Nancy Hammervik on Technologist Talk

How CompTIA Tech Career Academy Fills Tech Jobs Faster by Disrupting the Traditional Education Track

By R.C. Dirkes

Is pursuing a typical technical education – first high school STEM, next college computer science, then off to the workforce – the best way to fill hundreds of thousands of technology positions available in today’s job market?

Not if you want to enable people– from aspiring students to eager career changers – to launch their careers quickly, says Nancy Hammervik, CEO of the CompTIA Tech Career Academy, during a recent episode of Creating IT Futures’ award-winning Technologist Talk program.

“Technology is really the lifeblood of any business right now,” Hammervik tells CompTIA Tech’s Lisa Fasold during the podcast conversation. “Any industry, any business is made more efficient, more effective, more competitive through technology. In order for any market sector to grow and to advance, they need technologists driving them, and the gap is widening faster and faster.”


Why Quickly Filling Open IT Positions is a Business Imperative for the U.S. Economy

“When I started my career in tech, the US was top of the list in the number of innovative technology companies,” says Hammervik. “…Just being very forward-thinking and proactive, and innovative, and progressive with tech. And we dropped way down on that list… mostly it's because we don't have the people to fill these positions.”

She also believes swiftly populating IT jobs with tech-savvy people is important because of escalating cybersecurity threats:

“If every business now – from large down to small – is leveraging technology, cybersecurity is a really important part of it. And we don't have enough people that are safeguarding and minimizing risk in the technology infrastructure. So that also can be crippling. We’re seeing all the ransomware attacks, and all the breaches, and what that means for companies and local economies. We have governments being breached and hacked.”

CompTIA Tech’s IT-Ready Technical Support program is responding to this demand for skilled tech workers, Hammervik explains, with online courses in more than 35 states, with more being added in coming months.

IT-Ready offers “either an 8-week program or a 16-week program. Eight weeks, you're going full time. It's like making a commitment to a job nine to four with your hour lunch break, working toward [CompTIA’s] A+ certification,” she elaborates. “…or 16 weeks where you go for a half-day, same course content. We're also teaching you some of the soft skills and the business acumen you need to be successful in your first job or role in tech.”

“Most [graduating] students will be ready for a help desk job, which is just a wonderful way to start out in an organization,” she adds. “And once you're in that job and working in the IT department, you can continue to learn and grow your career.”


IT-Ready Rapidly Reskills Workers & Helps Them Land Tech Jobs as an Alternative to Typical Tech Ed

Hammervik says she is passionate about providing alternative IT training to young students and adult career changers because her son was frustrated by the narrow options during his educational experience.

“My son was one of those in the middle that got lost with the type of teaching that they offered and the learning path that they offered,” recounts Hammervik. “My son was saying, ‘I don't know what I want to do yet. …and I don't want to waste my parent's money or my time. I want to get out and work and figure out what I want to do.’"

She says IT-Ready is an option for students at any age or stage in launching a new career who feel “college is just so overwhelming and daunting, either economically or for their family. They might have to stay home, and they might have to work.”

“I want them to know there's another path to a really lucrative career,” she stresses. “There is no entry-level job in tech that you need a four-year college degree.”

Are you -- or someone you know -- considering changing careers? Consider launching a technology career with CompTIA Tech. 2021 classes are open for applications. Apply here.

Meantime, hear the rest of the conversation between Nancy Hammervik and Lisa Fasold here: Episode 45 – Talking CompTIA Tech: How IT-Ready Fills Tech Jobs Faster by Disrupting the Traditional Education Track.


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