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White House doubles TechHire communities nationwide to meet employer demand in high-paying careers

SALT LAKE CITY, UT — TechHire Utah, an innovative job-training program to empower Utah residents with skills needed to be competitive in high-tech jobs, today celebrates the one-year anniversary of the launch of the TechHire initiative as the White House announces new steps to further develop the tech skills of America’s workforce.

According to the White House today, developing the tech skills of our workforce is important for our economic future and is a critical need for employers. Over half a million of today’s open jobs are in technology fields like software development and cybersecurity – many of which did not even exist a decade ago. The average salary in a job that requires technology skills is 50 percent more than the average private-sector job. TechHire Utah was one of the initial cities recognized last year when President Barack Obama issued a call to action for communities across the country to join the movement and create TechHire partnerships. Key to the work is employers engaging in the communities to articulate the critical needs, and then to provide fast-track training that can equip workers for fields needing tech skills. 

"Helping our workforce 'skill-up' will drive the ingenuity and creativity needed to fuel innovation and economic development in Utah and throughout the country," said Jamai Blivin, president and CEO of Innovate+Educate, which is planning to launch a new TechHire Community of Progress that will work with all interested employers in TechHire communities to share competency-based models and help scale up employer participation. "Working with employers and job creators to develop and scale new pathways to high-paying and rewarding IT jobs will effectively place skilled talent into positions of success in Utah, and we’re already seeing positive progress in this area.” 

Utah is one of the nation’s fastest growing tech regions with more than 5,000 technology companies experiencing serious shortages for skilled talent. To help build a new tech talent pipeline in the state, TechHire Utah has teamed up with Innovate+EducateUtah Technology CouncilUtah Cluster Acceleration Partnership (UCAP), Utah Valley University (UVU), Salt Lake Community College (SLCC), Pluralsight, and the Mayor’s Office to accelerate this training and hiring model to position Utah as a national leader in addressing the workforce talent shortage. 

Today’s announcement by the White House builds on the progress of expanding TechHire Communities, strengthening and extending on-the-job training for international STEM graduates of U.S. universities, further progressing the president's Nation of Makers Initiative, and advancing career and technical education. The president is planning to speak further on the success of TechHire this Friday when he travels to Austin, Texas for South by Southwest. 

TechHire officially launched in 2015 with 21 communities and more than 300 employers committed to providing Americans with the accelerated, non-traditional technical training they need to obtain better jobs and achieve better futures. The 15 new TechHire Communities added today include Atlanta, Ga., Austin, Texas, Burlington, Vt., Riverside, Calif.; Flint, Mich.; State of Hawaii, Indianapolis, Ind.; Jackson, Miss.; Milwaukee, Wisc.; Raleigh, N.C.; Jackson, Tenn.; Seattle, Wash.; Tallahassee, Fla.; Commonwealth of Virginia; and Miami, Fla. The addition of these new communities now doubles the number of TechHire communities nationally from 21 to more than 40. 

TechHire Utah leverages real-time labor market information from Burning Glass Technologies and the State of Utah to identify the most in-demand tech jobs and programming languages to meet employer needs. To expand access to fast-track training, UVU and SLCC are beginning to offer low cost “boot camp” courses with blended online Pluralsight curricula, real-world projects, mentoring, and job placement assistance. Training courses are modularized with eight-week evening/weekend options to expand access to veterans, women, second-career adults and non-traditional students. TechHire Utah also is looking to fast-track women and veterans in high-paying technology careers for economic equity and to build a diverse talent pipeline as well as expand outreach and job placements by working with faith-based organizations to create strong employer connections, supplemental skills training, and other supportive services. 

This week TechHire Utah is set to participate in SheTech Explorer Day on Friday (March 11) at UVU featuring about 1,000 high school girls receiving free coding curricula with the goal to engage more girls in technology fields. Next month, TechHire Utah will be at the Utah Governor’s Economic Summit on April 14-15 announcing multi-sector strategies for scaling accelerated job training state-wide to grow a skilled workforce to support Utah’s economic future. 


About TechHire Utah

TechHire Utah is helping improve skills-based hiring, training and credentials for Utah job seekers while benefiting local employers and strengthening local communities. For more information, visit www.techhireutah.org

About Innovate+Educate

Innovate+Educate (I+E) is a national, non-profit organization implementing evidence-based, employer-led strategies to drive competency-based training and hiring for in-demand jobs. I+E is led by a Board of Directors from top industry across 35 states. For more information, visit www.innovate-educate.org

Editorial Contact

Noah Garrett, NGC Communications on behalf of TechHire Utah: noah@thinkngc.com