Tech Support News & Job Hiring Update 2015: President Obama Launches High-Tech Jobs Initiative
President Barack Obama on Monday launched a new initiative that asks employers, educational institutions and local governments to better prepare Americans for jobs in the high-tech industry, the Associated Press reported.
The effort tackles the fact that wages in that field have remained stagnant despite the overall uptick in the U.S. economy, the news service noted. Obama said the United States needed to keep up with "a constantly changing global economy" as he announced the initiative, dubbed "TechHire," at a gathering of the National League of Cities.
"If we're not producing enough tech workers, over time that's going to threaten our leadership in global innovation, which is the bread and butter of the 21st century economy," the president warned.
The initiative includes $100 million in funds "to train and connect more workers to a good job in technology and other in-demand fields," the White House detailed in a statement. The administration hopes to stimulate "innovative approaches" which will help people learn valuable technology skills; beneficiaries include single parents, individuals with disabilities, disconnected youth and those who are not entirely proficient in English.
The president has secured commitments from more than 300 employers and more than 21 local governments to train and hire low-skilled workers for jobs in software development, network administration and cybersecurity, the AP detailed.
The communities that will lead the effort include: Albuquerque; Buffalo County, Nebraska; Chattanooga; Colorado; Delaware; Detroit; Kansas City, Missouri; eastern rural Kentucky; Los Angeles; Louisville, Kentucky; Memphis; Minneapolis; Nashville; New York; Philadelphia; Portland, Oregon; Rochester, New York; St. Louis; Salt Lake City; San Antonio; and San Francisco.
Bryan Huddleston, the chief executive of the Nashville Technology Council, told USA Today that he will help implement the program in his region.
"It's us working together as a community to help solve and address the talent gap problem," Huddleston said. "Even though we've grown, there is still a big need to fill the positions."
The need for a new approach to high-technology jobs is illustrated, for example, by the technology programs at Middle Tennessee community, where courses are not filled to capacity and graduation rates are as low as 20 percent, according to the council.
"(We are) letting students know, or someone who is a displaced worker know, (that) there is a great career in technology, and you don't have to have a Ph.D. to get it," Huddleston insisted.
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