Verizon executive says the company's recent $44 million investment in upskilling is part of its duty to prepare job seekers for the future

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Verizon executive says the company's recent $44 million investment in upskilling is part of its duty to prepare job seekers for the future

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Verizon executive says the company's recent $44 million investment in upskilling is part of its duty to prepare job seekers for the future
Rose Kirk, senior vice president and chief corporate social responsibility officer for Verizon, said more companies are rethinking their purpose in society.Verizon
  • Verizon is investing $44 million in an upskilling program to help Americans unemployed by the coronavirus pandemic, as well as Americans looking for better jobs.
  • People who are Black or Latinx (a gender-neutral alternative to Latino or Latina), unemployed, or without a four-year-degree will be given priority admissions.
  • The upskilling program is part of Citizen Verizon, Verizon's recently unveiled responsible business plan.
  • Rose Kirk, senior vice president and chief corporate social responsibility officer for Verizon, told Business Insider that the company has a duty to help the labor force.

Last week, Verizon announced it is investing $44 million in an upskilling program to help Americans unemployed by the coronavirus pandemic, and those looking for better jobs.

People who are Black or Latinx (a gender-neutral alternative to Latino or Latina), unemployed, or without a four-year-degree will be given priority admissions into the program that will train students to get jobs like junior cloud practitioner, junior web developer, IT help desk technician, and digital marketing analyst.

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Rose Kirk, senior vice president and chief corporate social responsibility officer for Verizon, told Business Insider that the company has a duty to help the labor force.

"I think what's important about this program and this $44 million investment for us is that it really is all about understanding that we have an obligation to prepare individuals for future jobs," she said.

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The upskilling program is part of Citizen Verizon, Verizon's new responsible business plan that includes a goal of preparing 500,000 people for jobs of the future by 2030.

The move to upskill half a million people comes as more corporate executives focus on stakeholder capitalism, the idea that companies exist to not only benefit their shareholders, but their workforces and society.

Amazon, PwC, IBM, and AT&T have launched major upskilling programs to retrain their workforces or attract new talent in recent years. And digital upskilling has increased during the pandemic as millions of Americans look for in-demand jobs, Reuters reported.

Business leaders, she said, have a responsibility to care for their workers and communities.

"We have to care about enabling individuals to compete for jobs, to be successful, to have economic opportunity as society continues to move us forward," she said.

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