Governor Kemp announces technical skills training commitment to prepare 5,500 Georgia residents for cloud computing careers
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp announced this week a collaborative initiative put forward by the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG), the Georgia Department of Education (GADOE), the Technology Association of Georgia (TAG), and Amazon Web Services (AWS) to train and reskill learners in Georgia with in-demand job skills. Focused on increasing the number of professionals skilled in cloud computing, these organizations have come together to make available skills training, curriculum, and job search support in industries with growing needs in the technology space. Through this effort, Georgia institutions have committed to train 5,500 learners statewide to prepare them to pursue AWS Certifications by 2024.
This statewide initiative will support some of Governor Kemp’s key education and economic priorities, including growing a skilled workforce across the industry spectrum to support Georgia’s growing and changing economy and increasing opportunities for dual enrollment. Through this initiative, high schools and community colleges in Georgia will offer cloud computing courses and credentials that align with skills needed to pursue in-demand technical careers. The initiative will also place a bold emphasis on supporting rural communities, elevating the work of the Rural Jobs Initiative, to ensure that the resources and opportunities made available through forthcoming programs are accessible to individuals in rural parts of the state.
The need for technical training in Georgia
Georgia has been at the forefront of a booming technology sector. Forbes named Atlanta one of the 5 U.S. Cities Poised to Become Tomorrow’s Tech Mecca, a city where the number of tech jobs have grown 46 percent since 2010. According to Economic Modeling Specialist International (EMSI), there are over 125,000 cloud computing jobs available in Georgia.
The experiences of the COVID-19 pandemic emphasized the importance of technology in maintaining and growing state and local economies. With the near instant transition from physical to digital during the initial months of the pandemic, industries, employers, citizens, and consumers became keenly aware that having a workforce capable of enabling technology solutions was critical to maintaining daily operations. The pandemic also emphasized the growing divide between urban communities and rural communities, where issues to support remote school and remote work were perpetuated by a lack of broadband connectivity in most rural areas.
This initiative will help to address both the opportunities and challenges presented by the pandemic, and to support the growth trajectory of Georgia’s technology sector. AWS will provide technical skills training and education focused on skilling for jobs available in Georgia from organizations across various sectors and industries looking to fill positions in software development, cloud architecture, data science, cybersecurity, cloud support engineers, and more.
TAG will add an important component to this initiative, which is ensuring that training, curriculum, and job search support opportunities are available to rural communities. TAG convenes companies across the state to help educate, influence, and promote technology; this includes working with AWS to make sure companies located in rural areas across the state benefit from skills training. Learners in rural communities going through these programs—whether school age or at later career stages—will be connected to TAG member companies looking for professionals with cloud computing skills.
“Pyramid Academy is very excited to help get more AWS-skilled workers into the workforce,” said Somya Tirath, director of operations, Pyramid Consulting, a local TAG association company. “With AWS, we feel like we are helping in two ways. First, for the individual who wants to learn valuable cloud skills and gain access to stable, financially attractive jobs in technology. Second, for our clients, helping them address the large talent gaps that they face.”
Education programs and instructor trainings
Through this initiative, TCSG and Georgia DOE will work with AWS Academy to help education institutions in the state set up cloud computing curriculum that prepares students to obtain industry-recognized AWS Certifications required for many in-demand cloud jobs. For K12 institutions, this collaboration supports the Georgia Department of Education’s mission to prepare students for success in the global economy, providing many school age students new opportunities for dual enrollment, and to prepare them with top-of-market job skills ahead of high school graduation. “We are committed to expanding opportunities for all students, preparing them for life and for rewarding careers,” said Richard Woods, Georgia state school superintendent. “We have a goal to certify 1,200 K12 students across our state in cloud computing, giving them a pathway to a career in this thriving industry.”
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