We support local cultural and educational institutions like the Seattle Art Museum, through cash grants and product donations.
While Microsoft has operations around the globe, our company and nearly 42,000 of our employees–and their families–call Washington State home. We have a keen interest in the continued health and vitality of our state and work to ensure a high quality of life for residents and a competitive economic climate for businesses. Microsoft advances community and public affairs initiatives that aim to keep Washington State a great place to live and work.
Our top priority in Washington State is helping build a world-class education system that improves educational opportunities and outcomes for all students and serves as an economic, cultural and creative engine for the state. We work with educators, policymakers and community leaders to ensure that students can develop the skills and commitment to lifelong learning necessary to succeed in a workplace – and a world – that’s increasingly complex, technologically driven, and globally competitive. We have a particular focus on improving access, participation and outcomes in STEM education to ensure our students are prepared for the jobs being created in our state. We support efforts across the education system, including:
We support programs that help children enter kindergarten ready to learn and help eliminate the achievement gap, right from the start. Thrive by Five Washington is helping families emphasize numeracy development in addition to traditional literacy. The United Way of King County’s Parent-Child Home Program is an in-home school readiness program for 2- to 4-year-olds and their parents.
We support programs and policies that help students reach established learning goals in reading, math and science and help reduce achievement gaps and increase college readiness of high school graduates, especially in math, science and computer science. Microsoft help found the nonprofit Washington STEM to advance excellence, equity and innovation in STEM teaching and learning. And, to help increase access to high quality computer science courses in schools, Microsoft created TEALS, where industry engineers teach alongside high school teachers. Microsoft also helped found Code.org to scale up teacher training programs and drive demand with students.
YouthSpark is Microsoft’s company-wide commitment to empower 300 million young people around the world with opportunities for education, employment, and entrepreneurship. Our goal is to get more students, especially girls and underrepresented minorities, to pursue and persist in STEM education. Microsoft offers tech training and outreach programs such as DigiGirlz, and we invest in programs at nonprofits CityYear, FIRST Robotics, YearUp, Girls Who Code and the Boys and Girls Clubs. A full list of our YouthSpark programs may be found on our YouthSpark Hub.
Our priority work in higher education is to help ensure more students can gain college degrees and/or career credentials, especially in high-demand STEM and healthcare fields. We do this through our signature investment and leadership in the Washington Opportunity Scholarship Program – an innovative public/private partnership that provides funding and support to low and middle income students pursuing STEM and healthcare degrees. We also support policies that renew the state’s longstanding investment in higher education, increase high-demand degree production and grow research and development programs at the state’s research universities.