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Per Scholas Launches Indiana Tech Skills Training Program

03/22/2023 8:40 AM | Anonymous

by Glenn Keller and Theron Wilson

Women & Hi Tech's writing lead Glenn Keller had the chance to correspond with Theron Wilson, Per Scholas Indianapolis Managing Director, to learn more about a new tech skills training program launching in Indianapolis. 

What should the Central Indiana area expect to see once you are running at full capacity?

Per Scholas is so proud to have launched our proven technology skills training right here in Indianapolis – a growing tech hub in America’s heartland. Our inaugural cohort begins on March 13, where 20 local learners will train on the ins and outs of IT Support. In just 12 weeks, they’ll graduate and be ready to make a difference day one on the job at area businesses.

Per Scholas Indianapolis will offer two additional IT Support training cohorts this year – in June and October. I’m thrilled that we’re on track to train 60 future technologists here in Indianapolis in 2023. Once we’re at full capacity and offering additional training opportunities, Central Indiana can expect to see a significant increase in the number of diverse individuals who are trained and connected to high-growth careers in technology. This will help to fill the growing demand for tech talent in the region, while also providing opportunities for individuals who might not otherwise have access to these jobs.

How will you ensure that the message about this program gets to those who most need it?

The intention around building our footprint of awareness of Per Scholas Indianapolis is to ensure we connect and build supportive partnerships with community organizations that are in need of pathways to employment with sustainable and thriving wages. Furthermore, speaking to developing this unique IT talent pool, we want to build relationships with workforce ecosystems, such as EmployIndy, also leaders in economic development such as Techpoint and Ascend Indiana with Central Indiana Corporate Partnership. It’s through a broad network that will enable Per Scholas Indianapolis to be exposed to the appropriate audience that will benefit the most from.

You are serving notice that acceptance is highly competitive.  What are some of the criteria you look at?

At Per Scholas Indianapolis, we’re looking to enroll individuals who are motivated, committed, and have a strong interest in technology. We also consider factors such as educational background, work experience, and personal circumstances when evaluating candidates. There are minimal eligibility requirements to apply to Per Scholas: an individual must be 18 years or older, have a high school diploma or GED, and be authorized to work in the United States. Click here to learn more!

What sort of help do you need from the community?

Goodwill of Central and Southern Indiana has been an incredible partner, and we are thrilled to offer our training from their headquarters at 1635 W. Michigan Street. At the moment, we’re looking to our community for two things – first to spread the word about our tuition-free training and encourage potential learners to apply. The second is to consider hiring Per Scholas Indianapolis-trained talent for their IT Support needs later this summer and going forward.

How can people get involved in the mission?

People can get involved in the mission of Per Scholas by donating, volunteering, spreading the word about our training, and hiring our graduates! Those interested in learning more and getting involved can contact me at twilson@perscholas.org! I’m always looking to connect with members of our dynamic Indianapolis community.

How do you ensure that you are recruiting from a diverse population?

Achieving diversity in the tech workforce is part of our mission and embedded in our DNA here at Per Scholas. To ensure we are recruiting diverse candidates, I feel that there needs to be specific efforts to engage with partners who serve and have access to diverse populations. Partnerships that support the advancement of minority populations will allow exposure to talent development and employment opportunities they may not otherwise have access to. Furthermore, as we continue to grow our staff here in the Indianapolis market, we want to ensure our staff represents the community we want to serve. 

At capacity, how many people do you expect to graduate each year?

In 2023, Per Scholas Indianapolis aims to graduate at least 60 technologists in our IT Support curriculum. Next year, we aim to graduate 90 technologists within in-person and remote cohort opportunities. Overall, by the beginning of 2028, Per Scholas Indianapolis anticipates to have graduated 500 technologists, launching 500 careers in technology in our local economy.

Welcome to Indianapolis, Per Scholas! To learn more about this training program visit https://perscholas.org/locations/indianapolis/

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