Fargo Firsts: BAM Minority Student Day
by Emily Catan, Fargo | March 2, 2018
As part of our mission to empower others, Microsoft has been dedicated to engaging with local communities and providing learning opportunities to young adults. In light of this, Microsoft’s Fargo campus hosted its first Annual BAM Minority Student Day on February 9th, 2018.
Presented by the Fargo chapter Blacks @ Microsoft (BAM), the day was filled with breakout sessions, keynotes, and activities to enable selected local high school and college students to experience a “Day in the Life” at Microsoft. The day kicked off with a keynote from the Founder and CEO of uCodeGirl, Betty Gronneberg, followed by a LinkedIn Branding session, Career Panel, MicroBit coding session, and HoloLens demo. Throughout the day, students were also able to network with Microsoft employees and engage in Q&A sessions.
“The key benefit is that the students get to come to Microsoft and explore different career opportunities in the technology industry as well as get exposed to products. But the biggest asset is the opportunity for them to interact with Microsoft employees — to be able to ask them questions and get guidance,” said Kelsey Gordon, BAM Fargo Chair
BAM Fargo board members worked tirelessly to make the experience unforgettable for students, alongside the Microsoft Fargo Site Team. BAM members also volunteered throughout the day to sit with students and participated in activities.
Casie Holzwarth, BAM Fargo Talent and Acquisition Lead shared, “BAM Minority Student Day was such a great event and experience to be a part of. Seeing how the students and everyone involved were engaged the whole time really made the work put in so worth every minute. I genuinely believe it was a day that so many of us won’t forget, and I can’t wait to see how it continues to improve and grow from year to year!”
The experience was truly a learning moment for both the students and Microsoft employees, showing us all how much we can impact our community and the mindset of the young adults around us. BAM members and volunteers felt humbled to meet with such passionate and curious students, giving them an opportunity to learn and grow.
As one of our career panelists, Dwayne McNeese, Customer Success Manager said: “The exceptional level of preparedness and genuine enthusiasm displayed by the students immediately struck a chord with me. The energy they provided set the tone for a memorable event… I was honored to be chosen for the panel. The inspiration drawn from the experience left an impression I won’t soon forget. I look forward to next year!”
BAM Minority Student Day marks a first for Fargo’s campus and its meaning speaks volumes for the community, especially throughout February Black History Month. BAM Fargo will continue to host the event in the coming years to dedicate time to the local community.
A little more about BAM
Blacks at Microsoft is a national Employee Resource Group that focuses on developing local and international communities, empowering individuals that bring diverse perspectives and backgrounds. BAM is dedicated to growing these individuals into future leaders while fostering an inclusive culture and community at Microsoft
With this mission in mind, Fargo BAM is dedicated to providing a sense of belonging and community for its members here at the Microsoft Fargo campus. In addition to volunteer work and events, BAM Fargo hosts social events and gatherings in the community to make the Fargo Moorhead area a home to all.