The company has pledged to donate more than $50 million to a collection of nonprofit groups with the aim of improving diversity in the technology industry, according to Fortune.
The nonprofits that Apple is working with include the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, which provides scholarships and support to students in historically black colleges and universities, as well as the National Center for Women & Information Technology, which works to boost the number of women in technical positions.
“We wanted to create opportunities for minority candidates to get their first job at Apple,” Young Smith, Apple’s head of human resources, told Fortune. “There is tremendous upside to that and we are dogged about the fact that we can’t innovate without being diverse and inclusive.”
Reps for Apple did not immediately respond to our request for comment.
Corporate diversity has increasingly become a focus among some of the largest tech companies in recent months, with businesses like Microsoft, Google and Facebook releasing data on their own internal diversity breakdown. Apple’s numbers revealed an overwhelming male and white leadership and employee base, prompting CEO Tim Cook to state that he’s “not satisfied.”
Earlier this year, Intel’s CEO pledged to commit $300 million to improve diversity in tech. Other businesses like Microsoft have donated millions to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund in the past.
The announcement of Apple’s donation comes one day after the Cupertino company’s media event focused on the Apple Watch. The smartwatch has since received some mixed feedback.
Apple’s top execs are scheduled to appear at a shareholder meeting Tuesday, during which it’s likely they’ll discuss the new watch and perhaps the diversity push.
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