WAZ: Project Glimmer and GenHERation
Women at Zynga (WAZ) is an employee-led community empowering women in gaming by creating more opportunities for them to succeed and grow as leaders in the industry. Founded in 2010, our mission is to foster an inclusive work environment while pushing to correct the gender imbalance that currently exists in gaming.
Summer is one of our busiest seasons for WAZ, typically hosting multiple STEAM Outreach events during this time in addition to our internal programming. This summer, we partnered with two non-profit organizations, Project Glimmer and GenHERation. Project Glimmer works to inspire confidence, develop professional skills, and instill a sense of belonging in foster youth and historically underserved teenagers; similarly, GenHERation connects young women from high school and college to tech companies, providing opportunities to network and explore a variety of careers options.
Through these partnerships, WAZ members connected with over 110 students, offering career advice and sharing their unique journeys into gaming. Together with Project Glimmer, WAZ hosted a Resume review and Networking/LinkedIn Tips session led by Zynga’s fantastic recruiting team and volunteers; these sessions were followed by an intimate panel with WAZ leaders from Game Dev, Legal, and People Ops teams who shared more about their individual roles and pathways to these roles.
As part of the GenHERation Discovery Days programming, WAZ members spoke on a panel (with peers from NASA, Google, Facebook and Amazon Web Services), held 1:1 mock interviews and hosted a Design-A-Game activity, which saw WAZ members from the US, Canada, and the UK guiding groups of students through paper prototyping a game to help find a mentor/mentee. Afterwards, each group practiced presentation skills by sharing their prototypes with the entire audience, and many students stated the WAZ Design-A-Game activity was one of their favorite sessions during the Discovery Days programming!
As we wrap up our summer of STEAM Outreach and prepare for Fall events, we at WAZ are grateful to our volunteers who dedicate their time and efforts in giving back to our communities. Through their generosity we are able to contribute to an inclusive environment and partner with organizations like Project Glimmer and GenHERation to not only engage with but also provide opportunities for the future generation of game developers.