Keysight's Approach To Building a Better Planet Through Education
by Lea M. Baylis, Corporate Community Engagement Manager
As a global corporation we believe we have an obligation to be good community stewards. We take our corporate social responsibility (CSR) vision to Build a Better Planet seriously and apply that philosophy to our efforts in each of our 3 focus areas for community engagement - education, environmental sustainability, and health and wellness.
One of the ways that we add value to global communities is through our engagement with science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education programs. Our recent Corporate Social Responsibility Report highlights the fact that the company exceeded our goals for community impact work last year by reaching more than 145,000 students through STEM education outreach and delivering more than $315,000,000 in value to strengthening communities.
This work looks different in various communities around the world. What may be the best engagement model in the U.S. may not be the right fit for Malaysia, for example. As a result, our approach to education includes building a network of community support and partnerships that help support local and global needs. In addition, our focus on equitable access to STEM education is an important element of building a future diverse and skilled workforce that can drive sustainable communities into the future. Let’s explore how Keysight approaches STEM education partnerships to drive impact in this space.
Focus on Regional Needs
At Corporate Headquarters in Santa Rosa, California, the company has been invested and involved in the years-long process of launching a local college and career readiness program to empower students in under-resourced school districts by connecting them to career pathways in the local community. Sonoma Corps is a 2-year skill building program that supports students through their senior year of high school and provides opportunities for them to become paid interns at Keysight and other companies in the region after high school graduation. This initiative is being led by Sonoma County nonprofit Career Technical Education Foundation.
For 3 years and counting now, we have had Sonoma Corps interns on our headquarters site in Santa Rosa. This program has inspired some of the interns to pursue their own STEM interests, like Jocelyn Camacho, pictured above in a Sonoma Corps video, who enrolled in coding classes after being exposed to jobs she didn’t know existed before her internship at Keysight.
In addition to working with targeted programs for primary and secondary schools in our local communities, we have programs that engage universities and university labs around the world to support the company’s mission and continued focus on accelerating innovation to connect and secure the world. These engagements help support both the university programs as well as individual students. In fact, through this work, in 2021 Keysight earned a mention as a top supporter of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Engineering Schools, according to U.S. Black Engineer Magazine.
Global Reach for Girls in STEM
Recently, Keysight has also engaged several new strategic partnerships to broaden the reach of our STEM education work internationally. One such strategic partnership is with Technovation, a global tech education nonprofit that inspires girls to be leaders and problem solvers in their lives and their community. Employees from Keysight Spain had been involved with the Technovation program for years, as mentors, judges, and regional sponsors, and suggested a corporate partnership based on their positive experiences with making an impact.
Focusing on creating opportunities for girls in STEM has been important to Keysight since day one. In fact, some of the company’s longest running community events are our Introduce a Girl to Engineering Days, which are held annually at Keysight sites across the globe. By partnering with Technovation, Keysight can deepen this impact by supporting the STEM education of girls and young women in over 120 countries.
Building Technology Skills for the Future
Keysight’s approach to supporting STEM education around the world is to find common interests and start building a better future together. We implement an individualized approach to each region’s STEM education needs because educational solutions are not one-size-fits-all. Listening to our communities about their needs and focusing on what we can build together has enabled us to invest in the future of our communities by supporting STEM education around the world.
Our work in support of STEM education initiatives that build prosperous communities is as important as ever to continue to make an impact around the world. After all, the STEM students of today are the problem solvers of tomorrow!