PRESS & NEWS

Oakland Digital in the Media
  • BRIDGEGOOD awarded ‘Project Innovation’ 2018 Grant by NBC

    NBC BAY AREA, TELEMUNDO 48, AND NBCUNIVERSAL FOUNDATION AWARDS BRIDGEGOOD “PROJECT INNOVATION” 2018 GRANT

    BRIDGEGOOD Creatives work session at Salesforce with UX Research Team

    SAN JOSE, CA – (April 10, 2018) – NBC Bay Area / KNTV, Telemundo 48 Area de la Bahia / KSTS and the NBCUniversal Foundation today announced that eight local non-profit organizations will receive a total of $225,000 in grants as part of the first annual Project Innovation grant challenge. The winning organizations (featuring Oakland Digital) were selected by the stations for their outstanding programs that leverage technology to solve everyday problems in the areas of civic engagement, skills for the digital economy and STEM / STEAM youth programming.

    “We’re thrilled to be able to spread the grants across eight deserving local organizations that are tackling some of the Bay Area’s toughest challenges with innovative solutions to move our communities forward,” said Stacy Owen, President and General Manager of NBC Bay Area and Telemundo 48.

    Project Innovation is presented by the NBCUniversal Foundation and NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations, a division of NBCUniversal. NBC and Telemundo owned stations located in 11 markets, including the San Francisco Bay Area, launched the new grant challenge in January 2018 to identify local organizations that embrace technology and innovation to develop real-life solutions for their communities. The stations located in each of the participating regions created community panels to review the grant applications and select final grant recipients. This year, more than $2.4 million will be awarded to not-for-profit organizations all across the country that are doing their part to transform their communities by providing solutions to real-life problems through tech-based approaches.

    Local Project Innovation 2018 grant recipients include:  

    Oakland Digital Arts and Literacy Center, Inc. – $25,000

    This organizations innovative program, BRIDGEGOOD.com, connects lower-income, minority students with real-world project opportunities in the fields of tech and business, while providing the support and guidance needed to succeed.

    “BRIDGEGOOD is helping design students across the Bay Area access job and career opportunities in tech, business, and beyond. With leadership, creativity, and fortitude, we will continue advancing digital inclusion for economic mobility.”

    “This grant is more than an award supporting our innovative hiring platform, it is a celebration of our mission and vision. Our board of directors and early supporters, including Google.org, Walter & Elise Haas Fund, and Golden State Warriors Community Foundation, are ecstatic to share this exciting opportunity of growth,” said Shaun Tai, Executive Director of Oakland Digital.

    Laney College partners with Oakland Digital – Inspire Oakland project & BRIDGEGOOD web application

     

    About Oakland Digital Arts and Literacy Center Inc (Oakland Digital)

    Oakland Digital is an award-winning 501(c)(3) design studio for good. We give overlooked student Creatives of color (ages 18-34) the resources to discover and explore meaningful careers (e.g., UX, UI, Visual Design) while improving diverse local economies (e.g., helping Nonprofits with design & marketing). Since 2009, Oakland Digital has impacted the lives of 4,800 Bay Area Community College Students and Entrepreneurs. Our programs (Inspire Oakland, Digital Equity, and BRIDGEGOOD.com) have boosted the economy by $4.2 million, leading to opportunities for 21st century employment, project-based learning, and economic independence. Oakland Digital is currently accepting pledges to create the ‘Community Place,’ a 10,000 sq. ft. vibrant facility for nonprofits to host free community events and connect with creative & tech talent.

    About NBC Bay Area / KNTV

    Owned by NBCUniversal, NBC Bay Area / KNTV is the Bay Area’s investigative station located in the heart of Silicon Valley. The station is committed to providing continuous, in-depth journalism with unique personalities. Along with broadcasting NBC’s award-winning daytime, prime-time and late night programming, NBC Bay Area produces more than 32 hours of news programming each week. The station can be seen locally on Comcast 3 and 703 and over-the- air on 11. COZI TV, the station’s digital network, offers a full schedule of America’s most beloved and iconic television series, hit movies and original programming. COZI TV can be seen locally on Comcast 186 and over-the-air on 11.3.

    About Telemundo Telemundo 48 / KSTS

    Telemundo 48 / KSTS is Telemundo’s local television station serving the Spanish-speaking community throughout the Bay Area. Owned by NBCUniversal, the station is committed to providing viewers with breaking news and in-depth journalism with their award-winning team of reporters, offering the most up-to-date local news, weather, sports and entertainment headlines through a variety of platforms, including online at TelemundoAreadelaBahia.com and via mobile and social media channels.

    About NBCUniversal Foundation

    NBCUniversal Foundation works to advance initiatives at the cross-section of societal needs and NBCUniversal’s priorities. The Foundation supports programs and organizations that strive to move communities forward – with a focus on innovation and technology. NBCUniversal is one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. NBCUniversal owns and operates a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment television networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group, world- renowned theme parks, and a suite of leading Internet-based businesses. NBCUniversal is owned by Comcast Corporation.

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    LEARN MORE

    www.oaklanddigital.org

    www.bridgegood.com

  • Oakland Digital launches BRIDGEGOOD to expand UX design careers in the Bay Area

    Oakland Digital (oaklanddigital.org), a nonprofit organization that provides student designers with professional opportunities, has launched BRIDGEGOOD (bridgegood.com).

    Supported by Google.org, Golden State Warriors Community Foundation, and Walter & Elise Haas Fund, BRIDGEGOOD is a web application that offers free online portfolios, paid projects from real-world clients, and access to exclusive tech & business meetups.

    The goal of BRIDGEGOOD: meaningful, entry-level jobs in graphic design, multimedia, and UX/UI for under resourced, overlooked talent.

    “BRIDGEGOOD scales our local work to a larger audience – helping students that are beginning careers,” says Operations Manager and Designer, Yudy Herrera.

    This summer, Oakland Digital partnered with product designers from Facebook to create a comprehensive eleven-week UX apprenticeship. The experience includes participation and leadership from Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google.

    Throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, 7,500 community college students lack access and exposure to careers in technology, according to a study Oakland Digital conducted on behalf of BRIDGEGOOD. By 2020, BRIDGEGOOD aims to serve 25,000 early stage Creatives (e.g., graphic designers) in the nation, specifically focusing on students of color, as well as 2nd/3rd career artists.

    “We believe creativity can change the world. With a growing ecosystem of over 4,000 artistic minds, BRIDGEGOOD is providing economic opportunity for our next generation of creators,” says Project Lead, Shaun Tai.

    For questions or to request a site visit from BRIDGEGOOD, email yudy@odalc.org or call 510-435-2945.

     

  • The Power of Design Thinking: $6MM Capital Campaign

    “The Power of Design Thinking: Do you have $6 Million?”
    written by UX Researcher & Designer, Laura Irene Pacheco

    Oakland Community Place

    Challenge: Keep nonprofits in Oakland

    Who: 501(c)(3) nonprofits in the Bay Area

    What: A design thinking event

    Where: Oakland, California

    Why: Rising real estate costs are displacing Bay Area nonprofits.

    How: Offer free event space

    Through BRIDGEGOOD.com, Oakland Digital wants to offer free space for nonprofits to use in Oakland, California.

    BRIDGEGOOD is a product out of Oakland Digital and supported by Google.org, Golden State Warriors Community Foundation, and Walter & Elise Haas Fund. The platform brings together creatives and non-profits. It’s founder, Shaun Tai’s vision to take the platform offline and into a brick and mortar space in the heart Oakland. -Oaklanddigital.org

    San Francisco bay area is dealing with rising real estate cost and Oakland California is no exception. The average rent has more than double (113%) in the last four years and nonprofits are struggling to stay local. In a survey conducted by The Greenlining Institute, 23 percent of Oakland’s nonprofits fear they may lose their current space within five years due to rising rents.

    “The issue is not so much about the volume of nonprofits being displaced — the way it might be characterized in San Francisco; rather, it’s that the organizations Oakland is poised to lose provide some of the most critical services to the community here.” — City of Oakland Special Projects Analyst Marisa Raya

    Oakland has a lack of affordable and accessible space for nonprofits, their current booking process is long and inefficient. A few months ago Oakland digital had a meeting with a nonprofit and because lack of available space the meeting was conducted on a dumpster. Oakland nonprofits need a frictionless, dynamic and simple way to reserve space to better serve their community.

    How we used design thinking to help Oaklands nonprofits.

    Last week my team and I had the privilege to help lead a design thinking event along with Geetha Pai and Brett Webb, the event was for community allies and leaders in the Google Community Space. Over 40 nonprofits came to the event and helped dream up possibilities for the Oakland Community Place.

    The event started by having everyone write challenges that they currently face at their nonprofit. The challenges were then sorted into categories: Training and education, networking events, Tech and tools, operations support…

    A “dot voting” method was used to focus on the most important and critical problem. The room was then divided into groups to tackle each challenge with a “blue sky” idea.

    My team and I walked around helping the groups start and keep the conversations and ideas flowing.

    Each of the groups presented their findings and ideas.

    The challenges & solutions:

    Training and Education

    Their main problems were that they needed hard skills training ( specifically outlook 360), leadership training and board development

    Their “blue sky” solution was to cross-generation train between HS students, college students, professionals, and seasoned pros. The first would volunteer and help the other and then vice versa.

    Community and Networking Events

    They need more community involvement, cultural inclusion and a community within the nonprofits.

    Their solution is ‘Ted talk’ style events, where nonprofits can meet and learn from each other. Also to have a database for nonprofits where they can share what they need help with, and see how they can help other nonprofits.

    Operations

    Their main problems are finding volunteers; non paid or paid, people don’t sign up to help.

    Their solution is to have stronger branding so that people will be motivated to come on board. Be more clear about the job and give a clear sense of purpose. Give people a more meaningful task that has a transparent way to show how it’s helping the community.

    Tech/Tools

    Explaining how to use tech tools to older staff members effects the efficiency of the office.

    Their solution is to stream a webinar training and offer a monthly workshop. Offer a “consultant line” where people can donate their time to offer tech support.

    Space:

    There is a lack of space for nonprofits to use.

    Their solution is to offer practical space. It needs to be in a safe area, climate control, have the right equipment but not be overly furnished. And of course affordable for nonprofits.


    In a three month period my team and I interviewed and conducted user testing with 18 nonprofits and we were able to map out their user journey and come up with a minimum viable product (MVP) for nonprofits to reserve the space.

    To view the case study:
    https://www.misslaurairene.com/#/bridgegood/

    Our next step is to acquire the space, and to use the finding of the design thinking event to design the space that the Oakland & East Bay Area community needs.

    Oakland Digital is currently seeking funding and could use your help.

    How you can help:

    • Introduce us to funders who might be interested in the BRIDGEGOOD #CommunityPlace
    • Become a community champion & advocate
    • Learn more about the space and our vision
    • Schedule a meeting with Executive Director Shaun Tai, 510-435-2945

    At the design thinking event
    UX Design Team (Laura Irene Pacheco, Charlene Nuval, Eric Ramirez)
  • $3M Capital Campaign: An Oakland Community Place

    Written by Designer & Journalist, Melody Stone

    A problem with many facets: As real estate prices continue to rise many local non-profits are struggling to find affordable operating spaces. Additionally, budding local design talent lacks the community to gain experience and build their portfolios close to home. Bay Area tech companies need a diverse pipeline of talent.  

    A recent study found 82 percent of middle-skill jobs require basic digital proficiency. Last year, we had 500,000 open computing jobs nationwide, yet produced less than 43,000 computer science graduates. The digital divide creates extreme economic disadvantages, as non-digital jobs pay substantially less.

    Our solution: one place to bring together all these parties to create a thriving and healthy nonprofit community and a diverse and competitive pipeline for local community-minded design talent (e.g., UX / UI / Graphic Artists).

    BRIDGEGOOD is a product out of Oakland Digital and supported by Google.org, Golden State Warriors Community Foundation, and Walter & Elise Haas Fund. The platform brings together creatives and non-profits. It’s founder, Shaun Tai’s vision to take the platform offline and into a brick and mortar space in the heart Oakland.

    Modeling the concept after Google’s Community Space in San Francisco (188 The Embarcadero), the location would serve as free operating space for 501(c)(3)’s and free coworking for budding Oakland & East Bay talent (in exchange for completing three design projects a month for non-profit members).

    Entry level designers and creatives would get experience working on real-world community projects. This would build out the talent pool available to tech companies in the Bay Area, with the aim of increasing diversity and inclusion within tech.

    This bold and ambitious project has the potential to solve problems within the tech industry and the Oakland & East Bay non-profit community.

    “It’s about economic mobility, building a pipeline of talent for tech, business and the creative world and it’s about tech equity. It’s about leveling the playing field for those who are entering the world of design,” says Tai.

     

    WHY OAKLAND?

    The city of Oakland is 55 percent African American, but only 13.5 percent of tech jobs are held by African Americans. Oakland Digital focuses on developing creative talent in community colleges to create a diverse talent pipeline. Creating a physical space where those connections can be made and talent can be foster will help bridge the diversity gap even more.

    “Oakland Community Place will compliment what exists in the Oakland ecosystem while filling gaps: free access to job training, leadership development, and professional opportunities,” explained Tai.

    The Numbers

    5%

    Vacancy rate for office spaces in Oakland.

     

    80%

    Increase for downtown office space rents from 2014 to 2016.

     

    55%

    Of Oakland residents are African American.

     

    13.5%

    Of tech jobs are held by African Americans.

     

    Together, let’s design the future of work. Oakland Digital is in the process of creating the ‘Oakland Community Place’ – a vibrant 10,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art facility for Nonprofit Employees & Student Creatives. We would like to hear from you – be a co-creator and share your ideas! To attend, register at http://oaklandplace.eventbrite.com. Video with Mayor Libby Schaaf | http://bit.ly/oaklandcommunity. Make a donation | www.oaklanddigital.org/donate.

  • Year of the Women x Oakland Digital

    Photos & Videos from Oakland Digital’s Celebration Gala
    Year of the Women

    SOCIAL IMPACT WINNER

    Kapor Center honors Oakland Digital

    Oakland Digital is a design studio for good providing digital literacy, opportunity, and inclusion to students seeking careers. WATCH VIDEO
    TECHNOLOGY HONOREE

    Caroline Barlerin, Twitter

     

    Passionate about what can be created at the intersection of social good and technology, Caroline leads Twitter’s community outreach and philanthropic efforts. WATCH VIDEO
    BUSINESS HONOREE

    Regina Rodgers, BlackRock

     

    At BlackRock, we are committed to building access to better futures for underserved individuals and communities. WATCH VIDEO
    COMMUNITY HONOREE

    Catherine Aker, Oakland Athletics

     

    The A’s Community Fund, which takes a dynamic approach to education and economic opportunity, invested more than $500,000 throughout the East Bay. WATCH VIDEO
    OAKLAND DIGITAL SUCCESS

    Summer 2017 Design Graduates

     

    Oakland Digital is a design studio for good providing digital literacy, opportunity, and inclusion to students seeking careers. WATCH VIDEO

    www.oaklandcommunityplace.com

  • Inspiration Awards 2017 | Dec 3 | “Year of the Women” | Honoring Twitter, Oakland A’s & BlackRock

    INSPIRATION AWARDS 2017 Benefiting Oakland Digital

    Inspiration Awards is a heartfelt gala and fundraising celebration honoring three champions bringing about positive change through their passion, dedication, and innovation. It’s your chance to meet Bay Area thought leaders in the fields of technology, business, and philanthropy.

    By attending Inspiration Awards, you are supporting digital literacy education to hundreds of businesses and nonprofits, mentorship to thousands of multimedia students, and spreading inspiration throughout our community.

    For nine years Oakland Digital, a 501(c)(3) design studio for good, has directly impacted the lives of 4,800 East Bay entrepreneurs. Our core programs, Inspire Oakland and Digital Equity, have boosted the local economy by $4.2 million, leading to opportunities for 21st-century employment and economic independence.

    Over the past year, we’ve successfully integrated BRIDGEGOOD.com, our exciting web application that has bridged the design & marketing needs of 625 business owners with 3,000 talented creatives. Oakland Digital has created a unique space of education, information exchange, and community-building that is increasing our impact and expanding our reach.

    Join the ecosystem of incredible Bay Area leaders that support our thoughtful, life-changing work: sponsor a table, purchase an advertisement, or make an in-kind donation.

    COMMUNITY HONOREE 
    Catherine Aker, Oakland Athletics

    Catherine Aker joined the Athletics organization in January 2016 and was promoted to her current role of vice president, communications and community engagement in March 2017. Aker oversees the A’s baseball and corporate communications efforts, including the strategic communications for the A’s new ballpark, in addition to the club’s community engagement and Oakland A’s Community Fund. The A’s Community Fund, which takes an innovative and dynamic approach to education, youth sports, and economic opportunity, invested more than $500,000 throughout Oakland and the East Bay in 2017.

     

    BUSINESS HONOREE
    Regina Rodgers, BlackRock

    Philanthropy built on what matters. At BlackRock, we are committed to building access to better futures for underserved individuals and communities. We partner with best in class organizations that use forward-thinking approaches to solve pressing social and environmental challenges. Our areas of focus 1) Building innovation: partnering with dynamic social enterprises putting innovation to work to accelerate social impact across a range of outcomes; from financial inclusion to food security. 2) Building inroads: creating access to improved livelihoods for underserved populations, including immigrants, women, and veterans, either through building skills or breaking barriers. 3) Building infrastructure: creating pathways to innovative water and energy solutions at the household level. 4) Building insight: joining with thought leaders to contribute additional rigor and analysis, expanding the realm of what’s possible in the social impact space.

     

    TECHNOLOGY HONOREE
    Caroline Barlerin, Twitter

    Passionate about what can be created at the intersection of social good and technology, Caroline Barlerin leads Twitter’s community outreach and philanthropic efforts. She brings a unique perspective to her role, having led partnerships for a software startup, designed a bicycle-powered rice thresher for small-acre farmers in Burma, led Level Playing Field Institute, and created the blueprint for Taproot Foundation. Most recently she launched the Twitter NeighborNest, a neighborhood learning center supporting low-income families by providing access to technology, classes, and resources to learn, connect and grow with the guidance of Twitter volunteers. She’s @CBarlerin on Twitter.

     

    IA:2017 Host

    Chrystine Villarreal, MIXhalo

    Chrystine Villarreal is a long time advocate of social change, especially through youth empowerment. Prior to her role as the President of MIXhalo, a startup that is creating the new standard for live sound, Chrystine curated the content for TechCrunch’s Global Disrupt and Annual Crunchies Award Show. Chrystine was successful in utilizing this role to highlight underrepresented founders and leaders in the community on a global stage. Before TechCrunch, Chrystine developed a world class revenue department for BUILD, a national organization that uses entrepreneurship to engage youth from under resourced communities. She also worked at Khosla Ventures and spent many years working in local, statewide and national politics.

     

    Distinguished Speakers

    Mayor Libby Schaaf, City of Oakland

    As a lifelong volunteer, Mayor Schaaf has two decades of public service experience that began while she was a young attorney and co-founded the non-profit Oakland Cares, which organized and implemented hundreds of volunteer community improvement projects across the city. She later left her legal career at Oakland’s largest law firm to build and run the first centralized volunteer program for Oakland public schools at the Marcus Foster Institute.

    Mayor Schaaf is honored to serve the people of Oakland and to help promote her hometown as the greatest place to live, work, play and do business. She is committed to revitalization that preserves and celebrates Oakland’s diversity and leads to direct prosperity for long-time residents and newcomers.

    Her four areas of focus as mayor are: holistic community safety, responsive trustworthy government, sustainable vibrant infrastructure and equitable jobs and housing. She is dedicated to ensuring the safety, education and fair treatment of all Oakland residents.

     

     

    Shaun Tai, Oakland Digital

    Shaun Tai is the Executive Director of Oakland Digital, an award-winning design studio. He dedicates himself to enhancing tech literacy and opportunity among Entrepreneurs and multimedia Students.

    Shaun also leads the direction and product strategy for BRIDGEGOOD, a web application that connects Creatives to professional opportunities. The platform is supported by Google.org.

    Shaun received an MA in Architectural & Urban Design and a BS in Advertising from San Jose State University. Prior to SJSU, he graduated with honors from Cal State East Bay with a BA in Digital Arts and was named “Distinguished Young Alumnus” of the academic year 2015.

    In September 2016, Diablo Magazine ranked Shaun #6 in their prestigious 40 Under 40 campaign. In March 2017, SF Business Times named Shaun 40 Under 40 alongside the Bay Area’s brightest CEO’s and Directors. In April, Cal State East Bay recognized Shaun as a 40 Under 40 “Civic Service & Activism” Recipient, Class of 2017.

     

    Live Music

    Gabriela

    Gabriela is a rising singer/songwriter based in Los Angeles and the greater Bay Area. Her versatility spans multiple genres and platforms of performance both live and recorded, including national and international commercial and film. She looks to inspire self responsibility, re-connection and individual and collective healing through the conduit of collaborative, multi-media art and expression.

    Having moved to Oakland at the age of 18, she created a professional career as a Bay Area performer for private and creative events, while concurrently pursuing music production, management, her own artistic creations and healing curriculums for 7 formative years before just recently transitioning South. Gabriela independently released her debut original EP “And Who Am I Today”, a 4 track collection in September of 2015. She will be releasing her first full length album in the Summer of 2018 and publishing a book of passages centered in tools for personal empowerment in the following future.

    2017 Board of Directors – Oakland Digital

    Tim RosenblattPresident

    Chelsea SeabronVice President

    Linda PoengTreasurer

    Kevin LouieSecretary

    Martin Kojnok

    Erica Hong

    Gert Lombard

    Lisa Sy

    Michael Shih

    TiYanna Long

    Allison Bernstein

    Katy McKenzie

     

    Purchase tickets and learn more at www.inspiration-awards.com. 

  • Design that Pops: Oakland Businesses Get a Fresh Start

    Through a collaboration managed by Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and AnewAmerica Community Corporation with partners: Oakland Digital Arts & Literacy Center, Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights, and The Unity Council, these organizations provide a spectrum of technical assistance services to businesses impacted by construction of AC Transit’s Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Project on International Boulevard.  In addition to technical assistance, a limited Business Assistance Fund (BAF) program is available to those most impacted. In conjunction with AC Transit, these programs were created by the City of Oakland to help business mitigate the new physical environment created by the BRT.

    Roció Navarro owns Artesanías y Botánica Del Sol. Although she has been in business for the last 18 years on the Boulevard, she decided to move her shop from 4030B to 5115 International, in hopes of increasing exposure.

    Yudy Herrera working with businesses along the BRT corridor.

    After a visit from Oakland Digital, a non profit that helps local business increase their marketing and digital presence, Designer Yudy Herrera assessed the business and determined they needed to modernize their brand. The first step: create a new custom logo able to be reproduced in both digital and  and print formats. The second step: build and optimize their social media presence including the creation of design elements, verify accounts and digital literacy. The final step: designing and ordering the business cards. Roció was so impressed by the look of Yudy’s creative solution that she ordered an 8’x 22’ banner to serve as a storefront sign.

    After over 15 hours of a collaborative design process, Roció reported that her sales increase $400 more on the day the signage was installed. Yudy says,

    Oakland Digital is thrilled to continue serving the businesses along International most impacted by the BRT project. We are now on our 8th year of providing digital literacy, equity, and tech inclusion. Our success stories like Roció’s keep us inspired and validates our mission that design is positively impacting our communities.

    Marsha Murrington, Senior Program Officer of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) explains the value of technical assistance to small businesses: “In the big picture, we are looking at introducing optimization tools that teach small businesses to become proactive in exploring ways to expand their customer base, to increase sales; and by introducing systems to enhance their operations also helps them become more efficient enterprises. We are hopeful that businesses like Artesanias y Botanica Del Sol will inspire change in others as it becomes more viable.”

    Learn more about Oakland Digital at www.oaklanddigital.org. Hire a local Designer for your next marketing project at www.bridgegood.com

  • Google.org pledges $50M to prep people for ‘the changing nature of work’

    Google.org pledges $50M to prep people for ‘the changing nature of work’

    Oakland Digital weekly work sessions from Google.org’s 188 The Embarcadero Community Space – combining Design, Engineering, and Thought Leadership. Photo courtesy bynd.com. 

    Google’s philanthropic arm is funding efforts to help workers adjust to the economic changes Google itself is helping to create.

    Google’s philanthropic arm, Google.org, announced Wednesday that it’s committing $50 million over two years “to help people prepare for the changing nature of work.”

    “The way we work is changing, and we want to make sure that as many people as possible can make the most of the new jobs, industries and opportunities that are emerging–some of which we couldn’t have imagined just a few years ago,” wrote Google.org president Jacquelline Fuller in a blog post.

    The economic and social shifts that are sure to disrupt the workforce in the coming decades will likely be driven in part by Google itself, which has taken an “AI-first” approach to business. In the meantime, Google offers some products that help connect workers with jobs.

    Its new philanthropic efforts focus on three areas where nonprofits could potentially help: Skills training, connecting job-seekers with positions that match their skills, and supporting low-wage workers. Google.org is initially funding groups in the US and Europe and plans to expand to other regions soon.

    In the area of skills training, Google.org announced it’s supporting Social Finance. The grant will fund the group’s research into which youth training programs most effectively use contributions from trainees, governments, and future employers.

    To help job seekers better connect with jobs, Google is backing Code for America, which helps people use government services for help in finding jobs, and Bayes Impact in France, which uses machine learning to deliver custom recommendations and tips to job seekers.

    To help low-wage workers, Google is supporting a program called Alia, run by the National Domestic Workers Alliance. Alia lets domestic workers, for a small monthly fee, pool their money to serve as a sort of insurance.

    The $50 million initiative comes on top of past commitments Google.org has made to building economic opportunity, such as its support for Oakland Digital, which equips low-income students with skills in graphic design and web development.

    International students working with Oakland Digital’s UX design team. Photo courtesy bynd.com. 

    Original article: http://www.zdnet.com/article/google-org-pledges-50m-to-prep-people-for-the-changing-nature-of-work/ by Stephanie Condon for Between the Lines | July 26, 2017

  • Oakland Digital honored at 2017 Impact Award | Kapor Center for Social Impact

    The Kapor Center for Social Impact presented their inaugural Impact Awards on Wednesday, June 21, 2017, in their uptown Oakland theater.

    The awards celebrated outstanding efforts to boost greater inclusion in tech entrepreneurship and in the tech ecosystem.

    Categories include:

    • Building an Inclusive Tech Ecosystem in Oakland
    • Promoting Access to Quality STEM Education
    • Fostering Diversity & Inclusion in the Tech Workforce
    • Gap-Closing Entrepreneurship

    Oakland Digital was honored at the 2017 Impact Awards, noted for “Building an Inclusive Tech Ecosystem in Oakland.” On behalf of our Board of Directors, Staff, and Beneficiaries, we would like to thank the Kapor Center for Social Impact for this award. 

    The Kapor Center launched its inaugural Impact Awards on June 21st, recognizing outstanding efforts to boost inclusion in tech entrepreneurship and in the tech ecosystem. Leslie Miley, Therese Lawless, Regan Patterson, Genius Plaza, and Oakland Digital each received commendations for their respective forward-looking work. TechCrunch’s Megan Rose Dickey served as the special guest moderator at the awards ceremony.