Education is a key component of our corporate social responsibility strategy. We believe that providing learning opportunities to individuals — particularly those from underrepresented populations — is essential for creating an inclusive, collaborative and sustainable world.
We also believe it is key to building the next generation of digital leaders that help us overcome the talent gaps of today. In the 2021 CGI Voice of Our Clients, 49% of the client executives we spoke with identify talent gaps as one of their biggest barriers to digital transformation.
As part of our commitment to support initiatives that inspire and educate more people across society, this year, at Sibos, the world’s premier financial services event, we sponsored the event’s official charity, Teach For All. A global charity, Teach For All is a partnership of 60 independent organizations that recruit and develop promising future leaders to teach in their nations’ under-resourced schools and communities. Through teacher fellowships, the global network helps to mentor and support teachers to stay in the profession. Today, the Teach For All network reaches more than 1.1 million students and has 15,000 teachers in 60 countries and 80,000 alumni, affecting change worldwide.
During the event, Steve Starace, Senior Vice-President of CGI’s U.S. East operations, was interviewed on Sibos TV about CGI’s commitment to inspire and educate more people across society. “Globally, we engage in lots of different types of initiatives, from standing up digital literacy centers in India, to running the I.T. Girl Challenge, to offering university scholarships to help fund young adults’ dreams of higher education, to having our own training-to-employment schools in France, the Czech Republic, and close to me here in New Jersey,” he explained.
Steve highlighted the STEM@CGI program that inspires teachers and school-aged children to learn more about science, technology, engineering and math. “Often in collaboration with clients, we work with local schools and universities in a variety of ways, from consulting on their curriculum, to providing scholarships, to hosting STEM camps,” he summarized.
In 2020, CGI hosted 205 virtual camps with nearly 45,000 participants globally. Going virtual helped expand the reach compared to when only in-person camps were organized. In 2021, with a return to a mix of virtual and in-person activities, in the U.S. alone, we held more than 50 camps that reached 12,000 participants. Sixty percent of these events were organized in collaboration with our clients.
We recognize the growing need for a larger and more diverse talent pool to help organizations like ours and our clients accelerate a successful and safe digital future for all. And it is clear that we all have a duty as corporate citizens to invest in educating future talent and to do so in an inclusive manner. It’s not only good for society; it’s also good for business.