Metal Toad Supports the TechHire Initiative
Following the President's State of the Union Address, the US Department of Labor announced the TechHire Grant Competition - a $100 million dollar grant to support innovative approaches to moving lower skilled workers into information technology and high growth jobs. For the software industry, with is overflowing with these types of jobs, this represents a beacon of governmental support for providing an onramp into the industry that is sorely needed.
Together with Oregon-based Worksystems, Inc., Metal Toad is signing on to TechRise PDX - Portland's response to the TechHire Grant. We believe this grant response will ultimately not only be good for Portland, but for the national software industry as well.
We are bringing two of our core innovations to the table:
- Our apprenticeship model
- Mentorship Saturdays
The first, our apprenticeship model, has allowed us, a small business of under 50 people, to commit to providing 96 apprenticeships over the next three years. On a relatively basis, I don't know a single company in the country who is committed to making that kind of impact. Rather than treating this as secret sauce, we will be bundling up our program as an "apprenticeship-in-a-box" and promoting it broadly among companies who are looking to make a difference in providing amazing opportunities to a broad inclusive demographic.
The second aspect, our Mentorship Saturdays have been a labor of love from our software development team. By simply providing the space to a passionate group of senior developers, we are now able to offer an introductory exposure to the software industry to a group of 30 to 40 people every week. This has created an opportunity for mentors not only at our company but throughout the community created a place for people to give back.
I have attached the full letter of support. Please wish Worksystems, us and the rest of the TechRise group well. We will let you know how things evolve!