The Northern Wyoming Technical Institute is Coming to Buffalo

Friday, August 11, 2017

In Wyoming, we have incredible assets, including people who are driven, work hard and are looking for new opportunities. Those opportunities are being created, while also diversifying our economy, through the creation of the new Northern Wyoming Technical Institute (NWTI). In a joint project between Interapt and community groups led by Dave Simonsen, a WEDA board member, the NWTI will train people to become coders.

Training for Tomorrow

Coding is the job of today and the career of the future. Our world is moving online and coders are needed to build the website, create the software, and build the technology of the future. For Wyoming to capture some of this market share, we need talented coders. The challenge has been, how do you attract companies without skilled workers and how do you train those interested in becoming coders? With Interapt, we have the solution.

Northern Wyoming Technical Institute

The Northern Wyoming Technical Institute will be located in the Buffalo Civic Center and offer a robust training program for coders. Those who have limited coding experience or no coding experience can apply. This is an intensive program and ideal for those with an engineering or technical background that can dive in and become part of this immersive learning experience.

For six months, students will attend classes from 8 to 5pm, five days a week. There will be homework that must be completed at night, and on the weekends, along with various team projects. The first four months will involve intensive classroom study with the last two months including an apprenticeship where students can test out their new skills on real projects, while still being guided and mentored by instructors.

Since this is essentially a fulltime job, money is being raised to provide a stipend to students who initially go through the program. This would help to offset the cost of training while also pay for some basic living expenses.

A Job After Graduation

For students, this is an incredible opportunity to gain skills that can lead to a high paying job. Upon graduation, students who meet their hiring requirements, will be offered a position with Interapt, allowing for a smooth and immediate transition from education to employment. Local employers are also looking to hire coders so those who would like to apply elsewhere, certainly can.

As a coder, it is possible to start out making at least $40,000 a year and more experienced coders can make upwards of $100,000. This position allows for significant upward mobility, making it a career to build a life on, rather than just a job.

How the NWTI Came to Be

This project came out of NEW Growth Alliance and could be expanded throughout the state if it goes well in Buffalo.

Dave Simonsen heard the CEO of Interapt, Ankur Gopal, speak at the Mid-America Economic Development Conference. Mr. Gopal was living in Silicon Valley but decided to start a company to train coders in his home state of Kentucky. Initially designed to create a training program for laid off coal minors, with the support of the Governor, the program took off and graduates successfully entered the workforce. With Wyoming looking to create a more diverse economy, those same opportunities exist here.

Apply to Join the First Class

There are fifty spots available in the first class, which should begin sometime this fall. For information on how to apply, email Dave Simonsen at dave@kbjeconomicdevelopment.com.

Upon graduation, students will be offered a position with Interapt who will be expanding in Buffalo. Students will also receive college credit through NW Community College, making it possible to continue on with their education.

Participate as a Community Member

Those who are interested in supporting the Northern Wyoming Technical Institute can do so by making a financial contribution, sponsoring a student, offering an apprenticeship or volunteering.  

Business to business partnerships are welcome, so if a business has a need for a trained coder and would like to sponsor someone through the training, they can do so.

There will also be several jobs that need to be filled by local people as the training program is launched.

Learn More

To find out more about the NWTI, contact Dave Simonsen at dave@kbjeconomicdevelopment.com.

 

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