Why IT-oLogy in the First Place: Matching Skills to Jobs


A Collaborative Plan for Apprenticeships

By: Lonnie Emard, IT-oLogy President

A great example of what can happen when multiple organizations get together to focus on an objective or an outcome and creative, functional ideas get implemented. In South Carolina, Apprenticeship Carolina, an organization that is part of the SC Technical College System has made such tremendous strides that the US Department of Labor is noticing. The organization, led by Brad Neese, is viewed as a model for apprenticeship expansion and for collaboration among state agencies engaged in workforce development.

As this program has evolved over the years, it has served 11,367 apprentices across seven different industry and professional groups. One of those is Information Technology. Now this audience knows that when we say IT, we don’t just mean the industry of IT, we mean the profession of IT that runs across truly every business and industry vertical. In fact, several of the IT-oLogy partners in South Carolina participate in the Apprenticeship Carolina program which provides a framework for companies to successfully implement successful apprenticeship programs. In fact, BlueCross BlueShield SC was recognized last year as having one of the largest IT apprenticeship programs in the country.

So where do you come in?

To increase this successful collaboration, IT-oLogy is working with Apprenticeship Carolina, as well as the United State Department of Labor to expand these programs and meet our labor demands with highly effective, proven programs that contain incentives for employers. Since our mission is to bring business partners together with economic and workforce efforts that include higher education partners and other IT education providers, we are delivering an invite to each and every company out there that hires IT professionals.

We want to help coordinate in an efficient and effective manner the repeatable process of implementing these types of programs in small, medium and large companies. We recently surveyed many of our partners to let you tell us about your hiring needs. I want to personally use this newsletter article to be my “call to action” for you to consider the apprenticeship program that we will be make available to you. Even if you already do them, please let us know and we can aggregate the scope and scale of this effort.

I am asking you as a representative of your company to do whatever it takes, speak to the right people and make a concerted effort to try this process. As I mentioned earlier, we will be working with the DOL and they have made $100 million of grant money available across the US to grow apprenticeships. Our ability to bring the source of jobs (companies like yours) to the table will cause great things to happen.

Let me close with a request that you email me with your comments, your potential interest and hopefully your commitments at [email protected]. Oh, and don’t forget to follow me @lonnieemard on Twitter.

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