Report: Silicon Valley firms missing qualified Hispanics and blacks in hiring

Silicon Valley firms recruit from the same stable of elite universities, a practice that contributes to the companies missing out on qualified ethnic and racial minorities, USA Today reports.

Hispanics make up 6.5 percent and blacks 4.5 percent of all recipients of bachelor’s degrees in computer science from 179 research universities in North America that offer doctorate degrees, according to a 2013 survey by the Computing Research Association.

But among the combined workforces of seven elite tech firms that reported workforce demographics this year, roughly 3 percent were Hispanic and 2 percent were black.

What accounts for the difference?

The article says that when it comes to recruiting, these firms tend to zero in on a handful of universities, such as Stanford, MIT, UC Berkeley, UCLA and Carnegie Melon. The companies may compete for graduates from those institutions and overlook qualified people at other prestigious research universities.

Nationwide, Hispanics earn about $16,000 less than the equivalent white worker in the computer industry, according to a study by the American Institute of Economic Research that looked at whether there was a wage impact from foreign workers with H-1B visas. Blacks earned about $3,000 less than whites and Asians earn about $8,000 less.

But when looking at employment in computer jobs, the report found that blacks make up 9 percent of the workforce nationwide and Hispanics make up 5 percent.


Photo: Google workers walk outside company headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., Thursday, April 12, 2012. (Paul Sakuma/Associated Press)


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