Coding for Veterans: Program that retrains veterans for IT jobs hopes for more Indigenous participants – New Brunswick
A program that offers veterans an opportunity to retrain after military service hopes to recruit more Indigenous candidates interested in learning to code.
Jeff Musson, the executive director of Coding for Veterans, pitched a tent in front of a Moncton legion on Thursday, trying to spread the word.
“With the (National) Day of Truth and Reconciliation, we really want to raise awareness among Indigenous people who have served in the Armed Forces, not only to highlight their service to Canada, but also their opportunity to transition into employment in the sector. of technology,” he said.
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Former or serving members of the Armed Forces accepted into the program are trained as software developers and cybersecurity professionals, for which there is a critical shortage in Canada, according to Musson.
“In Canada, more than 147,000 IT jobs are expected to remain unfilled and these are good, well-paying jobs,” he explained.
Musson, who also owns a computer company, started Coding for Veterans two and a half years ago. So far about 200 Canadian veterans have graduated, but less than 10 are from Indigenous communities and he would like to see those numbers increase.
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“It’s a combination of power that employers look for in their workforce because it contributes to diversity and culture within companies,” he said.
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Bill Ridley-Williams, who served in the military in the 1980s, is currently enrolled in the program. He said there are Indigenous IT companies across the country trying to expand into the technology sector.
“(They) try to develop their footprint in this environment. Companies try to employ indigenous trained people if they can get training,” he said.
All training is done online. Veterans who have served at least six years will have their tuition fully paid through the Veterans Affairs Canada Education and Training Benefit.
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