Coming out of a period of skyrocketing unemployment rates, seeking a certificate or degree in an in-demand field tops everyone's list. Imagine earning highly sought-after credentials, gaining career training and then immediately joining the workforce in a field with exponential growth. That’s the benefit of apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship programs.

Apprenticeships receive training focused on mastering specific skills an employer requires for a particular role or occupation in their business. Pre-apprenticeship offers the opportunity to get qualified to enter an apprenticeship program.  Broward College's Pathways to Career Opportunities Grant program provides exactly that with its pre-apprenticeships for Information Technology Specialist and Network Support Technician. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for information technology specialists is expected to grow by 11 percent by 2026, which is faster than average.

The pre-apprenticeship program offered through Broward College's Pathways to Career Opportunities Grant includes credentials in COMPTIA A+ and N+ and training in job readiness and career exploration. The College also offers many IT degree pathways and advanced certificate programs, giving students the ability to gain more skills. Students who complete the pre-apprenticeship program have the opportunity to either seek an entry-level position, enroll as apprentices or pursue more education. 

To help students understand working in the industry as part of its celebration of National Apprenticeship Week, recognized from November 15 to 21, the College organized the panel discussion, "Exploring Careers in Information Technology," on its North Campus in Coconut Creek on November 17 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.  The event welcomed over 30 pre-apprentices and potential pre-apprentices in addition to others to hear from experts in the field.

Panelist Experts included: 

  • Margaret Brisbane, director/CIO, Miami Dade County Information Technology Department 
  • Tamecka McKay, director, Infrastructure Operations, City of Fort Lauderdale 
  • Dave Seepersad, senior software engineer, Industry Solutions, Microsoft 
  • Sherman Daley, RF engineer and project manager, CBN Solutions 
  • Samar Swaid, dean, Information Technology and Engineering, Broward College 

 

The panelists provided career advice, personal experiences and insight into the field.  The discussion was moderated by Christine Honeycutt, dean of Career and Technical Education Support Services.

Although Apprenticeship Week has ended, the Pathways to Career Opportunities program will continue to provide innovative speaking engagements and other events to highlight the benefits of apprenticeship and engage potential students and industry partners.

Currently, there are 45 students enrolled in the program, but there is room for more.  The program is seeking to recruit 80 students from local non-profit organizations throughout Broward County, residents living within Broward UP™ communities, and former students who want to earn other credentials. Applicants must complete registration by December 10.

If you would like more information on the program or get registered, send an email to apprenticeship@broward.edu.
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