UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Growing up in Philadelphia, Noel Claudio never thought that it was possible to work for a big social media tech company unless he lived in California or New York.
But thanks to his experiences at Penn State's College of Information Sciences and Technology and remote work opportunities that arose during the pandemic, Claudio recently landed his dream job working virtually in Strategy and Operations for Twitter’s Platform Engineering Team.
“It’s pretty cool knowing that I was once one of Twitter’s users in its earliest days when I was a student at Penn State a decade ago, and now I’m on the other side helping others to enjoy the platform moving forward,” he said.
According to Claudio, when Twitter had the opportunity to interview candidates virtually during the pandemic, the company’s talent pool was significantly expanded to communities across the globe — including Philadelphia — giving him the opportunity to pursue his dream job without relocating. Additionally, he said, the expanded talent pool has helped tech companies advance diversity and inclusion efforts, something that Claudio is passionate about as a Latino and first-generation college graduate.
“I hope that within the tech industry we continue to hire more people of color and from other underrepresented backgrounds,” he said. “It’s important for companies to build products with the thought of being applicable for everyone, and not just (based on) the color of their skin. You want to have people that come in with different experiences from different places around the world.”
Claudio is a strong advocate for Latinx workers in tech. He serves on the board for the Philadelphia chapter of the Association of Latino Professionals for America, through which he has organized events to bring awareness to careers in consulting and technology and has mentored underrepresented students who aspire to work in the industry. He was recently recognized on the 2021 AL DIA News Media 40 Under Forty list, highlighting the most diverse and impactful young professionals across the Philadelphia region.