TechPoint receives $600,000 Skill UP grant to attract and develop top tech talent

TechPoint will use a $600,000 grant from DWD to to further develop its Xtern and Tech Fellowship talent attraction programs.

TechPoint, through the CICP Foundation, has been awarded more than $600,000 through Skill UP Indiana, a grant program the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (DWD) created to advance programs aimed at retaining, attracting and developing talent.

The Skill UP Indiana grant program intends to foster the growth of skills and competencies essential to filling the one million Hoosier jobs projected to be available over the next 10 years. Of the nearly $11 million awarded to organizations across the state, the $600,000+ awarded to TechPoint will be used to scale and enhance their talent programs that seek to fuel the growth of the region’s tech sector.

TechPoint’s Skill Up Indiana Award

Between 2009 and 2014, Central Indiana gained over 5,000 computer related jobs, experiencing a 17 percent increase — more than double the 8% growth rate of all occupations. This rapid industry growth has caused an increased demand for tech skilled talent and established the tech industry as a key, wealth-producing sector in Central Indiana.

Rapid tech sector growth is not unique to Central Indiana. Nationwide we are facing a projected 1 million person talent shortage for computer skilled occupations leading up to the year 2020, meaning Indiana is going to have to take swift and deliberate action to remain competitive in attracting talent. The good news is that the output of technology trained graduates from Indiana colleges and universities has been steadily increasing. The challenge is that companies like Google, Microsoft, and Apple are recruiting from in-state institutions and pulling talented students to the Coasts. TechPoint’s Talent Initiative has developed programs that seek to close the tech talent gap in two ways: equipping the next generation with industry-driven training and retaining them in Indiana upon graduation.

Skill Up Indiana funding will allow TechPoint to scale their talent programs, ultimately injecting more tech-skilled college students into internship opportunities and closing skills gaps so that those students can more effectively and quickly fill industry hiring needs. Funding will power the following programs:

Xtern Bootcamp: This program will  expand TechPoint’s existing Xtern summer internship program to create high quality training and work-and-learn opportunities for less-experienced but high-potential Indiana college students.

Xtern and Tech Fellowship Curricula: TechPoint will leverage its research in identifying the precise workforce needs of both tech companies and tech-enabled companies to build professional and personal development curriculum for their Xterns and its new Tech Fellowship post-graduate program.

In total, TechPoint Talent programs will work with more than 40 Central Indiana (Region 5) employers to create and enhance 395 work-and-learn internship experiences and will facilitate hiring and job readiness training for 50 full-time hires over the 18-month grant period.

“Our Xtern and Tech Fellowship programs have been recruiting top-shelf tech-skilled talent from dozens of universities across the country and placing them in 40+ Indiana companies for world-class internship and post-grad work experiences,” said Mike Langellier, president and CEO of TechPoint.  “As a result, those participants are 66% more likely to live and work in Indiana after graduation. 900 students applied to be Xterns next summer, and we will place 130 in the Xtern program, but that leaves many, many more very talented students who who want to be here, and we want them to be, but we don’t have capacity. This grant will help us extend the scale of our programs so that we can offer this incredible experience to more young talent, thus increasing Indiana’s talent pipeline.”

To learn more about these programs, visit http://xtern.me/ and http://techpoint.org/techfellowship/.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Staff Report. TechPoint is focused on strengthening the tech community in Indiana.