Do you want to work with IT? Look for a paid apprenticeship

When Cartomu Kabba graduated from high school last year, instead of continuing her education or applying for a job, she was given a paid apprenticeship to combine the best of both worlds. “I felt this was a good path because I was more interested in learning and working at the same time as I felt it would be more effective for me,” Kabba said.

The 19-year-old Bronx resident heard about paid apprenticeships from Code Nation, a program that teaches people to code. She searched through Multivers, a platform that matches apprentices with 12- to 18-month opportunities among their 300 clients, who often offer salaries between $ 50,000 and $ 70,000 a year. Kabba created a profile and was matched with insurance company Chubb.

She started her 12-month apprenticeship last March on a remote team working at Blink, a startup within Chubb, and has focused on bringing insurance to consumers in a digital channel.

“I get a dual learning experience on the technical side of using data and the business side on how a business grows from the very beginning,” Kabba said. “I want to learn how to create a database from scratch instead of just understanding the analytics,”

Cartomu, an apprentice, works at Multiverse's office at WeWork
Cartomu Kabba immediately started working for the insurance company Chubb without having to have a university degree.
Stefano Giovannini

Although apprenticeships are often associated with skilled professions, they are now popping up for that kind of clerical job. According to US Department of Labor, apprenticeships combine on-the-job training with instruction to prepare workers for highly qualified careers, are typically paid, and involve a structured training plan with an intention to master specific skills.

Kabba’s days alternate between working on assignments and learning a skill for another project like Python or Microsoft Azure, along with attending monthly Multiverse boot camp sessions. The bootcamps are taught by Multiverse coaches – she has already learned Excel, SQL, Power Bi, Python and the basics of data analysis. On a monthly basis, Kabba meets with his Multiverse coach to review goals that need to be focused on to improve technical skills like Python and soft skills like engagement.

Cartomu, an apprentice, works at Multiverse's office at WeWork.
Cartomu Kabba has learned a wealth of important computer science skills such as Python and Power Bi during his paid apprenticeship.
Stefano Giovannini

“I think the apprenticeship will definitely help pave the way for a future full-time job, because I have real-life experience, and that’s always very important in a workplace, especially in a field like data, where change is very rapid, “she said.

Multiverse agrees: Most apprentices (87 percent) stay at their companies full-time after graduation, and many are offered the apprenticeship on that basis.

Phyllis Mooney, CEO of Career Services at Pace University, said these hands-on learning and work opportunities typically provide phenomenal insights into a company’s culture, management preparation, and unmatched networking opportunities.

Cartomu, an apprentice, works at Multiverse's office at WeWork.
Cartomu Kabba says her paid apprenticeship supported by Multiverse will eventually lead to “a future full-time job.”
Stefano Giovannini

“Many employers use these programs to pipeline full-time talent. Relevant work experience is also relevant to your resume if you move on from the host employer. Learning is constant, as is feedback,” Mooney said.

It’s a win-win, according to Gorick Ng, Harvard’s career counselor and author “The Unspoken Rules” (Harvard Business Review Press). “Apprenticeships are internships with the promise of mentorship, salary and learning. That’s a lot! For employers, apprenticeships are a great way to build your leadership, not to mention a loyal workforce. “

Phyllis Mooney, CEO of Career Services at Pace University
Phyllis Mooney, CEO of Career Services at Pace University, argues that employers use apprenticeships as a “pipeline” to develop talent.
Stefano Giovannini

Apprentices can reap several additional benefits in addition to salary and ongoing learning and work aspects. Ng said: “Financial capital – money – is not the only thing you can get from an apprenticeship (or really any work experience). This is also your chance to build your human capital (what you know and can do), social capital (who you know) and reputation capital (who knows you and for what). “

Access to apprenticeships is not limited to adults of university age. After working in retail for 10 years, 30-year-old Steven Hubbard had aimed for an IT career, but there’s the annoying catch-22: You can not get a job without experience, and you can not get experience without a job.

In 2015, he applied for a full-time position Maxx potential, a consulting firm that offers apprenticeships in technology. Apprentices are assigned a highly skilled mentor, a peer peer, a development coach, and they have access to network with other apprentices through meetings and study groups as hangouts for crypto.

By acquiring new skills and learning about the cloud, databases, programming, securities and how domain name systems work, all the while being paid, Hubbard felt ready to handle job interviews when he left Maxx in 2017.

“They are [employers are] says, ‘Tell me what you would do in this situation.’ Well, I can tell you what I actually did. “

“Without Maxx Potential and that support network and learning system, I would not have been able to move on to what I am doing now, otherwise it would have been incredibly difficult,” Hubbard said.

Since completing his apprenticeship, he was given full-time roles as a front-end web developer and solution architect, where he almost doubled his salary every time he got a new job. Now the resident of Richmond, Va., Is employed as a business architect for Cockroach Labs, a Chelsea-based company that helps organizations manage their data.

Kimberly Mahan, founder and partner of Maxx Potential, said most apprenticeships last about 14 months, during which time apprentices advance to higher levels in quality assurance and testing, application maintenance and support, information security, software development and data management and reporting.

“We work like any other consulting firm. We are building the smaller league – a farm feeding system for senior consulting firms,” ​​Mahan said. “We create an environment where people always learn. Think about it before you sign [student] loan securities.

We can give you experience so you can get in – and most employers have tuition reimbursement programs so you can get your degree later. What you need to get in the door more than anything else is experience in the real world. “


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