Meet Shameeka Emanuel, Newest Piper Board Member
Tell us a little about yourself...
I am a Wife, a Mother, and a Techie!
I started my journey at Howard University where I received my Bachelor's Degree in Systems and Computer Science. I later went on to get my Master’s Degree from North Carolina State University in Computer Engineering.
I am currently a Diversity STEM Strategist at Google tasked with reconsidering the relationship between industry and education to expand capacity in computing education, but I am primarily focused on Google's Code Next program.
Prior to joining Google, I was a Senior Product Manager at Amazon where I was able to help launch the Amazon Future Engineer Program. Before joining Amazon, I worked at Intel Corporation where I held a variety of positions which included being a Component Design Engineer for the Xeon Server Family. I am also proud to serve as Co-Chair for the Birds of a Feather committee for the 2022 ACM Richard Tapia Celebration of Diversity in Computing Conference.
“Don’t let anyone rob you of your imagination, your creativity, or your curiosity. It’s your place in the world; it’s your life. Go on and do all you can with it, and make it the life you want to live.”
– Mae Jemison, American Engineer, Physician, and Astronaut
What is your role at Google?
My job at Google is to find and support the next generation of Black, Latino and Indigenous leaders with a passion for computer science (CS). As a Black woman, this role has a deep meaning for me. In fact, it’s the job I’ve always dreamed of — one that bridges my passion for computer science and equity.
What interested you in a technology career?
I grew up as a cheerleader and band nerd who was eligible for free lunch — I knew technology would be my key to moving to another economic class. I was also drawn to tech because math and science are objective subjects rooted in proof: you’re either right, wrong or innovating.
Why did you join the Piper Board?
In his book Lifelong Kindergarten, Mitch Resnick distills a creative, collaborative approach to learning down to four elements: passion, projects, peers, play. I believe these elements are the key to motivating young people to consider a career in STEM. Piper was founded in 2014 with a simple vision: to create experiences around learning with technology that are hands-on, effective, and fun. Can you see the synergy here? I am so excited to join this incredible group of lifelong learners! Here is to broadening exposure and access around the globe!
Since you work closely with Educators in your role, do you have any tips on how to keep students engaged in the classroom?
I am so humbled to be welcomed into the Education Community! Here are some tips I have heard from Educators:
- ‘Just Say No’ to deficit mindsets: Do away with elements that tend to be barriers for growth, creativity, and agency. Focus on building and practicing a growth mindset.
- Have students choose their own adventure: If possible, provide students with lesson plans including instructional goals and outcome expectations, but empower students to take charge of their own learning.
- Create communal identity: Try to find mentors and/or teachers that look like the students they are working with, or come from similar backgrounds.
- Build social capital: In a practical sense, social capital allows an individual to leverage relationships for resources (e.g., information about internships and jobs or support through a challenging college course). Encourage your students to build social capital with their peers, instructors, and mentors, so that they can successfully navigate their education and career pathways beyond the current learning environment.
Here at Piper we are so appreciative and excited to work with Shameeka who embodies the core Piper qualities while wrapping it in fun, laughter and energy.