Akron Urban League launches technical training program

From Crain’s Akron Business: The league has teamed up with KeyBank
and We Can Code IT to launch Ignite to provide candidates with technical
and soft job skills.
The Akron Urban League is teaming up with some major players in local workforce
development to provide technical training to Akron-area residents.
The nonprofit, which focuses on helping African-Americans in and around Akron, said it has
partnered with the Akron workforce development entity ConxusNEO, Cleveland’s We Can
Code IT software boot camp and the KeyBank Center for Technology, Innovation and
Inclusive Growth to launch a new program called Ignite.
“Ignite is more than a workforce development program, it is a community need that promotes
economic self-reliance and social empowerment, which are the pillars of the Akron Urban
League’s mission,” said league interim president and CEO Larry Chadwick in a statement.
The program will provide training and certifications as it teaches skills that will enable
students to work with and troubleshoot hardware, networks and mobile devices, according to
the Ignite website.
Backers say the program will be more than a simple, hard-skills training endeavor and is not
meant to be a “quick fix.”
“Candidates will have the benefit of soft skills training, emotional intelligence training,
professional mentoring, resume writing, and interviewing workshops. In addition, each
candidate will complete a career assessment to assist in identifying their best career choice,
from a variety of fields including, but not limited to: Healthcare (Clinical & Support Careers),
Manufacturing, Public Service, Banking & Finance, & IT Analyst Certification,” the league said
in a news release.
By virtue of its partnership with ConxusNEO, Ignite will seek to provide candidates with the
training that employers say they need and which are in demand locally. Unearthing those
needs is a key part of ConxusNEO’s mission.
Many employers are facing a tight labor market in which talent is tough to find, but
ConxusNEO president Sue Lacy said there’s an opportunity to serve both the needs of
employers and those of an underserved community.
“Historically low unemployment rates don’t tell the whole story. Marginalized populations are
being left out at the same time employers are in a persistent struggle to find talent,” Lacy
said in an announcement for Ignite. “We’re excited about the potential for this partnership to
tap into a talent source that is often overlooked by companies.”

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(2019, January 22). Akron Urban League launches technical training program.  Crain’s Akron Business. Retrieved from https://www.crainscleveland.com/nonprofits/akron-urban-league-launches-technical-training-program