As one of the world’s leading tech companies, the challenge for Microsoft isn’t hiring talent—it’s hiring the right talent. In an industry that has historically lacked diversity, Microsoft has been a major proponent that diverse talent fuels innovation and productivity. Determined to tap into an alternative source of talent beyond traditional university recruitment, Microsoft looked to Year Up to access a pipeline of skilled, trainable talent and support their commitment to diverse hiring practices.  

It’s incredibly rewarding for me personally to see these young adults thrive under our mentorship and support at Microsoft. I look forward to continuing to grow this program in the future and to continue to give back to our local communities.”

Deborah de Hallé
Senior Engineering Manager, Microsoft (Yammer)

In 2008, Microsoft began by hosting four IT interns, and the value in the partnership as a scalable solution quickly became clear. Microsoft had found access to the diverse talent they were looking for, and Year Up interns were soon supporting more than ten functional teams across the company in Information Technology, Business Operations, Software Development, and more. Through the partnership, Microsoft also saw additional benefits to the organization in areas such as employee engagement. Today, Year Up plays a significant role in Microsoft’s pipeline of entry-level talent and organizational culture. Since the partnership began, they have hosted more than 390 interns and hired more than 140 graduates.

The partnership with Year Up has not only supplied Microsofwith a strong pipeline of motivated, entry-level talent that supports their ongoing commitment to recruiting and retaining Opportunity Youth, but it has also enabled them to make their vision of a more diverse tech industry a reality. 

“Now I feel like a sprout in the ground. I’m ready to grow, and I’m getting the sunlight I need to do so. At Microsoft, I’m not just in the system, subject to movements beyond my control; I’m part of the system, contributing to the greater environment of change. I’m proud to represent talented Opportunity Youth and Microsoft’s commitment to recruiting and retaining diverse talent.

Jameela Roland
Year Up Intern at Microsoft, 2017
Microsoft Employee, 2017-Present   


   390+               140+

Interns Hosted                 Graduates Hired


Microsoft enables digital transformation for the era of an intelligent cloud and an intelligent edge. Its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.  

Published October 2014/Updated March 2019
Written by Year Up