Oh my Google!

For the last couple days we’ve focused heavily on the side of entrepreneurship and the common good; we’ve talked with social action leaders, met with two different professors from two different universities, conversed with union organizers, and learned what it really means to be an entrepreneur for good – today, however, focused on the Silicon Valley side.

What better way to get the real Silicon Valley experience than to visit Google? Under the wing of Craig, Charles, and Dilan (all Luther Alums) we got to venture about the Google campus as guests for the day. Besides getting the tour which included the Android sculpture, the visitor center (beta), a dinosaur, and the cafeteria with our own reserved table, we got to meet and talk to various Googlers about their experiences with one of the largest tech companies in the world. Overall, the Googlers made it sound really appealing to work at their companies. Aside from all the more popular perks that come with the job, Google has an internal program where they provide for volunteerism and donating. Not only do you get to work for a company that seems to honestly care about their employees, but you get to feel good about your contributions as well.

Our day was topped off with a trip to YouTube. YouTube HQ is everything you would expect from YouTube: TVs playing random internet videos, meme and video game themed conference rooms, and a giant slide in the middle of their work area. As far as actual course work was concerned, we were able to meet with some legal reps for Google and put them on the spot about Google’s commitment to not being evil (which is essentially Google’s mantra – “Don’t be evil”). Following the meeting, we were treated to a short tour of the building by one of YouTube’s administrators. If Google looked like a fun place to work, YouTube looked like a playground. While our professors tried their hardest to ask questions about and guide conversation toward community action, today seemed to be more of one dedicated to experiencing the life of a techie in Silicon Valley.

These bikes are readily available for Google employees to easily move around campus!