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2015 Cisco Corporate Social Responsibility Report: Society

Cisco Corporate Social Responsibility strategy prioritizes the issues that are most important to our business and to our stakeholders, identified through a formal CSR materiality assessment. We use the Cisco CSR Report to communicate our approach, objectives, progress, and challenges around five high-level priorities. This morning, we’ll focus on Society:

Cisco has been integral in the growth of the Internet, and we recognize that the growing number of connections can help solve some of the world’s most pressing social issues. Through our social investments, we empower global problem solvers to harness technology to address these challenges. In the video below, Cisco’s Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Tae Yoo, discusses Cisco’s efforts to speed the pace of social change around the world.

Kathy Mulvany, Vice President of Cisco Corporate Affairs, believes technology is a tool that can make the world a better place:

“Whether creating better access to education and healthcare, restoring communications after disaster strikes, or helping nonprofits better serve more people, information and communications technology (ICT) can strengthen communities and improve lives.”

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Aironet 1850 Series APs Help Education World

AN39409The Chartwell School in Seaside, CA and the Namibia University of Science and Technology might be on opposite sides of the world, but both schools know that Cisco Aironet 1850 Series Access Points (AP) are the best products to deploy a wireless network. An 802.11ac Wave 2-based access point, the Aironet 1850 is the most cutting-edge AP on the market today. Both schools had the same goal: each wanted to make sure that their wireless networks were ready for the onslaught of 802.11ac Wave 2 devices that will be heading their way in the coming years.

The staff at the Chartwell School needed to upgrade its Wi-Fi network to better support its students who have language-based learning differences. Chartwell turned to Cisco and not only deployed the Cisco Aironet 1850 access points but also Cisco Mobility Express to bring support to its modernized learning environment.

Mobility Express easily handles the bandwidth increase and supports wireless multitasking both at school and at students’ homes. The school’s network is now better equipped to handle high-bandwidth learning tools, multi-device connectivity and newer cloud-based teaching solutions.

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Cisco, Greenlight for Girls Inspire Women to Pursue STEM Careers

This blog was originally published on the Cisco Learning Network.

I’m not an engineer. I’m not technical. I didn’t pursue STEM studies in university, either.  So, why am I making so much noise and effort around getting more girls and women into STEM? Simply put, I’m an “advocate” and a “voice” willing to amplify my belief in the growing need to get more girls and women involved in STEM fields.

The bug bit me five years ago when I joined Cisco as a Technical Services Manager. Prior to working at Cisco, I was a people manager at MasterCard. I had little exposure to the technical side of the business, but shortly after starting, I found myself managing engineers for the first time. It was quite an experience, and a positive one at that! I had the chance to realize and break down all the stereotypes about engineers. I came to see each one as an incredible, intelligent, unique person that I was lucky to work with.

My teams were about 15 to 20% women, which was the complete opposite of what I was used to before my time at Cisco. Hiring women into the roles proved a frequent challenge at the time, with both a lack of female candidates and a very non-diverse team of interviewers. I began working with engineers in the Middle East and learned about their challenges in pursuing STEM studies. Some were discouraged by their family and friends, while others had trouble enrolling in classes at their local universities.

Hearing their stories fueled my interest and drive to make a difference. It was just too obvious; something had to be done, and I wanted to be part of that “something!” Not all of these women were willing or comfortable to speak up about the challenges they were facing so, I was ready to be their “voice.”

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What I Learned at Grace Hopper: Collaboration Is Crucial for Improving Gender Diversity in Tech

In October I had the privilege of attending the Grace Hopper Celebration for the first time. I am truly in awe of how transformative and inspiring this conference is.

Grace Hopper is the largest event for women in computing. It’s a place for women to come together and get inspired by other women who are inventing and innovating. After three days of amazing keynotes and technical sessions, I can honestly say that I have never been more proud to be a woman in tech!

Where My Girls At?
I started my career in 2008 and quickly became passionate about improving gender diversity in tech. The photo of my first team may help you understand why. Taken within my first few months of joining a large tech company, it’s a great snapshot of a typical lunch outing with my team. Believe it or not, this was not a staged photo. I was really the only woman in attendance.

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Cisco IT Promotes STEM Initiatives

My previous blog about science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) highlighted examples of how Cisco IT is supporting STEM initiatives through mentoring, IT training, and job programs with schools in local communities. Here I’d like to spotlight the Boys and Girls in Leadership and STEM program, which aims to motivate middle school youth to consider STEM careers and to find their inner leader.

A large group of Cisco IT volunteers, led by four talented and motivated females, implemented this program over the course of three months. Originally it was intended to reach only girls and promote STEM and leadership, but the organizers quickly concluded that true positive impact would be best achieved by equally reaching out to both genders. The approach follows a systematic, scalable framework that immerses these young minds in technology, leadership, teamwork, and the art of the possible.

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