Cloud-Now | CloudNOW Scholarships — Pilot Results and Plans for Scaling Impact
CloudNOW is a non-profit consortium of the leading women in cloud computing and converging technologies, providing a forum for networking, knowledge sharing, mentoring, and career development, including merit-based STEM scholarship funding.
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CloudNOW Scholarships — Pilot Results and Plans for Scaling Impact

In 2017, we established the CloudNOW STEM Scholarship to bridge the economic divide, create social justice and directly impact diversity and inclusion in tech. We thank all of funders who responded with resounding support — Google, Intel and Facebook.

Two years later, the scholarships provided have supported the next generation of tech leaders —female, minority, underserved and counted out — and we are proud to report that the CloudNOW Scholars have assumed software engineering roles at Apple,, Pinterest and more. This is just the beginning of what we know will be long and successful careers for these students as they open doors for others and pay it forward.

Program Results and Students Served

Since the inception of the program in 2017, 20 students have been served, a year-over-year increase of 185 percent. Populations include women, African Americans, Latinos, and Asians (please note, we do not collect data on LGBTQ). All these students experienced severe economic disadvantages, including absolute poverty and homelessness.


Employment in technical positions secured at Apple, Pinterest, Doctors on Demand, Adobe and more. (in the U.S. all jobs offered a minimum $120K annual salary)

1. Holberton

For the 2017-2018 school year, four Holberton students were sponsored with scholarships.

  • All found full-time software engineering jobs upon graduation.
  • All came from underrepresented backgrounds:
    • a male African-American
    • a male Latino
    • a female African-American
    • a female Caucasian
  • After graduating with a bachelor of applied science specializing in health care administration, Olatope Agboola held multiple jobs but came to understand that software was her calling. She’s now employed as a software engineer for Doctor on Demand.
  • Previously studying computer science at Santa Rosa Junior College, Steven Garcia decided to drop out of SRJC to enroll in Holberton. He is now a software engineer at Pinterest.
  • Previously an account relationship manager at a small broker-dealer, Kristen Loyd was bored with her job and tired of not being able to pay her student debt. She discovered that software is what she wanted to do for a living. She joined Holberton School and is now a software engineer at Decathlon.
  • Max Johnson was bouncing from one low-paying job to another for about a decade. He enrolled in Holberton and had to sleep in his car, as he was short on cash. He is now a DevOps engineer at Pypestream.
  • All came from underrepresented backgrounds:
    • three female Latinas
    • two female African-Americans
    • a male African-American
    • two male Asians
    • two male non-Caucasians (mixed race and ethnicity)

These students have just begun their studies and will be looking for internships or jobs in approximately nine months.

2. Shanti Bhavan Children’s Project

Shanti Bhavan Children’s Project is a free non-profit residential school that provides education to children from families who earn less than $2 a day. For the 2017-2018 school year, three Shanti Bhavan students were sponsored with scholarships.

  • All came from absolute poverty in India (untouchable caste).
  • One graduated and accepted an engineering role at Adobe’s corporate headquarters.
  • Two are continuing with their university studies and on track for graduation with technical degrees with distinction.


Meet Papitha!

Papitha is our first graduate from the CloudNOW Scholarship program from Shanti Bhanvan Children’s project

Bachelor’s degree in computer applications
NOW: Content and Community Lead at Adobe in Bangalore

Our continuing Shanti Bhavan Scholars:

As a third-year student at Christ University in Bangalore, Rasiga is working to complete her degree in computers, mathematics and statistics. When she’s not at college, Rasiga lives with her mom and three sisters in a rural village in Tamil Nadu. Her father died of AIDS when she was young. Her mother and one of her sisters also have AIDS. When she is well enough to work, Rasiga’s mother earns a living as a tailor. Her older sister is married, and her two younger sisters are in 11th and 12th grade.

Rasiga loves coding, and would love to one day work for a tech company that would allow her to use her skills to create software that could be utilized to help poor communities. One of her main priorities upon getting a job will be to provide medical care for her mother and sister.

Tanuja is in her third and final year at Christ University in Bangalore. She plans to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in computer applications. Her family comes from a small village on the outskirts of Bangalore. Her father raises silkworms while her mother takes care of the home. Tanuja has one older sister and one younger brother.

She dreams of using her computer programming skills to spread awareness about the importance of education, particularly in communities like hers where many children do not graduate from high school.

Angel Mary
Angel Mary is in her second year at Christ University in Bangalore, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in computer applications. She is from Ooty in Tamil Nadu. Angel Mary’s parents divorced when she was young, and she is no longer in touch with her mother. Her father used to do maintenance work, but passed away this fall due to a massive heart attack. Angel Mary stays with her maternal aunt on breaks from school. Angel Mary has one younger sister, who is currently studying in a government school.

Angel Mary wants to work in game design, as this would allow her to be creative and utilize her passion for computing. Once she has graduated, she hopes to return to Shanti Bhavan frequently to teach younger students about computer science and programming.

CloudNOW’s Future Plans for Diversity and Inclusion

Given the success of the last two years, CloudNOW is ready to scale. We are seeking to expand the scholarship fund to $500,000 and serve approximately 100 students over the next 12 months, We also want to bring on-board new academic partners, including supporting those with disabilities.

We will source our funding from individual donations, corporate donations and grant funding. In addition to social responsibility, a major benefit to our corporate clients is the availability of our scholars for internships.

We hope that you will continue your support and help us as we work towards our goal of making tech a friendlier, more accessible place!

Warm regards,

P.S. — If you were unable to attend our seventh annual CloudNOW event, here is the link to Sheryl Sandberg’s keynote:

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