Advanced Computing in the Age of AI | Thursday, February 22, 2024

Salesforce Gives $20M to Education, Expanding Pathways into Tech and AI Careers 

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 11, 2023 -- Salesforce today announced more than $20 million in new grants to U.S. school districts, along with education and workforce development nonprofits preparing students for success.

These grants come at a critical time when schools, educators, and employers are navigating a rapidly changing world. Generative AI is transforming the classroom and the jobs that will be available in the future. With this funding, students will have more opportunities to take advanced courses, gain in-demand skills, and explore potential new careers. Funding will also support efforts from nonprofits to expand pathways into technology jobs, including AI, helping usher in a more equitable future.

“Companies and schools alike are racing to understand what AI means for young people – whether it be how it’s impacting homework assignments today to how to train students for the jobs of tomorrow,” said Suzanne DiBianca, EVP and Chief Impact Officer, Salesforce. “This funding will help educators and workforce development organizations prepare the next generations for success now and into the future.”

Salesforce Joins High School Students and Faculty in San Francisco to Mark the Occasion

As part of the announcement, Salesforce will today host a “Back to School” celebration at George Washington High School in San Francisco. The education nonprofit aiEDU will kick off the day with a hands-on AI workshop for students, followed by a student roundtable on AI, hosted by Salesforce leaders.

Additionally, there will be a press conference with San Francisco Mayor London Breed, San Francisco Unified School District Superintendent Matt Wayne, Ed.D, Oakland Unified School District Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell, Ed.D, and Salesforce executives Amy Weaver, Chief Financial Officer, and Suzanne DiBianca, Chief Impact Officer.

“As AI continues to transform our schools, workplaces, and society, education has never been more critical,” said San Francisco Mayor London Breed. “I’m proud of our city's long-standing commitment to the jobs of the future and thankful for Salesforce's investment to ensure the next generation is set up for success.”

“Salesforce has been an incredible partner to SFUSD for 11 years. Their contributions to San Francisco schools have been instrumental in helping give our students access to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) courses and preparing them for the jobs of the future,” said San Francisco Unified School District Superintendent Matt Wayne, Ed.D. “We are grateful to Salesforce for their ongoing commitment to the district and the students of San Francisco.”

The Impact of Salesforce’s 11-year Commitment to Education

In 2012, Salesforce made a commitment to support education in our communities and invest in the future workforce. What started as a $2.5 million grant that first year to middle school classrooms in San Francisco public schools has since grown to $233 million in support of education and workforce development around the world – and communities are seeing the impact.

Salesforce continues to invest heavily in the Bay Area, with more than half of this year’s investment going to San Francisco and Oakland schools and nonprofits, to help maintain the progress from the past decade. For example, at San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD), the funding has been used to expand its computer science curriculum.

Today, at least half of its 50,000 students have taken at least one computer science course, and there has been a 3x increase in computer science enrollment for Black, Latinx, and Native American/Indigenous students. In Oakland Unified School District (OUSD), Salesforce funding helped retain high performing diverse teachers, resulting in the lowest staff vacancy rate Oakland middle schools have had in four years.

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Source: Salesforce