Larry Schwartz, Chairman & CEO of Seaborn Networks, a leading developer-owner-operator of submarine fiber optic cable systems, aims to develop an initiative locally in his Boston and North Shore area community to encourage students to consider a career within the subsea industry.
Larry is a strong believer in grassroots initiatives, and his community is one in which he feels Seaborn can make a real difference. He has strong ties to the area, having grown up close by and having raised his five children there. Larry has built and maintains strong relationships with many of the local schools and universities – whether it was through introducing a class of kindergarteners to cable-ships, middle schoolers to autonomous underwater vehicles, or high schoolers to the concept of submarine cables. In addition, recently, several of his children have attended and graduated from New England-based universities.
When two of Larry’s children began discussing their interest in pursuing STEM careers, he observed the difficulty they had in finding quality career advice and support. The lack of available and relevant internships was also evident. Academic advice often failed to communicate the wide range of possibilities that currently exist for talented young professionals. This, in turn, motivated Larry to take a look at the subsea industry to see how Seaborn might be able to help and at the same time do something that would be beneficial for Seaborn and the industry as a whole.
“As an industry, I’m conscious we are aging-out,” said Larry. “Walking around industry events, you see fewer and fewer young faces. That’s not news to those of us working within the subsea sector. We’re all aware of this aging environment, but it has been a struggle so far to attract a lot of young and diverse talent. At Seaborn, we are looking to do something about that at a grassroots level.”
Few high school and college students are even aware that the submarine cable sector exists, let alone how this critical global communications infrastructure is installed and maintained.
At Seaborn, the motivation is twofold. The goal is to create a pipeline to hire a new generation of smart, motivated, young and locally-based employees by promoting internships and providing career advice and mentoring programs. In addition, Seaborn looks to educate and connect with a more youthful mindset. It’s a win-win: the industry would also benefit from the enthusiasm, creativity and diversity brought about by an influx of young professionals.
Seaborn is committed to this initiative – one student, one classroom, and one school at a time. They believe that by reaching out to that very core base of young men and women at the most decisive moment of their lives, they can introduce them to a whole new variant for STEM-based careers, namely the subsea industry.