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Lincoln program hopes to fast-track job, seeks to fill needed tech positions



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A new program in Lincoln is hoping to put job seekers on the fast track to success while filling thousands of open tech positions in Nebraska.It’s called Edu Tech, a collaboration between The Center for People in Need and Google. The tech-focused education uses Google’s Career Certificate course, which is mostly done online, but the program offers computer lab time and academic support.”You can do it in your pajamas at home, at three in the morning. You can’t sleep. You can get up and you can watch a video you can read something and then you can take a quiz and move on to the next thing,” said Edu Tech Coordinator Kathy Najjar.She said the course takes four to six months to complete.It focuses on UX design, IT support, data analytics and project management.”The only way to fail is to not show up. Because you can try over and over again until you get the answers right. Okay, so so don’t give up,” Najjar said. In the end, students get a certificate from Google, which usually costs over $300 and a gateway to entry-level tech jobs.”Most of these entry-level jobs will start at between 15 and $20 an hour,” Najjar said.Google donated 100 scholarships this year.One went to Somia Kitier. “I was looking for this for a very long time,” Kitier said.She has been trying to advance from her job in food services for a long time.”If you’re not good at computer, you’re not going to find you know, a better job,” Kitier said. She’s tried community college courses but had to drop out. “Because of child care and time,” Kitier said.The flexible schedule makes Edu Tech possible for Kitier. The Center also received a $600,000 grant in federal ARPA funds from the city of Lincoln to further assist students who qualify.”Food boxes, vouchers for transportation and childcare. We also have a household goods and clothing room. We have a room that is for professional work, work apparel,” Najjar said.Amber Knapp of the American Job Center said they can also assist students with interviews and find jobs.”It would be our goal to find a site that could sponsor you and do an internship with you,” Knapp said.Businesses also benefit.According to the Nebraska Department of Labor, there are currently more than 8,500 tech job openings in the state.Our tech industries are having a hard time growing because they’re having a difficult time finding people to grow with them,” Najjar said.It is an opportunity Timothy Okoliko said he wants to take advantage of.”Since you know people are investing in you and with a name like Google, you want to give it your best shot,” Okoliko said. The program will continue until 2024.The number of scholarships could increase next year depending upon demand and success of the program.

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LINCOLN, Neb. —

A new program in Lincoln is hoping to put job seekers on the fast track to success while filling thousands of open tech positions in Nebraska.

It’s called Edu Tech, a collaboration between The Center for People in Need and Google.

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The tech-focused education uses Google’s Career Certificate course, which is mostly done online, but the program offers computer lab time and academic support.

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“You can do it in your pajamas at home, at three in the morning. You can’t sleep. You can get up and you can watch a video you can read something and then you can take a quiz and move on to the next thing,” said Edu Tech Coordinator Kathy Najjar.

She said the course takes four to six months to complete.

It focuses on UX design, IT support, data analytics and project management.

“The only way to fail is to not show up. Because you can try over and over again until you get the answers right. Okay, so so don’t give up,” Najjar said.

In the end, students get a certificate from Google, which usually costs over $300 and a gateway to entry-level tech jobs.

“Most of these entry-level jobs will start at between 15 and $20 an hour,” Najjar said.

Google donated 100 scholarships this year.

One went to Somia Kitier.

“I was looking for this for a very long time,” Kitier said.

She has been trying to advance from her job in food services for a long time.

“If you’re not good at computer, you’re not going to find you know, a better job,” Kitier said.

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She’s tried community college courses but had to drop out.

“Because of child care and time,” Kitier said.

The flexible schedule makes Edu Tech possible for Kitier.

The Center also received a $600,000 grant in federal ARPA funds from the city of Lincoln to further assist students who qualify.

“Food boxes, vouchers for transportation and childcare. We also have a household goods and clothing room. We have a room that is for professional work, work apparel,” Najjar said.

Amber Knapp of the American Job Center said they can also assist students with interviews and find jobs.

“It would be our goal to find a site that could sponsor you and do an internship with you,” Knapp said.

Businesses also benefit.

According to the Nebraska Department of Labor, there are currently more than 8,500 tech job openings in the state.

Our tech industries are having a hard time growing because they’re having a difficult time finding people to grow with them,” Najjar said.

It is an opportunity Timothy Okoliko said he wants to take advantage of.

“Since you know people are investing in you and with a name like Google, you want to give it your best shot,” Okoliko said.

The program will continue until 2024.

The number of scholarships could increase next year depending upon demand and success of the program.

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