What if there were a simple way for employers to fill vacancies in IT positions? Or what if there were a way for those who generally lack educational opportunities to learn and apply IT skills? With Creating IT Futures, the charitable foundation of IT industry organization CompTIA, there is a way. Creating IT Futures saw a need and filled it by partnering up with another non-profit organization, Per Scholas, to launch IT-Ready.
IT-Ready is an excellent fit for aspiring IT pros who have ambition but lack training. Workers who are underemployed or unemployed can take advantage of this “free education, training and career placement program,” an eight-week tech gauntlet that helps participants earn CompTIA's A+ certification and places them in a paid apprenticeship with companies such as Medica, Medtronic and HealthPartners. Within four months of graduating, the majority of students are employed in a paid, full-time IT position. Sounds like a fairy tale? Think again.
IT-Ready helps “people living in or who are at-risk for poverty, displaced workers, women and minorities, veterans, spouses, and caretakers” find success in sustaining careers. Creating IT Futures helps those individuals gain the necessary skills for a successful IT career and connects successful students to employers. Providing both technical and professional skills, IT-Ready helps students learn everything from troubleshooting a malfunctioning PC, to preparing for an employment interview.
IT-Ready isn’t just for those who are unemployed or who can’t find work. In 30 years of full-time employment, Cheryl Morell’s pay raises hardly left the beginner’s position, and it was nearly impossible to move up in the company she worked for. Because of her successful completion of IT-Ready, however, Morell is not only being paid more, but now has many opportunities to advance in her career.
For veterans, the transition from the military to various work fields at home can be difficult. Luckily, it doesn’t matter what occupational background or life experience an individual has — any veteran interested in gaining the skills to enter the IT industry will find an open door at IT-Ready.
IT-Ready can help even those who have become convinced their employment situation is hopeless. A story posted on the foundation's website tells about 36-year-old vet Tim Burford, who had an unfinished bachelor’s degree and floated from job to job. Thanks to completing IT-Ready, Burford has now earned 14 certifications and holds a job with an income that can support a family.
Creating IT Futures gives struggling workers a chance to escape dead-end career paths, and helps employers find connect with a new supply of much-needed tech-savvy professionals.