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These Four Black Women Just Made History at Harvard University

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Claudine Gay, Bridget Terry-Long, Michelle A. Williams, and Tomiko Brown-Nagin

Cambridge, MA — For the first time in Harvard’s 382-year history, four of the university’s academic departments will be led by African-American women. Professor Claudine Gay, the latest appointee, will become the first woman and the first African-American to lead the university’s prestigious Faculty of Arts and Sciences.

The Crimson Harvard reports that on August 15, Professor Claudine Gay will be occupying the post as the dean of Harvard’s flagship faculty, the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. She is hoping it would inspire other women and people of color just like how she was inspired when former University President Drew G. Faust became Harvard’s first female president.

“If my presence in this role affirms someone’s sense of belonging and ownership, the same way Drew’s appointment affirmed my own sense of belonging, then I think that’s great,” Gay said.

Gay will be joining three other Black women who are currently seated as department heads. In 2016, Michelle A. Williams became the first black women to lead the Longwood-based School of Public Health. Tomiko Brown-Nagin and Bridget Terry-Long were also the first Black women who became deans of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study and the Graduate School of Education in April and May, respectively.

Many are saying these appointments sparked a significant turning point at the University that only has underrepresented minorities make up only about 8 percent of its faculty.

“To now be moving into a phase of Harvard’s life where people who don’t meet that profile are now empowered to advance Harvard, it just signals that Harvard is getting ready for a new future for itself and for the country and for the world,” said John S. Wilson, a known advocate for the university’s diversity.

Meanwhile, University President Lawrence S. Bacow said, “Each of these exceptional individuals was selected because they enjoy reputations as distinguished scholars and educators, and because they are widely admired by their colleagues as extremely effective academic leaders”

He continued, “They were selected not because of their race or gender but because they each rose to the top of a rigorous search process.”

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Amazon’s Pledge

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Amazon Pledges to Upskill 100,000 U.S. Employees for In-Demand Jobs by 2025

Amazon will invest over $700 million to provide upskilling training programs for one in three of its employees across the U.S.

Programs will help Amazonians from all backgrounds access training to move into highly skilled technical and non-technical roles across the company’s corporate offices, tech hubs, fulfillment centers, retail stores, and transportation network, or pursue career paths outside of Amazon

Based on a review of its workforce and analysis of U.S. hiring, Amazon’s fastest growing highly skilled jobs over the last five years include data mapping specialist, data scientist, solutions architect and business analyst, as well as logistics coordinator, process improvement manager and transportation specialist within our customer fulfillment network

Employee upskilling investment builds on Amazon’s $15 minimum wage and comprehensive benefits including medical insurance, 401k savings plan, and generous parental leave

Amazon’s Upskilling 2025 pledge invests in a range of new upskilling programs to serve employees from all backgrounds and Amazon locations. Programs include Amazon Technical Academy, which equips non-technical Amazon employees with the essential skills to transition into, and thrive in, software engineering careers; Associate2Tech, which trains fulfillment center associates to move into technical roles regardless of their previous IT experience; Machine Learning University, offering employees with technical backgrounds the opportunity to access machine learning skills via an on-site training program; AmazonCareer Choice, a pre-paid tuition program designed to train fulfillment center associates in high-demand occupations of their choice; Amazon Apprenticeship, a Department of Labor certified program that offers paid intensive classroom training and on-the-job apprenticeships with Amazon; and AWS Training and Certification, which provide employees with courses to build practical AWS Cloud knowledge that is essential to operating in a technical field.

“Through our continued investment in local communities in more than 40 states across the country, we have created tens of thousands of jobs in the U.S. in the past year alone,” said Beth Galetti, Senior Vice President, HR. “For us, creating these opportunities is just the beginning. While many of our employees want to build their careers here, for others it might be a stepping stone to different aspirations. We think it’s important to invest in our employees, and to help them gain new skills and create more professional options for themselves. With this pledge, we’re committing to support 100,000 Amazonians in getting the skills to make the next step in their careers.”

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Subcontractors Opportunity

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ST. PHILIP’S COLLEGE IS THE HOST SITE OF A JOB INFORMATION SESSION FOR POTENTIAL SUBCONTRACTORS IN A HALF-BILLION-DOLLAR CONSTRUCTION PROJECT—A 12-STORY UHS HOSPITAL SERVING CHILDREN AND WOMEN

SAN ANTONIO (June 26, 2019)–––St. Philip’s College is the host site of an information session for potential subcontractors in a half-billion-dollar construction project with a bevy of jobs to fill.

A capital improvement at University Hospital’s main campus in the South Texas Medical Center includes a 12-story hospital serving children and women.

The subcontractor job information session for the $500 million project is June 29 from 9 a.m. to noon in the college’s 600-seat Watson Fine Arts Center at 1801 Martin Luther King Drive. Parking and admission are both free. Guests should look for event parking in front of the college’s large blue Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award signage on the auditorium exterior that is visible from Martin Luther King Drive.

The project is by far the largest single project the college has supported as a facility-leasing community partner for an emerging job opportunity. Guests should also note that St. Philip’s College operates the city’s most advanced community college-level training facilities for most of the construction subcontractor—and medical technology—job opportunities related to this project with a November 2019 groundbreaking date and a 2022 completion date. 

For subcontractor details on the June 29 information session, contact UHS director of supply diversity Edward Cruz, Jr., at (210) 358-9112,edward.cruzjr@uhs-sa.com. For leasing details at the SPC Watson Fine Arts Center, contact college technical director-auditorium manager Russell Calder at (210) 486-2706, rcalder@alamo.edu. Find details for St. Philip’s College education in the types of professions related to this $500 million project at alamo.edu/spc.

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1st African American USAA Chairman to Retire

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Retired U.S. Air Force Gen. Lester Lyles has announced the next USAA’s membership meeting in August will be the last as chairman.
Since 2004 General Lyles has been on USAA’s board of directors. He told members that he deeply appreciates their trust and thanked them “for your loyalty through the years” in a recent letter that was part of the annual membership report.

Born April 20, 1946 General Lyles is a former United States Air Force general, Vice Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force, and Commander, Air Force Materiel Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. After retirement from the Air Force in 2003, he became a company director for General Dynamics, DPL Inc., KBR Incorporated, Precision Castparts Corp., MTC Technologies, Battelle Memorial Institute and USAA. Lyles is also a Trustee of Analytic Services and a Managing Partner of Four Seasons Ventures, LLC.

In 2017, Lyles earned $461,034 from his role as board chairman, up from $449,910 in 2016. In 2018, Lyles earned $458,499 in salary for the role, records show.

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