Fresh off its big smartwatch event, Apple is donating more than $50 million to groups that help promote diversity in the workplace.
Specifically, Apple is donating to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, a non-profit that aims to help students at HBCUs, or Historically Black Colleges and Universities. The fund’s mission is to “partner with our member-schools to increase access, retention and graduation rates of students, identify and prepare students attending member-schools who have significant leadership potential, and create a pipeline for employers to highly-qualified member-school students and alumni”
The company is also partnering with the National Center for Women and Information Technology, “a non-profit community of more than 600 universities, companies, non-profits, and government organizations nationwide working to increase women’s participation in computing and technology.”
According to Fortune, the majority ($40 million) will be headed to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund.
Everyone knows the state of diversity in tech is far from ideal. Apple’s last diversity report revealed that 70 percent of its employees are male and 55 percent are white. When it comes to leadership, those number increase to 72 percent and 64 percent, respectively.
Apple is far from the only Silicon Valley leader with this sort of skew.
CEO Tim Cook has publicly stated his dissatisfaction with this.
“Apple is committed to transparency, which is why we are publishing statistics about the race and gender makeup of our company. Let me say up front: As CEO, I’m not satisfied with the numbers on this page. They’re not new to us, and we’ve been working hard for quite some time to improve them. We are making progress, and we’re committed to being as innovative in advancing diversity as we are in developing our products,” he said.
Image via Rob DiCaterino, Wikimedia Commons