Since Job One first launched at the 2014 CGI America meeting, we’ve witnessed the extraordinary power of business-led solutions for training, mentoring, and empowering our nation’s youth with the skills they need to enter and succeed in the 21st century global economy.
Last year, Job One commitment maker Symantec Corporation teamed up with community partners YearUp, NPower, and LifeJourney to create Symantec Cyber Career Connection (SC3), a program that recruits and trains young, underserved adults with the skills needed to get them on track for high-demand, long-term careers in the field of cybersecurity.
Recently, Symantec held the first graduation of its cybersecurity training program in New York City. For graduates like Devina Elmes, who previously held only a high school diploma, the certificate and training she received from this commitment will provide her with more earning potential and access into a highly-competitive field and lucrative career. Upon graduation from SC3, Devina was offered a full-time position with Marathon Consulting, a partnering company.
When asked for her perspective on SC3 and the opportunity to expand her IT experience and skillset beyond what she acquired from NPower’s Technology Service Corps, a prerequisite for the SC3 program, Devina noted: “I was motivated more than ever to get more knowledge on the IT sector. When the opportunity presented itself, I thought, what better way to gain more knowledge than with a program that I already know and trust, and I applied. I was ready, willing, and driven to complete the program with every certification that was being offered.”
Director of Technical Services at Marathon Consulting Brian Kingsley shared: “We’re excited to add Devina to our growing team of engineers. Her diverse background and NPower training have given her a head start in her career and we look forward to seeing her continue to grow as part of the team at Marathon.”
Commitments like Symantec’s are critically important not just for young men and women like Devina, but also for our economy as a whole. Today, 5.6 million young men and women are out of school and out of work — creating a major gap in our labor force that economists have estimated could cost the United States more than $20 billion dollars in lost earnings.
In addition, over the next five years, the U.S. Department of Labor predicts that there will be more than one million new information technology jobs around the country, yet there aren’t enough people with the right skills training to fill the demand. These youth are an incredible source of untapped talent with the potential to fill critical gaps in the technology sector and other industries around the country.
It will take more businesses, nonprofits, and other organizations like Symantec and their fellow Job One commitment makers to ensure that we tap into that potential and ensure that all young Americans — no matter their background — are supported and empowered with the skills they need to enter the workforce and help build a thriving, prosperous economy for all of us.
Learn more by watching this video of the journeys of three other NPower students who graduated from the Symantec Cyber Career Connection New York City program. Two more SC3 cohorts of students will graduate with Year UP in July.