Thursday, March 23, 2017

Dear Howard University Community,

I am proud to announce a new partnership with Google and the launch of ‘Howard West,’ a three-month, summer Computer Science residency for rising juniors and seniors in the University’s Computer Science program. The residency includes a dedicated workspace on Google’s Mountain View campus and a generous stipend to cover housing and other expenses in Silicon Valley.

This serves as the realization of my vision to expand Howard’s presence to the West Coast. It is also a major step forward for Google’s efforts to recruit and retain diverse technical talent. Howard West will produce hundreds of industry-ready Black computer science graduates, future leaders with the power to transform the global technology space into a stronger, more accurate reflection of the world around us. In partnership with Google, we envisioned this program with bold outcomes in mind – to advance a strategy that leverages Howard’s high quality faculty and Google’s expertise, while also rallying the tech industry and other thought leaders around the importance of diversity in business and the communities they serve.

Howard West will provide one more opportunity for Howard University to offer innovative, world-class learning experiences to its students, preparing them for work and leadership in the community. HU students will receive Silicon Valley experience, learn from top technology professionals and advance their training and know-how. They will also learn valuable skills such as teamwork, problem-solving, communications strategies, decision-making and creativity, while using their academic knowledge in real-life contexts. The networking and access will ensure participants are more than ready for the workforce and help them compete in an increasingly global environment.

Howard and Google’s longstanding partnership with the Google in Residence (GIR) program was the foundation for Howard West. Since GIR embeds Google engineers as faculty at Howard and other Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Howard West was a natural and logical next step. The program connects the geographical, academic and cultural divide between declaring a major in Computer Science and landing a job in tech.

Within five years, 740 students will have matriculated. Howard West will serve the entire tech ecosystem – not just Google. For the University, this is another opportunity to provide innovative, world-class learning experiences to its students, preparing them for work and leadership in the community. Students will obtain 12 credits toward graduation as instruction through an immersion curriculum as part of the program.

Many Howard leadership and faculty helped make this program possible. I’d like to extend many thanks to the excellent faculty and staff in the College of Engineering and Architecture, the Department of Computer Science, and the many others that tirelessly supported this effort.

Excellence in Truth and Service,
Wayne A. I. Frederick, M.D., MBA