Google Cloud for Higher Education with Laurie White and Aaron Yeats


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On the podcast this week, our guests Laurie White and Aaron Yeats talk with Stephanie Wong and Kelci Mensah about higher education and how Google Cloud is helping students realize their potential. As a former educator, Laurie has seen the holes in tech education and, with the help of Google, is determined to aid faculty and students in expanding learning to include cloud education as well as the standard on prem curriculum. Aaron and Laurie work together toward this goal with programs like their Speaker Series.

Laurie’s approach involves supporting faculty as they design courses that incorporate cloud technologies. With the busy lives of students today, she recognizes that the best way to get the information into the hands of students is through regular coursework, not just through elective activities outside the regular classroom.

Aaron’s work with students and student organizations rounds out their support of higher education learning. He facilitates the creation of student clubs that use Cloud Skills Boost, a program in which students navigate full pathways as they learn the skills they need to create and manage cloud builds. Soon, Aaron will offer hack-a-thons that encourage students to attend weekend events to work together on passion projects outside of regular classwork.

Our guests talk more about the specifics of Google Cloud Higher Education Programs and the importance of incorporating certifications into the higher education learning process. Aaron talks about expanding the program and his hopes for reaching out to more schools and students and Laurie talks about the funding for students and how Google Cloud’s system of credits for students enables them to use real cloud tools without a credit card. Laurie and Aaron tell us fun stories about past student successes, conference interactions, and hack-a-thon projects that went well.

Laurie White

Laurie taught CS in higher ed for over 30 years where her biggest frustration was trying to keep the curriculum up with the field. She thought she was retiring seven years ago but got the call from Google to a job where she could help faculty around the world keep their curriculum up with cloud computing, so here she is.

Aaron Yeats

Aaron Yeats has been working in education outreach for two decades. His work in education has included Texas government education programs including public health, non-profit advocacy, and education.

Cool things of the week
  • How Wayfair is reaching MLOps excellence with Vertex AI blog
  • Hidden gems of Google BigQuery blog
  • Google Cloud Innovators site
  • Google Cloud and Apollo24|7: Building Clinical Decision Support System (CDSS) together blog
  • Google Cloud Higher Education Programs site
  • Google Cloud Speaker Series site
  • Google Cloud Skills Boost site
  • CSSI site
  • Tech Equity Collective site
  • GDSC site
What’s something cool you’re working on?

Steph has been working on an AlphaFold video. You can learn more here.

Kelci is working on developing a Neos tutorial for introductory Google Cloud developers to learn how to write HTTP functions in Python all within the Google Cloud environment and wrapping up her summer internship with Google!


Stephanie Wong and Kelci Mensah

610 episodes