After canceling a town hall meeting intended to address the fallout from an anti-diversity memo, Google CEO Sundar Pichai emphasized the importance of women in tech jobs while speaking at a coding event for girls at the company’s campus.
“I want you to know there’s a place for you in this industry,” Pichai told a crowd of young women on Thursday, according to the Verge. “There’s a place for you at Google. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. You belong here and we need you.”
Pichai was speaking at the Technovation awards that honored teams of young women coders from all over the world. The months-long competition involved teams of girls developing apps to solve issues in their communities.
“At Google, we are very committed to building products for everyone in the world, and I think to do that well we really need to have people internally who represent the world in totality,” he said. “So it’s really important that more women and girls have the opportunity to participate in technology, to learn how to code, create, and innovate.”