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Colorado Community College System Partners With National Tech Apprenticeship Program

The Colorado Community College System (CCCS), the state’s largest system of higher education and workforce development, is partnering with CompTIA Apprenticeships for Tech, a program created to increase the number of IT workers across America and expand career opportunities to groups underrepresented in the tech workforce, the organizations announced .

As part of this collaboration CCCS will leverage new National Guideline Standards for education and training in four essential IT occupations – tech support specialists, network support specialists, cybersecurity support technicians and tech project coordinators.

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“With our long-standing commitment of being a driver of workforce development across the state, CCCS is pleased to partner on this initiative which will expand opportunities for Coloradans to access information technology apprenticeship programs in high skill, high wage, and in-demand occupations,” said Michael Macklin, associate vice chancellor for academic affairs and workforce development at the Colorado Community College System. “These new apprenticeship programs will make it easier for businesses to partner with community colleges to quickly start and hire apprentices, tapping into the existing pipeline of community college students.”

The new partnership builds on CCCS’s CO-TECH program, which is making high-wage, high-demand IT occupations accessible to 1,600 adults statewide, regardless of previous education.

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“We’re excited to support CCCS in its mission to provide the people of Colorado with high quality, affordable higher education leading to new career opportunities in fields such as IT where employment opportunities are abundant,” said Amy Kardel, vice president for strategic workforce relationships at CompTIA.

In the 12 months between June 2020 and May 2021 Colorado employers listed open positions for 8,353 IT support specialists, 5,481 network administrators and engineers, 5,554 cybersecurity analysts and engineers and 5,592 IT project managers, according to CompTIA’s analysis of data from Burning Glass Labor Insights.

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CompTIA Apprenticeships for Tech is a nationwide initiative created to increase the number of IT workers across America and expand tech career opportunities for women, individuals with disabilities, people of color and other populations. The initiative is funded by the U.S. Department of Labor and delivered by CompTIA, the nonprofit association for the IT industry and workforce, and Maher & Maher, a recognized leader in building innovative and successful apprenticeship initiatives.

CompTIA’s National Guideline Standards detail the competencies in both technical and employability skills that apprentices and other trainees will need to join the IT workforce in four entry-level roles in IT.

  • Tech Support Specialists, responsible for analyzing, troubleshooting, and rectifying day-to-day technology problems and challenges.
  • Network Support Specialists who analyze, troubleshoot and evaluate problems with computer networks.
  • Cybersecurity Support Technicians tasked with detecting cyber threats and implementing changes to protect an organization.
  • Tech Project Coordinators who manage an organization’s information systems’ project–based work, including the start-up, execution and closure of IT projects.

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