Oct 25, 2013 09:45AM ● Published by Style
Photo by Dante Fontana, © Style Media Group
With 6,000 local employees, Intel is Folsom’s largest private employer—
a title that comes with a self-imposed responsibility to give back to the community that the company and its workforce call home.
Responsibility is one thing, but action is another. A full 50 percent, or 3,000, of Intel’s local employees volunteer their time and talent to local schools and nonprofits. Compare that to the national average, where just 29 percent of employed adults volunteer. It’s little wonder that “Intel Involved,” was ranked the “#1 Corporate Volunteer Program” in the region by the Sacramento Business Journal. “Our employees live in these communities and many of them benefit from the services local nonprofits provide,” says Intel’s California Communications Manager, Christina Chin. “Couple that with a corporate commitment to doing what’s right for people and the planet, and the result is a holistic culture of giving. It’s in our DNA.”
Within that DNA is a desire for so-called “skills-based” volunteering. It’s not just about donating hours, but expertise to supplement the work nonprofits are doing, and even help them do it better. As a tech company, Intel has an immense suite of skill sets that benefit local nonprofits with free MBA consulting, business plan development, innovation and teaching.
One of the local volunteers who has become an Intel Champion (a.k.a.: community service rock star) is Folsom resident Marne Dunn. Her passion for helping women acquire computer skills even led the company to create a new job position—digital empowerment program manager—just for her.
“I’m so proud of the work Intel does in the community and grateful to have the opportunity to volunteer,” says Dunn. “It helps me stay connected to the community, it benefits real lives, and it teaches in ways that help me be a better, stronger employee.”
For reasons needing no explanation, much of the focus on Intel’s involvement focuses on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education. With that said, employees are encouraged to follow where their passion leads them. That call resounded loudest in 2008 when Intel’s former CEO celebrated the company’s 40th anniversary by calling on employees to donate at least one million hours worldwide—a goal that was met and exceeded, and new records are set every year.
To that point, while people often look to Intel as a corporation to support their causes through grants or donations, the company offers matching funds to support employee volunteer hours. In 2012, Intel’s California employees volunteered more than 300,000 hours, generating more than $2.5 million in matching grants for the organizations they supported. Therefore, the best bet to get Intel involved in an organization is to find a local employee who’s willing to be your champion. “Through the matching program, employees can raise up to $15,000 for their local school or $10,000 for a nonprofit,” Chin says. “They often recruit their coworkers to get involved and help reach those levels. It’s rewarding for them, it helps the nonprofit immensely, and ultimately, it enriches the lives of everyone involved.”
For more information, visit intel.com/content/www/us/en/corporate-responsibility/community-involvement.html.