Elizabeth Weise and Jessica Guynn, USA TODAY
SAN FRANCISCO (USA Today) — Top universities turn out black and Hispanic computer science and computer engineering graduates at twice the rate that leading technology companies hire them, a USA TODAY analysis shows.
Technology companies blame the pool of job applicants for the severe shortage of blacks and Hispanics in Silicon Valley.
But these findings show that claim “does not hold water,” said Darrick Hamilton, professor of economics and urban policy at The New School in New York.
“What do dominant groups say? ‘We tried, we searched but there was nobody qualified.’ If you look at the empirical evidence, that is just not the case,” he said.
As technology becomes a major engine of economic growth in the U.S. economy, tech companies are under growing pressure to diversify their workforces, which are predominantly white, Asian and male. Leaving African Americans and Hispanics out of that growth increases the divide between haves and have-nots. And the technology industry risks losing touch with the diverse nation — and world — that forms its customer base.