By Bo Gebbie, Vice President, Sales, Services and Marketing, Evolving Solutions
Those of us in the Information Technology (IT) field know we are nearing a talent crisis in Minnesota. According to a recent Minnesota Tech Association Workforce Update report, there are 10,369 IT jobs currently open1 in the State of Minnesota with a median average salary of $119,200. The gap between available jobs and available skilled individuals to fill those jobs is only expected to widen.
To have today’s technology help ensure there is a deep, talented pool of capable, self-driven, and team-minded individuals to fill these jobs, is critical to Minnesota’s continued economic growth. But we cannot just hope that more students will graduate from tech schools or universities and be ready to fill these roles. It is actually too late to start encouraging students to explore IT once they start college. To truly shrink the skills gap and ensure we have a talented technical workforce, we need to engage students even earlier than that.
This is exactly why I support the mission of Genesys Works, and it is why Evolving Solutions has quickly adopted the organization as one of our top charitable giving partners. Genesys Works’ unique mission of providing pathways to career success for high school students in underserved communities through skills training, meaningful work experiences, and impactful relationships is so important. Besides supporting Genesys Works, we have also implemented a college internship program to support the development of our next generation of leaders and give students hands-on experience working for a technology company.
It is not only important for Minnesota’s future workforce, but it is even more critical for the students who participate in the Genesys Works program. Not only are they learning life-changing technical and professional skills, but they are also earning up to $14,000 during their year-long internship. Additionally, Genesys Works has a 100% college acceptance rate for those students who want to further their education.
Right now, we are in the middle of COVID-19, and we will be living with the issues surrounding this pandemic for months to come. There is a more urgent need than ever to support Genesys Works. The organization is quickly adapting its programming to continue to support the students who need our help the most.
I recently joined the Genesys Works Technology Partner Advisory Council. I did so because of the organization’s mission, and because I’m in sheer awe of how and what Genesys Works is helping students learn. Think about it. The funds these students earn and the skills development they receive, help empower them to change their lives. I only hope that through my network and my involvement, I can help make a small difference in these students’ lives. I am even more impressed with how Genesys Works is continuing their mission during these times that are negatively impacting so many nonprofits and companies of all sizes.
For those of us in the local tech community, whether at a solutions provider, an enterprise organization, or a start-up, we can all help make a difference. We can support Genesys Works with our time, with our financial support and better yet, by providing additional internship opportunities for students. Together, we’ll help these students develop the skills they need to change not only their lives but the future of our entire state.