Redbubble helps #BridgetheTechGap in new partnership with Techtonica

Last October you may remember that we made a big announcement: Redbubble would begin investing strategically in our local markets to bring more equity into tech through a series of community partnerships. Our intent was and is to go deeper instead of broad, using our privilege to help stand with and for some of the most marginalized and underrepresented.

We are excited to announce our second partnership today with Techtonica.

Techtonica is a six-month, fully-sponsored apprenticeship program for primarily women and non-binary people of color of lower incomes. Techtonica was one of the first programs of its kind to include job placement and a living stipend for housing and childcare. Techtonica is one of only a few apprenticeships that do not require graduates to pay back fees upon placement. Our support will help cover the costs of one of their current apprentices in the current cohort which just launched in January.

In San Francisco, we are acutely aware of the increasing cost of living and the disproportionately adverse effects this has on low-income and often marginalized communities. This compounds a cycle of wealth inequality, not just in our city, but throughout many parts of the US.

We also believe wholeheartedly that the most beneficial and effective work in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion focuses on intersectionality. The intersections between race, class, gender, sexual orientation and ability can create multiple barriers to success and empowerment. It is through this shared value that we feel perfectly aligned to Techtonica’s mission.

“I am so excited to be working with Techtonica because it is programs like this that are defining the future of tech. It was very powerful to hear the current apprentices’ stories and learn about their compassionate, creative visions for what tech could be. I can’t wait to see how we can help them realize their dreams,”
-Savannah, Redbubble engineer
Michelle Glauser, engineer, creator of the #ilooklikeanengineer campaign and CEO and Founder of Techtonica. Photo: Techtonica.org

In considering our first partnership in San Francisco we met with many amazing organizations. When we met Michelle Glauser, the founder and CEO of Techtonica, we knew it felt right. Having seen the income disparities in San Francisco in her own early career, before and after becoming a software engineer, she was committed to making change.

While still in their early days, their impact has been remarkable. Techtonica’s second cohort of apprentices is well underway and many of their first cohort have accepted full-time employment at some of the Bay Area’s most innovative tech companies.

Meet the 2019 Techtonica Apprentices and hear their stories from their recent launch celebration. Photo: Techtonica.org
“Techtonica relies on sponsors to be able to provide training, equipment, stipends, and job placement to women and non-binary adults with low incomes — the people most underrepresented in tech and most in danger of displacement by tech. We’re grateful that Redbubble has officially recognized the value of diversity and making a positive social impact by becoming one of our sponsors and supporting our #BridgeTheTechGap cause…” — Michelle Glauser, Techtonica CEO
A group of our engineers and recruiters were honored to be at the launch last month hosted at the Indeed San Francisco offices. I was lucky enough to speak with TaLea, an alum of the first cohort, about their experience with the program. Photo: Techtonica.org
“One or our core values is accountability. As a scaling tech company we hold ourselves accountable to all of our communities. We believe in a new future that includes everyone and expands opportunities to people of all backgrounds. We are excited about the impact Techtonica and each of the apprentices will make.”
— Barry Newstead, Redbubble CEO

While we are extremely excited about being apart of the future for change, we are also committed to making an impact short term through our structured hiring practices and organizational commitments to creating balanced teams. We also believe that you cannot lift people up without creating a sense of belonging and are excited to announce our three year Belonging Strategy later this year.

We hope that through programs like Techtonica, more people will be able to see themselves belonging in tech. And we will continue to do our part in seeing a more equitable future.

Techtonica relies solely on individual and tech company sponsors so be sure to find out how you too can help: https://techtonica.org.