Blacks at Microsoft Group Holds Annual Technology Day For Underrepresented High School Students

REDMOND, Wash., Feb. 5, 2004 — To encourage broader access to technology and education, the Blacks at Microsoft (BAM) employee group will hold its annual Blacks at Microsoft Minority Student Day (BMSD) this Friday, Feb. 6, 2004. Jeff Raikes, Microsoft group vice president of Productivity and Business Services and executive sponsor of BAM, will kick off the day with a brief presentation on this year’s theme of Putting Potential in Motion, followed by a Q & A session with local Puget Sound students as well as those at corresponding events on Microsoft campuses in Charlotte, N.C., and Mountain View, Calif., via webcast.

In 1992, BAM established scholarships to help minority students realize their goal of a career in technology. The recipients are also considered for a paid high school internship at Microsoft before starting college. Yared Ayele, a University of Washington junior, had his BAM scholarship and his internship renewed for two concurrent years.

Ayele, who is applying to the university’s computer science program, describes his BMSD experience this way: “My view about Microsoft changed, not only as a corporation, but as an environment for a student with my interests and background. The positive experiences and benefits that come along with being an intern and being associated with BAM are endless.”

Simultaneous to the event in Redmond, BMSD activities will be conducted at Microsoft field locations in Charlotte, N.C., and Mountain View, Calif. More than 300 students are expected to attend this year’s event in each location and participate in interactive discussions, panels and a product fair showcasing Microsoft® Windows® XP Media Center Edition 2004, Windows Mobile (TM) software for Smartphones, the Xbox®
video game system, Microsoft Office and advanced learning technologies. Microsoft Corp. employees will act as mentors during the program, sharing information about scholarships, and educational and career opportunities.

Microsoft’s desire to increase the availability of technology resources, coupled with the efforts of BAM to reach kids in regional communities, have exposed hundreds of students to career opportunities in information technology since BMSD was launched in 1990. Almost 50 percent of Microsoft’s high school interns in 2003 were referred by the company’s technology programs.

What: Blacks at Microsoft Minority Student Day

Where:

  • Microsoft’s Redmond, Wash., campus: Building 33

  • Microsoft’s Charlotte, N.C., campus: 8055 Microsoft Way

  • Microsoft’s Mountain View, Calif., campus: Building 1

Who: Student participants; also open to the media

When: Friday, Feb. 6, 2004

R.S.V.P.: Mara Hobler, Waggener Edstrom, (425) 638-7000, marah@wagged.com

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