Washington – President Obama on Monday announced a new TechHire Initiative, which includes a campaign to work with communities to provide training programs to help women and underrepresented minorities secure well-paying technology jobs.
The TechHire Initiative will focus on 20 regions identified by Burning Glass Technologies, a labor data analytics company, which have over 120,000 open technology jobs and more than 300 employer partners in need of employees with technology skills.
The plan is for employers to work together in these regions to find new ways to recruit and place applicants based on their skills, in addition to creating fast-track tech training opportunities.
U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill – a longtime supporter of federal job-training opportunities and of policies to grow the nation’s technology sector – said the initiative will directly benefit the St. Louis region.
“St. Louis is home to some of our country’s most innovative companies – employers that are cutting new paths for industry, and expanding good-paying job opportunities in our state. This new effort highlights this growing economic engine in our region, and is good news for business.”
The White House said more than 150 employers in the St. Louis region will expand upon a successful pilot program by MasterCard, to partner with local non-profit Launchcode and build the skills of women and minorities for tech jobs.
The network of companies will also place 250 apprentices in jobs in 2015 at employers including Monsanto, CitiBank and Anheuser Busch.
McCaskill last year helped lead the effort in Congress to renew the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, and joined St. Louis area veterans and Mayor Francis Slay to call for renewal of the legislation to expand employment opportunities for Missourians.
Burning Glass Technologies, a labor data analytics company, which provided data to the White, found that, in addition to St. Louis, some of the regions with a high ratio of open tech jobs outside the usual New York and Silicon Valley areas include Colorado, Delaware and Detroit, MI.