A tech training program with national scope is expanding into the Indianapolis market, introducing its first cohort of 22 aspiring Salesforce-trained professionals to opportunities through training in software and soft skills.

PepUp Tech has set out to create opportunities for people from underserved communities, using the power of technology to open up new career avenues. 

Selina Suarez, PepUp Tech’s founder and CEO, has helped drive the program’s growth. What began in Florida has been expanding up the East Coast with several hundred students, and is moving into new markets, including Indy. 

Programs operate across the talent pipeline from getting K-12 students engaged with STEM to providing software training for entry-level employees. The most intensive PepUp Tech program is the ten-week Salesforce Marketing Cloud Academy, which recently launched its first class in Indy. Through the academy, professionals from underserved communities can seek Salesforce-specific skills to be deployed in roles at various tech companies.

Over ten weeks, students learn the ins and outs of tools and operations within the Salesforce software environment. While the nuts-and-bolts are covered through the lectures, students also can practice soft skills like interview prep. “One of the things that we find is that a lot of our students don’t understand how a tech interview is different from a regular interview,” said Selina. “Our interview coaching sessions include scenarios—we give them scenarios of what they can expect in a typical interview. We then go through those scenarios with them so that they feel comfortable when they’re in the interview.”

The program concludes with a certification that graduates can immediately put to use when entering new roles. PepUp Tech helps connect their graduates with companies and job opportunities to get them involved in the ecosystem.

Salesforce has been a longstanding and enthusiastic partner in spreading the success of PepUp Tech. “PepUp Tech is an incredible organization that Salesforce has been working with for a number of years to help underserved students gain the tech skills they need to begin careers in the Salesforce ecosystem,” said Bob Stutz, CEO of Marketing Cloud at Salesforce. “With the launch of the PepUp Tech Salesforce Marketing Cloud Training Program, I am thrilled that PepUp Tech is expanding in the state of Indiana, helping boost tech talent in the area and training students on how to use Marketing Cloud.”

For many people coming from the underrepresented communities PepUp Tech serves, this program is their first exposure to members of the tech community who look like them. “We have engineers who are people of color. We have developers and product managers who are women,” said Selina. “We have people from all backgrounds who have experienced low income, who can explain what that feeling is like and why it’s possible for these students to take on the same journey.”

The inspiration for aspiration is a key component of PepUp Tech. “This program helps people evolve their own way of thinking and incorporate it in their lives and their community,” said Rebe de la Paz, a Salesforce solution architect with Rightpoint and a curriculum developer and instructor with PepUp Tech. “That way, they can open other people’s minds to the possibilities that are out there.”

For more information on PepUp Tech’s program, check out their website.