T.D. Jakes Foundation Weekly Updates – October 19, 2020

October 19, 2020

To help you navigate these uncertain times, we’ve compiled timely news and resources related to small business, education and connectivity. We hope this provides both information and comfort as we continue to weather these challenges.

T.D. Jakes Foundation in Action

Hattie Hill, President & CEO of the T.D. Jakes Foundation, joined Carrie Freeman Parsons on Monday, October 19, for a virtual discussion on the powerful work being done in Dallas. During the conversation, the influential leaders highlighted collaborations that go beyond CSR and simple philanthropy, offering insights into how everyone can be a change-maker in their own backyard. Watch here.

Today, in the United States, there are approximately 2.6 million Black-owned businesses—a number has risen by more than 30 percent in the past decade. Click here to visit the T.D. Jakes Foundation’s helpful resource guide to help those looking for ways to support Black-owned businesses.

Need additional resources around STEAM? The T.D. Jakes Foundation has compiled a list of STEAM resources for the arts, coding, and engineering and even resources specifically for kids and teachers. Check out our STEAM resources here.

Employment and Training Opportunities

Amazon Web Services (AWS) re/Start is partnering with workforce development programs around the country to provide free coursework and cover fees for participants to get certified in AWS cloud computing. Read more about the program’s goal to help unemployed and underemployed people, as well as candidates with no tech background and/or limited experience in a traditional job setting gain an entry-level cloud computing job upon graduation on CNBCmakeit.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Workplace

To fight for racial equity, Starbucks is aiming to fill 30% of its corporate jobs, and 40% of its retail and manufacturing jobs, with people of color by 2025. To reach this goal, Starbucks is adding anti-bias content to its hiring processes and will also create a mentorship program that pairs employees with senior vice presidents. Read the full story in CBS News.

A new startup, BrightHire, is attempting to redefine the hiring process by removing biases and helping companies monitor their goals of fairness and diversity with software that prompts interviewers to address specific topics while recording interviews to allow them to be analyzed for future reference. The software not only helps to monitor the performance of the candidate, but also the interviewer, taking a step forward in improving the hiring processes for all. Read the full story via Inc.

Michael Collins, in Fortune, writes: “For Black Americans, fundamental changes in both hiring practices and bachelor’s degree attainment must be equal partners in an equitable economic recovery,” in a column that outlines the steps we need to take to ensure economic equity and justice as we begin to recover in a post-COVID-19 economy.

A new report commissioned by California Partners Project found that women have filled 669 board seats in California since the passage of a 2018 bill that requires publicly held companies headquartered in the state to have at least one woman on its board of directors by the end of 2019. Companies with more diverse boards have been found to drive better business performance across several metrics. Read the exclusive story via Fortune.

Younger generations are struggling amid COVID-19. Recent college graduates are having trouble finding their first jobs and many college students have been forced to drop out of school altogether. Of course, these issues, once again, disproportionately affect students and graduates of color. So, Harvard Business Review recently looked at how employers can recruit and develop more young people of color to correct decades of inequity as we begin to emerge from the pandemic.

Small Business Assistance

Comcast’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiative sparked the creation of its new program “Comcast Rise,” which went live October 12. The program is geared to minority-owned small businesses impacted by COVID-19, offering resources such as grants, equipment, internet access, commercial production, free ads and marketing advice. Read the full story via Deadline.

Digital Divide

To close the digital divide, which was exacerbated by COVID-19, Dylan Zajac, a 17-year-old senior student at Manhattan’s LREI- High School, founded the nonprofit Computers 4 People. The organization collects and refurbishes computers to provide to students in surrounding underserved communities. Read Dylan’s story in Yahoo.

Education Update

Dallas Summer Musicals (DSM) and Dallas Independent School District (Dallas ISD) have come together to launch a new professional development program, ConnectEDU powered by PNC. ConnectEDU’s goal will provide Dallas ISD educators with the opportunity to engage and learn from high-profile directors, choreographers, acting coaches, dancers and other theatre professionals. The next session will be held on October 29 and 30, and will cover best practices for cultural experiences of students. Read the full story in Dallas ISD News.

Presidential Election

As the 2020 presidential election quickly approaches, NPR has put together an outline of both presidential candidates’ plans to address racial disparities within the United States. Find out more here.

Together, we can and will get through this.



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