White House Welcomes Cleveland’s “We Can Code IT” at Tech Industry Event

CLEVELAND, OH (January 5, 2017) Indira Samuels was a recent college graduate and a single mom earning $15,000 a year working for Teach for America in Cleveland.  While teaching her students how to do computer coding, she decided to become a coder herself. After a 22-week coding bootcamp with Cleveland’s We Can Code IT, Samuels was offered a role as software engineer and a starting salary of $60,000. This is the kind of success story celebrated at the White House TechHire event in December.

The White House invited more than 100 talented technologists, innovators and community leaders – including Cleveland’s own Leslie Evans, the president of We Can Code IT — to celebrate the success of President Obama’s TechHire initiative launched in 2015. We Can Code IT focuses on creating a welcoming environment for women and minorities to learn computer coding and software development skills.  

“When the White House calls, people answer,” says Evans. “So there were government officials, tech industry leaders and other training providers all working together to create pipelines of tech talent in communities across the country.  We now have a much bigger network to collaborate with here in Cleveland.”

TechHire is a growing network of 70 cities and more than 500 employers across the country striving to train workers for more than 600,000 IT jobs openings. One concept includes relying not only on universities and community colleges but also nontraditional approaches like coding bootcamps to rapidly train workers for a well-paying IT job.

New models for training in the tech industry have the potential to reach underserved communities, women, minorities, veterans, and lower-income workers, who may have the aptitude for tech jobs but haven’t been able to receive training.  TechHire’s “100K by 2020” movement aims to help 100,000 diverse workers learn in-demand skills to start new careers in the growing tech industry by 2020.

For more information on We Can Code IT contact Leslie Evans at 844-932-2626 ext 709 or leslie@wecancodeit.org.