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December 14, 2018

CT to launch tech 'boot camp' sites in Hartford, Stamford

Photo | Contributed Members of the InsurGuru team working at Upward Hartford in downtown Hartford.

In an effort to spur Connecticut’s tech workforce, the state says it’s seeding $2.5 million to support two new “boot camp” training programs in Hartford and Stamford.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy on Thursday afternoon announced training firm Tech Talent South will debut early in 2019 at downtown Hartford incubator and co-working space Upward Hartford (20 Church St.), and another firm, General Assembly, will establish an operation in Stamford.

The boot camps are focused on developing the state’s next-generation tech talent, especially those residing in areas with the highest unemployment rates in Connecticut. The two firms are expected to enroll 400 students by 2020.

Under the state’s Tech Talent Fund, Connecticut will provide both firms $750,000 for the inaugural year and $500,000 in year two to cover operational costs and scholarships.

The Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) oversees the fund, created by state lawmakers in 2016 to fill thousands of tech jobs and reduce the jobless rate.

DECD Commissioner Catherine Smith said participants will mainly be trained in data analytics and code writing.

“Having a healthy and growing technology talent pipeline is critical to attract and retain business growth and innovation throughout our state,” Smith said.

Tech Talent South currently has 11 campuses nationwide, including Charlotte, Atlanta, Dallas, New Orleans and San Antonio, offering corporate training partnerships, workshops on Google Analytics and a variety of public courses geared toward web development training.

Meantime, General Assembly offers training and assessments in data science, web development, digital marketing and other areas through online courses and on-site trainings. It has an international footprint in addition to 13 U.S. locations in Boston, Providence, New York City, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., San Francisco and Seattle, among others.

Malloy said the program builds off the state’s emphasis on increasing the number of computer science graduates in Connecticut, which he says has grown by 136 percent at local universities since 2012.

That bodes well for Connecticut’s incoming tech companies such as India-based information technology and outsourcing provider Infosys, which plans to hire 1,000 workers at its office in downtown Hartford’s Goodwin Square, and West Hartford-bound fintech Ideanomics, which is hiring 330 workers to occupy its West Hartford campus.

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