Tech education leader Lighthouse Labs is launching a new initiative named ICT Boost with some serious financial backing from the Federal Government.
Funded in part by Canada’s Sectoral Workforce Solutions Program (SWSP), Lighthouse Labs will receive just over $21 million to lead a consortium of partner post-secondary institutions, as well as industry and community organizations, to bring the ICT Boost program to life.
The program will equip over 1,700 individuals with the skills needed to thrive in the Information Communication and Technology (ICT) sector.
ICT Boost is part of the Government of Canada’s investment to support demand-driven solutions for sectors hardest hit by the pandemic and those key to economic recovery. The SWSP funding will support equity-deserving communities that have faced significant systemic inequality or other barriers to full and equal participation in the labour market.
“Lighthouse Labs is providing much needed, targeted support to Canadians across the country who have faced barriers to entering the workforce. The training, mentorships and career services offered through ICT Boost will help Canadians secure good jobs in the growing technology sector,” says Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough.
“Through our Sectoral Workforce Solutions Program, we are supporting organizations like Lighthouse Labs in their efforts to help people get the skills they need to find work and succeed in key sectors such as the information and technology field.”
Participants will be able to access several Lighthouse Labs upskilling programs through ICT Boost, including web development, data science, and cyber security. ICT Boost will also provide post-program support through Lighthouse Labs’ mentor support system, essential skills and non-technical training, tech stipends and career services.
ICT Boost will build an ecosystem of opportunities in the ICT sector.
To achieve this, Lighthouse Labs will collaborate with 36+ organizations and select higher education partners across Canada, including McMaster University, Alberta University of Arts, Saskatchewan Polytechnic, Mohawk College, University of Guelph, NorQuest College, Manitoba Institute of Trades and Technology and the University of Victoria.
“The tech sector fuels the Canadian economy, and it’s critical that we match the rapid growth in the market with future-thinking training opportunities. It should take no one by surprise that there are barriers to entry into tech, which has created an ecosystem that is not reflective of the population of Canada,” says Jeremy Shaki, CEO of Lighthouse Labs.
“At Lighthouse Labs, we want to ensure that everyone is well represented in designing and strengthening solutions for our increasingly changing future. With the support of the Government of Canada, ICT Boost will work alongside our partners to provide skills training to enter the workforce and empower students to take advantage of this booming industry.”
ICT Boost has already begun partnering with a minimum of eight post-secondary institutions and 18 non-profit organizations. The program will run until March 2024.