Howard Community College and AT＆T Working Together to Offer College’s First IT Apprenticeship
Columbia, MD – Howard Community College and AT&T are working together to offer the college’s first Information Technology (IT) apprenticeship program that will culminate in academic credits and industry certifications. During National Apprenticeship Week, Howard Community College (HCC) and AT&T will showcase this brand-new program at a November 13 event.
The new program, named AT&T Catapult, provides students with a career path into the IT profession while allowing them to earn credentials in a high-demand field. Students selected as paid apprentices will earn while they learn in one of three occupational tracks at AT&T: 1) IT Field Support Specialist; 2) Network Field Support Specialist; and 3) Information Systems Security Specialist. The program includes coursework at HCC and hands-on experience at AT&T’s Global Public Sector office in Columbia.
“This apprenticeship offers a one-of-a-kind opportunity for students interested in pursuing IT careers to gain valuable work experience under the mentorship of leading professionals in the field,” stated Knute Olson, client executive associate vice president, AT&T Global Public Sector.
HCC announced this apprenticeship in early October to students and community members. In approximately two weeks, HCC received more than 100 applications for the 24 apprenticeships with AT&T. This high demand aligns with the existing high need for qualified IT professionals. Cybersecurity, specifically, is in extreme demand, with 3.5 million unfilled positions expected in the field globally by 2021 (Source: https://cybersecurityventures.com/jobs/).
“With a national and statewide shortfall of IT professionals, AT&T Catapult allows Howard Community College students to prepare for careers in a highly sought-after, well-compensated field,” said Dr. Jean Svacina, vice president of academic affairs at HCC. “We are grateful to AT&T for helping us provide this outstanding opportunity to students and we look forward to it helping to further the HCC mission of providing pathways to success.”
After AT&T completes its hiring of the inaugural class of 24 apprentices, those students will start courses in January. The program can take students approximately 18 months to complete. Upon successful completion of the paid apprenticeship program, students will have earned 18–24 credits, and N+ and S+ industry certification. They can also obtain a government security clearance if eligible. As part of the program agreement, apprentices will be contracted for full-time employment in their chosen occupational track at AT&T for a minimum of two years.The IT apprenticeship marks the third apprenticeship available at HCC, joining heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and refrigeration, and construction management. For more information about all apprenticeships at Howard Community College, contact firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit howardcc.edu/apprenticeships.