There are six pillars that uphold the culture of IQ Inc. And it is one of those pillars, “We Care about the growth and development of our people, our clients, and our community”, that inspired fellow Software Engineer, Andrew Eagle, to create a “Social Good” Committee in July of 2019. #SocialGoodatIQInc.
It’s not as formal as it sounds! The initiative was started because Andrew wanted to make more of an impact on the world around him… wanted to make it better. He figured that IQ, and at least some of his fellow employees, would buy into this idea of organized social impact.
The response was simply amazing. Dozens of IQ employees participated in a survey identifying areas of social impact that were most important to them. After compiling the data, a few focus groups emerged: STEM and software outreach to women and girls, charitable action, and environmental justice.
Here are just a few of the causes in which IQ Inc. team members volunteer their free-time!
- Ronald McDonald House
- Coding for Middle School girls SWE++
- Blood Drive – January 2020, organized by IQ Inc., currently opening it up to office neighbors to see if more participation from other employees who would like to donate and join!
- Giving Tree & Family Sponsor for Holidays – IQ Inc. employees will donate goods to families in need.
- RedChair Mentorship – Barb, IQ Inc.’s CEO, is a mentor
*Social Good Goals in the future would focus on environmental causes, helping marginalized communities, and more!
With these focused “social good” groups in mind, IQ formed a Slack Channel, available to all IQ employees, at the IQ Inc. HQ office, and all the client sites so that any and all IQ employees interested in contributing would have a platform to do so. Teams self-organized to tackle the issues the group found important. And then it was off to the races!! Literally, IQ employees participated in a pair of medical research fundraising fun-runs as two of the earliest actions.
Another team spun up to gather volunteers for an exciting new program called Coding for Middle School Girls. This event, organized by University of Pittsburgh Society of Women Engineers (SWE++), provided middle school girls with an experience in coding, and also exposed them to programming and problem solving. Approximately 30 middle school girls came together for weekly classes. The program ran from September 8th to November 10th and on November 16th the girls invited friends to participate in a larger event called Code Day.
Another initiative involved the Ronald McDonald House. A group of Social Good members, dubbing themselves the “Smokin’ Hot Chefs”, traveled to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh to prepare a savory pumpkin chili and cornbread side. The Smokin’ Hot Chefs are planning to make this a quarterly effort, bringing new chefs and delicious recipes to the residents of the Ronald McDonald House every few months!
Two more projects are currently being planned. We will sponsor a family for the 2019 holiday season to help provide food and toys to a family in need. Additionally, a team member gauged interest, reached out to other companies that share the office building with IQ, and is organizing a building-wide blood drive scheduled for early 2020.
These events are only the beginning. New opportunities are being found and targeted as IQ employees strive to make an impact to help others.