Ann Arbor SPARK Graduates 26 from Inaugural Shifting Code
ANN ARBOR, Mich., May 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Ann Arbor SPARK’s first Shifting Code cohort will graduate from the program on Wednesday, May 16, in a ceremony at SPARK Central. The 26 graduates successfully completed the Shifting Code program, a program designed and administered by Ann Arbor SPARK and funded by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) to meet regional demand for software developers.
Of the Shifting Code graduates, 65 percent have already found employment using their new software skills. Shifting Code graduates were hired by a range of companies, including start-up company Commerce Guys, second stage firm SRT Solutions, and global automotive manufacturer Ford Motor Company.
“The response to Shifting Code, both in terms of interest from job-seekers and employers, affirmed that this type of high tech skills development is an important economic development asset for our region,” said Paul Krutko, president and CEO of Ann Arbor SPARK. “Shifting Code is a concrete example of how Ann Arbor SPARK is fulfilling its mission to drive economic opportunity in the region: Working with employers to identify a need and creating a program to address it eliminates a barrier to business growth.”
Shifting Code’s curriculum was based on the input of a core group of employers, and consisted of learning modules of specific coding languages. The modules were developed for team-based learning over a 12-week period, and delivered via hybrid instructional model that included face-to-face instruction and online support.
Twenty companies participated in Shifting Code, and the program had support from regional colleges and universities, MEDC and Washtenaw County Michigan Works.
With continued funding from the MEDC, the next Ann Arbor Shifting Code cohort will start September 2012 and focus on .NET., a software framework developed by Microsoft. Several employers are already working with Ann Arbor SPARK and its partners to develop the curriculum.
ABOUT ANN ARBOR SPARK
Ann Arbor SPARK, a non-profit organization, is advancing the region by encouraging and supporting business acceleration, attraction and retention. The organization identifies and meets the needs of business at every stage, from start-ups to large organizations. Ann Arbor SPARK collaborates with business, academic, government, and community investor partners including the University of Michigan, Eastern Michigan University, Washtenaw Community College, Washtenaw County, Washtenaw County Michigan Works Agency, the City of Ann Arbor, Bank of Ann Arbor and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. For more information, please call (734) 761-9317 or visit www.AnnArborUSA.org.
SOURCE Ann Arbor SPARK