BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Jobs in science and technology are in high demand. No company knows that better than Microsoft. Hundreds of Baltimore City students attended the corporation’s Minority Student Day.
Gigi Barnett explains those students may be the company’s future employees.
Some city students are looking at the technology of the future, but Microsoft wants them to begin controlling it now. That’s why hundreds of city students were hand-selected to attend the 20th annual “Minority Student Day” at the University of Baltimore.
“I think it’s really going to open my eyes to see what opportunities are out there,” said Amber Matthew, student.
Minority Student Day was organized by members of Blacks at Microsoft also called BAM. The group says students can learn first-hand what Microsoft engineers and IT professionals do and pick up a mentor while they’re at it.
“It’s because of those mentors that I’ve been able to stay in school and stay focused, and I can definitely say that having mentors in my corner has been a great aspect of growing up,” said Maurice Harried, Vivian T. Thomas Academy student.
Conference organizers say it’s important to attract teens to the engineering field now because nationwide there is a stark drop in the number of students who have an interest in math, science and technology. And that usually happens around the eighth grade.
“Many people get discouraged to go into the sciences and math. And a lot of cases, it tends to be males and young women who are very talented,” said Fred Humphries, Microsoft Vice President.
That’s why 11-grader Amber Matthew is here.
“At times it can be overwhelming, but we can really show to get out there girl power and show that we can do what guys can,” said Matthew.
The conference places students in college-class settings because BAM says it’s cultivating top students and possibly future employees.
“It’s over a million new jobs that will probably be created in the next few years in the information technology industry. And the key to jobs and what you’ll need for the workforce: education,” Humphries said.
Microsoft hosted the minority student conference in 10 other cities, including Atlanta, Detroit and New York.