General Motors' Cruise Partners With Humanmade for Job Training

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【Summary】Autonomous companies, like General Motors’ Cruise, don’t have the best record with the community. Cruise is looking to change that with a partnership with not-for-profit Humanmade.

Original Vineeth Joel Patel    Aug 19, 2019 10:20 AM PT
General Motors' Cruise Partners With Humanmade for Job Training

The move to autonomous vehicles hasn't exactly been good for the automotive industry or the people in areas where the boom has taken over. San Francisco is a great example of this. The city is home to some of the most brilliant minds behind self-driving technology, but increased house prices and other factors have made it almost impossible for those not in the tech industry to live there. 

To help bolster its image with the community and bridge the divide between major tech companies and regular people, General Motors' Cruise is partnering with Humanmade, a not-for-profit organization.

Putting The Community First
As Digital Trends reports, the partnership between Cruise and Humanmade, which is an organization that looks to give people that work with their hands more opportunities to earn a living, runs deeper than just autonomous technology.
"We see this divide that's apparent between the tech sector, and those that aren't really benefiting from it," Robert Grant, Cruise vice president of global government affairs, told the outlet.
Humanmade is all about helping people find jobs. Individuals that use their hands, like artists or fabricators, can get access to tools and support services that might not be available to them otherwise, claims the outlet. Cruise has been a supporter of Humanmade for quite some time. The autonomous company apparently provided seed funding and even provided input on the not-for-profit organization's training curriculum.
"It's really amazing to have the support of companies like Cruise," said Ryan Spurlock, founder and executive director of Humanmade. While it's easy to become jaded by the partnership, like how Cruise could pluck employees from Humanmade, they claim that's not the case.
"This isn't really about benefiting Cruise. It's about being part of the community," said Grant. "It's about winning the trust race."

Is It Enough To Earn Trust?
Trust is something autonomous companies could use a lot more of. Surveys and recent reports all claim that drivers simply don't trust autonomous vehicles . If they don't trust autonomous cars, they probably don't trust the companies or individuals that are making them. 

Since Cruise tests its autonomous cars in San Francisco, partnering with a local not-for-profit organization to better the community will certainly earn it some brownie points. Instead of being another cog in the machine, Cruise might be seen in a little better light. Especially as the company's robot taxis are taking a break .
What kind of training will Handmade offer? According to Spurlock, the program would provide participants on things like CNC machining and 3D printing. Spurlock, as the outlet states, believes the tech industry needs more individuals that are skilled in hardware instead of software. And Cruise's partnership with Handmade may give the company access to a new crop of employees.

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