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Microsoft pledges $75 million to expose more kids to computer sciences

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Just like the City of New York, Microsoft believes that it's best to expose kids to computer sciences as soon as possible to prepare them for the growing number of tech jobs out there. That's why Satya Nadella and company have decided to invest a total of $75 million into its YouthSpark initiative within the next three years. YouthSpark will distribute cash donations/grants and resources to various non-profit organizations across the globe, which pledge to increase kids' -- especially youths from under-represented backgrounds -- access to computer science education. One of the groups that will be benefit from this decision is Microsoft's own Technology Education and Literacy in Schools or TEALS program. It pairs up Microsoft engineers (among other tech professionals) with high school teachers for training, and those teachers are expected to teach their students what they learned, in turn.

Microsoft President Brad Smith told USA Today that this move is a response to a serious problem in the industry: the lack of diversity. By exposing kids to computer sciences early, the company hopes to get them interested in pursuing a career in tech. "We don't have enough people in the country with the skills to fill the jobs that our industry is going to create," he said. "Even more than that, we are not creating opportunities for everyone across the country. We see that most notably in the shortage of African Americans, Latinos, girls and women entering the tech sector."

[Image credit: Getty/Leren Lu]

In this article: microsoft, youthspark
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