BIRMINGHAM, Alabama – The growing tech sector in Birmingham will get a boost from the city being selected to take part in the TechHire Initiative, a White House program that creates pathways to well-paying technology jobs.
Birmingham, which has targeted 300 new tech jobs, was among 10 cities and states added the TechHire Initiative on Tuesday. The White House describes the program as multi-sector effort to help Americans develop the skills they need to succeed in today’s economy.
It says the TechHire initiative includes engagement through universities and community colleges, innovative approaches like “coding bootcamps,” and online courses that can fast-track workers for technology jobs that pay 50 percent more than average private-sector jobs.
“Supplying a local, highly trained workforce is a win-win for the city,” Mayor William Bell said. “Local citizens benefit from the high-paying jobs in the tech sector, and it makes the city more attractive for technology companies to locate and relocate here.”
CATALYST FOR GROWTH
Several tech-skills training initiatives have launched recently in Birmingham, including Innovation Depot’s “Depot U” program, a 10-week course that focuses on turning aspiring web developers into employed front-end engineers. The University of Alabama at Birmingham and the Birmingham Business Alliance are also involved in efforts to provide tech training.
“The city of Birmingham has a real opportunity through the TechHire Initiative to strengthen its position in technology and innovation,” said Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce. “This initiative can serve as a catalyst to build on the foundation that includes Innovation Depot, Southern Research and a number of promising start-up companies in this part of our state.
“This program’s emphasis on rapid training will serve to expand the number of skilled tech workers needed by startups and small tech businesses in the Birmingham metro area,” he added.