending IGNITE events

80%

of girls/non-binary students want to investigate taking a STEM related course next semester

55%

of girls/non-binary students want to ask a teacher about additional STEM activities

100%

of girls/non-binary students want to study harder to attend college and further their education

Here's what the students enjoyed most:

"I loved seeing the office space and seeing how accommodating it was to different people, like having a space for nursing mothers who want to pump. The whole space was beautiful and made me want to work there! I also never realized how computer science is in almost everything we do, so the panel opened my eyes to how versatile computer science is. This was a really cool experience, and I learned a lot and had a really good time."

- 12th grade

 

"Seeing the building itself is made to be eye-catching. The opportunities you can find in STEM if you look or just ask around about resources. This event inspired me to put more time into things that interest me. It was a really amazing experience."

- 10th grade

 

"Highlights I enjoyed from today were the actual Google campus itself the environment/space they create to truly accommodate their employees. I also enjoyed and was inspired by the different roles in STEM and at Google."

- 12th grade

"I loved the design aspect and how involved it is with tech and CS. It made me more curious about the direction I want to go for my career."

- 12th grade

 

"The highlight of design and tech. This event inspired me to take classes related to and talk to people who have careers in STEM."

- 10th grade

 

"It's not about how you started your path, but what led you to STEM. I loved the panel!"

- 12th grade

 

"I liked seeing an example of a workplace I could be in in the future, and hearing how my talents/interests/personality could benefit me in this environment, and the company itself."

- 12th grade

"I enjoyed learning about how Google provides a lot for their employees and seeing how people interact with their environment. It makes me feel better knowing that Google cares about the well-being of employees. This event was perfect!"

- 9th grade

 

"I enjoyed walking around the site and the aesthetic of it. I was inspired by the women who spoke at the panel."

- 11th grade

 

"The accommodations the company provides for its workers. This field trip inspired me to try out new things, even if it looks like I don't know what it is."

- 12th grade

 

"We got to see the working environment. It made me want to work hard/work in that type of environment."

- 12th grade

 

"Seeing the tour of the building and work environment. It made me see that you're not always at an office and there's a lot of opportunities."

- 10th grade

 

"Seeing the working environment and learning more about computer science. This event was great!"

- 9th grade

 

"The facility was nice! I enjoyed learning about machine learning. It was great!"

- 9th grade

 

"I liked the tour, videos, and panel. I got to hear details from actual employees."

- 12th grade

 

"I loved the tour of the building and how interesting and intentional the company's structure was."

- 12th grade

 

"I liked seeing the workspace and environment of Google Cloud. I liked this event a lot."

- 10th grade

 

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