White House Announces New Steps to Give More Students and Workers Tech Skills to Fuel Innovation

White House Announces Doubling of TechHire Communities

This Friday, the President is traveling to Austin, Texas to visit South by Southwest—a gathering of our most creative thinkers, coders, makers, and entrepreneurs from across the country—because he recognizes the importance of technology in America’s position as the global leader in innovation. Today, as part of the lead-up to that visit and on the one-year anniversary of the launch of the TechHire initiative, a multi-sector initiative aimed at training Americans in tech skills they need for better jobs and futures, the Administration is announcing new steps to further develop the tech skills of our workforce—driving the ingenuity and creativity that will fuel innovation and the American economy.

Developing the tech skills of our workforce is important for our economic future and is a critical need for employers today. Over half a million of today’s open jobs are in technology fields like software development and cybersecurity—many of which did not even exist a decade ago. The average salary in a job that requires technology skills is 50 percent more than the average private sector job.  Over the past seven years, the President has taken steps to ensure that we are drawing on people from all backgrounds including young adults who are disconnected from school and work, Americans who are long-term unemployed, and workers who are retraining for new jobs to prepare for the tech jobs of the future. To that end, the White House is expanding TechHire to 50 Communities. A year ago today, the President launched TechHire as 21 communities working with over 300 employers announced actions to empower Americans with the skills they need. These communities are piloting programs to train workers—often in just a few months—through nontraditional approaches like “coding bootcamps.” Today, we are announcing that we have reached the goal set by the President to double the number of TechHire communities from 21 to more than 40 with the addition of 15 new communities working with 200 employers joining the effort.  

Jobs for the Future will develop a report to be released in March 2016 that highlights the work of six of the initial TechHire communities to consolidate lessons learned and allow communities to adopt best practices from one another. The report will include lessons from LA HI-TECH in Los Angeles, CA; Code Louisville in Louisville, KY; NYC Tech Talent Pipeline in New York, NY; Code Oregon in Portland, OR; TechSF in San Francisco, CA; and LaunchCode in St. Louis, MO and will be disseminated nationwide.

Read the White House's announcement.