Providence Public Library to Host Grow With Google

May 10, 2019

Google Events Aim to Create Skilled Workforce of the Future in Rhode Island

Google will be at Providence Public Library (PPL) (and Newport Public Library) with its Grow with Google Economic Opportunity Initiative events Wednesday, May 29 and Friday, May 31, respectively.  The PPL event will take place from 10 am to 5 pm (225 Washington Street Providence).

Four workshops will be offered along with all-day one-on-one appointments with Googlers.  The workshops are: Discover Digital Resources to Empower Your Community (10-11am), Reach Customers Online with Google (12-1pm), Get Your Business Online (2-3pm) and Power Your Job Search with Google Tools (4-5pm).  The workshops are free and participants should register at (ideally ahead of time but registration is available on-site).

“Rhode Island has a long history as a center for industry and higher education. By bringing the ‘Grow with Google’ tour to the state, we are building upon the work that local libraries have already begun to develop a skilled workforce that can meet the needs of Rhode Island’s growing economy,” said Erica Swanson, Google’s Head of Community Engagement. In recognition that libraries are increasingly centers for digital skills learning, Grow with Google plans to visit libraries in every state, partnering with them to deliver digital skills trainings directly to job seekers and small businesses in their community. We will also train library staff and nonprofit leaders on a range of Grow with Google’s free tools and curriculum they can use on a daily basis.

Google is partnering with community organizations like the Center for Women and Enterprise – Rhode Island, Discover Newport, Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce, Newport Public Library, Providence Public Library, Rhode Island Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Women’s Resource Center and Workforce Partnership of Greater Rhode Island. Following the Grow with Google event, Google will explore ongoing partnership opportunities with area organizations to help with job training and developing digital skills. Google launched Grow with Google in October of 2017. The American initiative draws on Google’s 20-year history of building products, platforms, and services that help people and businesses grow. Through this initiative, Google aims to help everyone across America – those who make up the workforce of today and those who will drive the workforce of tomorrow – access the best of Google’s training and tools to grow their skills, careers, and businesses.

“Providence Public Library (PPL) is excited to partner with Google to bring “Grow with Google” to Providence,” said Jack Martin, Providence Public Library Executive Director. “Strong digital skills are critical in this high-tech age and specifically for those seeking economic advancement. PPL is continually focused on offering high-impact technology education and workforce development to members of our community, as well as broad opportunities to bridge the digital divide.”

Specifically, Grow with Google aims to help address the skills gap by preparing Americans for middle-skill jobs, positions that require some skills but not four-year degrees. According to the National Middle Skills Initiative, middle-skills jobs account to 52% of the Rhode Island labor force. A recent study by Burning Glass and Capital One found that more than 8 in 10 middle-skill jobs (82%) require digital skills. Overall, middle-skill jobs average $20 per hour.

In their 2017 Economic Impact Report, Google announced that 3,400 businesses in Rhode Island generated $356 million in economic activity by using Google’s search and advertising tools. The full report details Google’s economic impact state-by-state, and features the stories of businesses fueling that growth, creating job opportunities, and transforming their communities.

According to the American Library Association, nearly three-quarters of public libraries assist their patrons with job applications and interviewing skills, 90% help their patrons learn basic digital skills, and just under half provide access and assistance to entrepreneurs looking to start a business of their own. To learn more about the free event and to register, visit Space will be limited; so please register in advance.