TechLaunch @ FVI is forging ahead, once again, to accelerate the growth of the Miami Tech industry.
Working in association with CareerSource South Florida, TechLaunch has helped to secure millions of dollars of federal funding for tech education in South Florida, through President Obama’s TechHire Initiative. On June 19th, TechHire will launch South Florida’s first ever federally funded coding bootcamps for high school students throughout the region.
Silicon Beach – The New Tech Hub
Thanks in large part to the efforts of local leaders and community organizers like Rick Beasley (Executive Director of CareerSource South Florida), and Arnie Girnun (Co-Chair of TechHire.Miami & Chief Success officer of TechLaunch @ FVI), the Miami Tech industry has grown by leaps and bounds over the past few years. Just this year, Miami surpassed San Francisco and Austin, Texas as the #1 city for startup activity in the United States.
Many in the national tech scene are calling Miami the new “Silicon Beach”. Miami has become a major cultural nexus, where the US tech industry can begin to interact with largely untapped Latin American markets. What all this means for the local economy, long-term, remains to be seen, but the trend is clear. The tech industry in Miami will continue to grow, and jobs will become more and more readily available to people with tech skills.
“Between 2016–2024, more than 3,200 new tech jobs are projected to become available in Miami-Dade County, with an additional 2,409 jobs opening due to attrition.” — Career Source South Florida
President Obama’s TechHire Program
In March of 2016, Girnun and Beasley secured a major win for the South Florida tech industry. Working closely with the White House, they got Miami designated as a “TechHire City” through President Obama’s TechHire initiative. Since its inception in 2016, the TechHire.Miami program has already brought millions of dollars in federal grants into the Miami tech ecosystem. TechHire is directing these funds with the express goal of helping local underprivileged youth learn the skills they need to thrive in the tech industry, without having to obtain expensive and time consuming four-year degrees.
“Our goal is to build a talent supply for the information technology industry in [South Florida].” — Rick Beasley, CareerSource South Florida Executive Director
This month’s “TechHire Summer Bootcamp” will be the first TechHire program in South Florida.
TechHire Summer Bootcamp
Administered through TechLaunch @ FVI, along with several other partner agencies, this summer bootcamp will be the first of its kind. Four hundred high school students, from underprivileged neighborhoods and federally-recognized needy families, will have the opportunity to participate in the program. Not only will the program be free of charge for these students, but they will actually receive a $300 stipend for completing the program, and $200 awarded once they complete the associated certifications. These stipends can help to cover students transportation costs, encourage them to complete the credential certifications, and put them into a financial position that gives them the opportunity to attend and complete the program.
How to Qualify For The Program
In order to apply to the program, students must meet the following requirements:
- Miami-Dade County resident
- Miami-Dade County Public School attendee
- Between the age of 15 – 22 years
- Receives free and/or reduced lunch or
- Family receives Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
To apply to the program, click here.
“This is a powerful opportunity to empower the high school youth of Miami by making them aware of careers in technology and sparking an interest in the high demand careers of web development and cyber security.” — Arnie Girnun, Co-Chair of TechHire.Miami & Chief Success officer of TechLaunch @ FVI
What the Students Will Learn
Auto CAD (Automated Computer-Aided Drafting & Design) is a program that allows users to create 2D and 3D models. This software is often used for creating blueprints for architectural projects, engineering, and manufacturing, among many other applications. Learning this program can help prepare students to work as computer specialists in Miami’s engineering, manufacturing, and construction industries.
Cybersecurity, or IT Security, has come into the international spotlight recently. Several major hacks, including some of world-changing significance (alleged hacking in the US elections, a major hack in recent weeks that shut down much of the UK health care system, and many more), have come to light in recent months, that have put cybersecurity front-and-center the world stage. Students will learn how to protect computer systems from hackers, among other things. Cybersecurity is a growing field, with lots of demand and sky-high earning potential.
CompTIA A+ certification
For kids who like fixing and working with computers, CompTIA (Computing Technology Industry Association) A+ certification is the way to go. It can help students get their foot in the door for entry-level computer jobs. The CompTIA course teaches students to install, maintain, and repair computer systems.
For kids who love playing video games, becoming a game designer can be a dream come true. For adults looking to earn a good living, being a game designer can be a lucrative career path. By learning to design video games, students can explore one of the more “fun” sides of the coding world. At the same time, they gain real-world skills they can use to get jobs in the Miami tech industry.
Many of the highest paid professionals in the world are computer programmers. Five of the ten richest people in the world made their fortunes by building software. By utilizing their powers of logic and reasoning, computer programmers can communicate with computers and tell them what to do. These are the people who build our apps and design our computer programs. Students who learn to program computers in High School tend to find themselves at a huge advantage later on. When they graduate, they have many more options for jobs and/or higher education.
Good for Students, Good for Miami Tech
It is this type of school and community partnership that helps prepare our students for the workforce and gives them a competitive edge. — Alberto M. Carvalho, MDCPS superintendent
While this bootcamp will provide students with some of the skills and credentials that they need to get entry-level jobs in Miami’s tech industry, the real goal of the program is to pique the kids’ interest in technology in general, in the hopes that they will get into tech-related careers for the long-run.
TechLaunch’s mission is stated in its simple motto: “New careers in under a year.” By working with passionate, experienced instructors who are leaders in their field, students are motivated to learn and grow, and strive to get their “dream jobs” instead of getting stuck in dead-end jobs and unfulfilling career paths. TechLaunch is the first coding bootcamp in Florida that has been approved for Federal Financial Aid. You can find more information at www.techlaunch.io.