The Louisiana Workforce Commission’s (LWC) Registered Apprenticeship division has announced the launch of Apprenti Louisiana, the first Information Technology (IT) apprenticeship program in Louisiana.
This program is a collaborative effort between the LWC, NexusLA and the Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC). The program’s main objective is to both prepare and connect Louisiana residents with IT jobs of the future.
The LWC is poised to invest $130,000 in Apprenti Louisiana, which will accept 10 participants in its first cohort. The program will take 15 months of instruction – three months in the classroom and one year of on-the-job training. The program will be a traditional “earn while you learn” Apprenticeship program model. Initial training wages will begin at $35,000 for the first six months, and will increase to over $43,000 thereafter. Students that complete the program will earn CompTIA A+ and Network + credentials.
According to LWC, Louisiana is among the first states in the U.S. to utilize the Apprenti IT model.
The Apprenti website highlights the surety of its program on its website, stating that,
“unlike conventional career pathways, Apprenti takes the stress and uncertainty out of your future. When you are accepted into our program – congratulations, you’re already hired. Your paid training will be specifically tailored to you and a high-tech position will be waiting for you when you finish. If you thought your dream job was out of reach, think again.”
IT employs an estimated 115 million workers in the United States, and it is one of the fastest growing sectors in the national economy. In the last decade, New Orleans has been positioning itself as a technology hub, especially with the news earlier this year that DXC Technologies is adding a new 2,000 job Digital Transformation Center.
Once approved by the Louisiana State Apprenticeship Council, Apprenti Louisiana participants will begin coursework in January with training curriculum to become Cybersecurity Analysts – also called Information Security Analysts, and designated by LWC’s Star Jobs rating system as a Five-Star occupation. Partners anticipate adding pathways for other occupations upon expansion.
Speaking on the impetus behind Louisiana’s investment, Joseph Hollins, Director of Apprenticeship at the LWC, said that, “we saw the great workforce gap that exists in the IT sector in Baton Rouge. Secondly, we saw an opportunity to get underemployed and career transitioning individuals into high paying jobs. Thirdly, we found some partners in NexusLA and BRAC that were just as passionate as us on solving this issue.” Hollins also noted that he hopes that the investment will be a long term fix for the region’s shortfall in the IT sector.
Employers who wish to participate or who would like more information about this program, please contact State Apprenticeship Director Joseph Hollins at JHollins@lwc.la.gov or at (225) 342-5899. Potential applicants can review the program and apply here.