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Creating IT Futures

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Adult Education, Children & Youth, Education, Job Training, Youth Development - Business

Mission: The IT industry needs more workers — and more workers need more opportunities. As the leading charity of CompTIA, the world’s largest IT industry association, Creating IT Futures is taking on this workforce challenge through research, program development and partnering. We create on-ramps for more people to prepare for, secure and succeed in IT careers. We particularly encourage an IT path for populations that traditionally have been under-represented in the information technology workforce, such as women and ethnic minorities.

Results: Our flagship program, IT-Ready Technical Support, launched in 2012 in Minnesota and Ohio. In Minnesota alone, more than 60 employers have signed on to hire IT-Ready graduates and all of the employers that signed on in 2012 are still hiring our graduates today. Since IT-Ready began, more than 1,500 students have graduated and more than 80% go on to full-time IT jobs. In 2015, we expanded the program nationwide and currently have classes operating in several cities.

Target demographics: under-represented populations

Geographic areas served: The United States

Programs: providing training and certification to under-represented populations in the IT workforce.

Community Stories

75 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started training with the Creating IT Futures ITReady program in the winter of 2015. Before I was accepted into the program I was bouncing around from dead end jobs for 10 years and could not get a good stable 40 hour a week job. The ITReady program seemed to good to be true but with some pressure from my girlfriend I applied and made it. Since completing the program and getting my A+ certification I have been doing great. They got me a paid internship and paid for my training and certs for my Network +, Security + and Server +. I now have a great career in IT working with a local government and constantly going up. Usually they say if something is too good to be true, in this case that does not apply. This program really changes lives and the fact that it is free is amazing. I will be a lifetime donor to this organization.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

It has been almost a year since my last review.

During the time that has passed, I have seen numerous students simply needing an opportunity to begin a career in IT transition to roles they could only hope for prior to applying to Creating IT Futures' IT-Ready program.

Of course, these students' success stories need employers willing to provide them with an opportunity and seeing many of them reconsider their recruiting practices and hiring requirements for entry-level roles within the industry is equally wonderful.

IT-Ready provides job seekers, employers, as well as community-based organizations with a solution to their IT needs and is quickly becoming a known-entity in the greater Chicago area because of its quick successes!

Previous Stories
1

Advisor

Rating: 5

I have the privilege of being a part of this wonderful organization that is truly devoted to its students both in and out of the classroom.

Whether it is supporting students in IT-Ready or those at colleges and universities with large percentages of underrepresented students, creating on-ramps for those who have never had opportunities to pursue upwardly-mobile and family-sustaining careers inspires all of us to do all we can to begin narrowing the skills gap within the industry.

1 iloveyou

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I was lucky enough to be part of Creating IT Futures when we launched the first IT-Ready class in MSP in Spring 2012. Over 7 years later, I can't believe how much it has grown, to more than a half dozen cities and to include a population of Wounded Warriors thanks to the partnership with Cognizant. My colleagues who work with this program have the students in mind and are singularly focused on doing everything they can to facilitate our graduates receiving their first job in the IT field. I'm continually awed and impressed by what our staff and students together achieve.

Previous Stories

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The individuals at Creating IT Futures have their hearts and heads in the right place. They care much more about BEING effective than SEEMING effective. That's why the lives they touch are changed for the better. Definitely an organization you can feel good supporting.

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1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

am proud to say I work for Creating IT Futures and am honored to be a part of a great team with professionals that I can learn from and that they will push me to take on new and challenging opportunities.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I became involved with Creating IT Futures while searching for a new member of our Tech Support team. They prepare candidates with both the technical and soft skills candidates need to get their next job. As an employer I was invited to participate in mock interviews, resumes and discuss networking opportunities, become part of the community. I've hired one graduate and look to the organization for other candidates for myself and other companies I know who may be hiring. In a tight job market it can be difficult to stand out for candidates as well as vet the overall qualities of a potential employee - Creating IT Futures takes care of both.

1 Santiago D.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I came across the Creating IT Futures course on Indeed.com, and applied to be in their first ever Phoenix area class. I was always interested in computers and technology, but I hadn't considered it as a career pathway prior to this. After completing the 2 months, and getting my A+ certification, I felt a lot more knowledgeable and confident about general computer upkeep, and I look forward to working in this field. I recommend this opportunity to anyone who wishes to learn more about the world of information technology as a career pathway.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Creating IT Futures is an excellent organization that pays attention to the needs of the student and to business resulting in a congruency between the stakeholder's objectives. That is a refreshing characteristic in an education program as businesses are linked with the next ready to work employee. I am consistently impressed with the program and staff here in Phoenix.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I joined Creating IT Futures on a training program as a fellow, this was a perfect match for me because I run a similar project in Uganda, later on, I realized that my project has done a good job to introduce tech to rural students but in the end has left them with no clear career path. Creating IT Futures has given me the opportunity to learn from industry experts and hear stories of impacts from their graduates who get both skills and job search support from Creating IT Futures team, this is now shaping how we shall deliver our tech projects in Uganda with effect from 2020.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Creating IT Futures is a Great program. It opened many doors for me immediately upon graduation. I had the honor and pleasure of meeting and learning with individuals who had a variety of skill-sets and life experiences.

The networking and employment preparation helped me engage with employers in a prepared manner. Understanding the importance of culture fits and developing much needed soft-skills was the tipping point when negotiating/navigating offers.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Creating IT Futures is truly changing folks lives for the better with the work they are doing. From the efforts of Tech Girlz empowering young adults to take a step into a STEM career, to IT Ready, helping adults take the first, or next, step into their IT careers Creating IT Future and their collection of programs is really making a difference in the economic well being of individuals and families.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I can't describe how grateful I am to this course. I was accepted and from day one I knew that the teacher, advisors, and manager cared deeply about our success. We were given the opportunity to meet future employers, received help with our resumes, had mock interviews, recruiters meeting us to help with employment, and so much more. The course is fast paced and anyone looking to get their foot in the door in IT, there is no better opportunity than this. Thanks to this company I was able to secure a career in IT within a month of graduation and get hands on experience I couldn't have gotten by myself with self-study.

1 Celine D.

Advisor

Rating: 5

I have been working with Creating IT Futures to help them create and distribute materials like their book and podcasts. They have been consistently dedicated to creating accessible tools, and are passionate about developing the best resources to support young people interested in tech careers. My work with their podcast program has given me the privilege of recording and listening to many interviews with Charles Eaton, the CEO. His in-depth knowledge of the challenges Creating IT Futures attempts to mitigate, and his creativity in addressing them never ceases to amaze me. It is a pleasure to help Creating IT Futures create!

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Creating IT Futures is doing wonderful work to support and build the talent pipeline for professionals in IT!

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Creating IT Futures has a huge impact on the lives of the people it serves. I have personally seen the effect on individuals and families. The mission of helping people who lack access gain the tools they need to be successful in the IT industry was what inspired me to get more involved - a decision that I have never regretted.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I've worked for Creating IT Futures for 4 years. In that time, we've help hundreds of unemployed, underemployed, and/or underrepresented individuals kick start their careers in IT. Having worked in workforce development for 10 years, this program is far and away the best IT training program that I've seen, and our reach only continues to expand. Since I've started, we've expanded our permanent presence to Portland and Charlotte, and we're planning to expand further to Phoenix, San Antonio, San Diego, and Chicago in 2019.

Previous Stories
1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The Creating IT Futures Foundation has helped many IT students get on track for an excellent career in IT.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Staffer here. I've been a member of the CITF team for the past five years and am still blown away by our students and our team. We take our mission very seriously and have grown tremendously in the past few years. Still, our number one priority remains our students and making sure we are providing best-in-class training and quality career preparation programs. It's a privilege to witness our students achieve their personal goals and create lasting positive results. I'm proud of the work we do and the integrity of our team and executive staff. I look forward to our continued growth and ability to help more people.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I helped out in class and got to meet this great graduate, Isiah Rafos. He had a medical discharge from the military and his dream of serving was crushed with his injury. He found IT-Ready and within a few months had a new job and career. https://www.creatingitfutures.org/resources/blog/creating-it-futures/2018/10/10/lighting-a-fire-under-a-new-career

1 Chad G.1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

It’s been extremely influential watching students go through the program. There are countless life changing story these students share. Reflecting the amount of value given to students for new opportunities. I love what IT Ready is doing, keep booming!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Creating IT Futures does great work! They give insightful information to employers so that they can hire more people in need of a job. See the IT-Ready employer breakfast they held earlier this month: https://www.creatingitfutures.org/resources/blog/creating-it-futures/2018/10/15/keep-the-diverse-in-it

Previous Stories

Donor

Rating: 5

I attended the graduation of IT-Ready's first class of students in Charlotte. More than 800 people applied for the 8-week tech training program. Creating IT Futures selected 175 for in-person interviews and testing. A lucky 26 were offered spots in the program, and with the strict attendance policy enforced for the class, 23 made it to graduation. Eighteen of the 23 had earned their CompTIA A+ certification by their graduation, and the other five were expected to pass their certification shortly.

Graduate James Imes said he knew if he could get into the class, his life would change. “I love to read, learn and teach. Sometimes I would drive 50 miles to class and arrive with E on my gas tank, because I know if I could get here, I would be alright. This class became my support system,” said Imes.

Graduate Barbara Stephens recognized IT-Ready as a “once in a lifetime opportunity that could catapult her to the next level.”

“On the first day of class, I saw the other students as competition. Now I see us as a family and a community,” said graduate William Tolliver. “We all made these bonds in class and we’ll carry them with us forever.”

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

My company has done work with Creating IT Futures, and I've heard so many wonderful success stories from graduates of the programs. CITF does a great job reaching people who are underemployed and helping them reach their potential. It's inspiring to see how lives are being changed!

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I've worked for a number of non-profits over the years, and all of them had something to be said for their mission. But none are as driven as Creating IT Futures. Bringing IT careers to people changes individual lives, families, and communities. Creating IT Futures is expanding in order to make sure that worthy individuals in more cities can find their stride and get the knowledge and skills they need to succeed. Just read some of the success stories on this website. These are just a fraction of the hundreds of people that Creating IT Futures have transformed.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Great organization, they not only helped financially, they provided the structure and support needed to get into and make progress in the IT field.

They made available to us so many resources and still continue to offer support even after we were done with the program.


Thanks so much CITF, your efforts are much appreciated.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started training with the Creating IT Futures ITReady program in the winter of 2015. Before I was accepted into the program I was bouncing around from dead end jobs for 10 years and could not get a good stable 40 hour a week job. The ITReady program seemed to good to be true but with some pressure from my girlfriend I applied and made it. Since completing the program and getting my A+ certification I have been doing great. They got me a paid internship and paid for my training and certs for my Network +, Security + and Server +. I now have a great career in IT working with a local government and constantly going up. Usually they say if something is too good to be true, in this case that does not apply. This program really changes lives and the fact that it is free is amazing. I will be a lifetime donor to this organization.

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

CreatingitFutures help me to find a passion in IT I never knew I had. They helped my find a career in IT that has been rewarding both financially and personally. It is hard to think of where I was a year and a half ago before starting the program.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I've had the pleasure of working with dozens of graduates of this nonprofit's signature IT-Ready tech career training program, and lives literally are being changed for the better because of it. Folks who have been chronically under- or unemployed for years, through no fault of their own, are learning IT skills that allow them to secure positions that pay family-sustaining wages and offer the potential for advancement.

Donor

Rating: 5

I attended the most recent IT-Ready Minneapolis / St. Paul graduation (Edina class, Summer 2017), hosted by Creating IT Futures. By the time of graduation, 5 out of the 15 students had already passed their CompTIA A+ exam. The remaining students were set to test over the following week.

Graduate and so-called "computer nerd" and gamer Hunter Geidl said the program "gave me a chance to expand on that interest and gain knowledge through everyone involved with the program. It brought us all here to learn together, grow together, and connect together.”

Graduate Tounang Her echoed Geidl’s sentiments when he said, "I fed off the enthusiasm, hunger to learn, and determination to finish this program from my classmates. They helped create a positive environment.”

Daniel Heu said to his fellow graduates, “This gives us a sense of validation. We all had the capabilities to finish this program. I believe that everyone here is going to be the next great CompTIA A+ certified technician.”

Donor

Rating: 5

This summer, SLO County Office of Education, SLO Partners and Creating IT Futures embarked on a new career training and apprenticeship program to grow the tech workforce in the greater San Luis Obispo area of California.

With hundreds of applicants for 50 spots in the program, the three partners first launched two classes of Creating IT Futures’ IT-Ready career program. Each class trained toward CompTIA A+ certification. Plus, these two classes were underwritten by the San Luis Obispo County Office of Education, so that each student received a stipend of $70 a day – a first for any IT-Ready program. The SLO County Office of Education was awarded funding through the California Apprenticeship Initiative.

After eight weeks of training, the first cohort graduated in September. Seventy percent of the students moved forward into the paid apprenticeship part of the program, with about half learning IT networking and security and the other half learning about software testing for six weeks. The apprentices then will begin a year of salaried, on-the-job training with local employers. The other 30 percent of the students were introduced to local employers for immediate job openings.

During the graduation, Amy Kardel, president and co-founder of Clever Ducks, a managed IT services provider based in San Luis Obispo, and chair of CompTIA, told the students, “If there’s a will, there’s a way. This industry allows you to learn every day. Welcome to our tech community.”

Graduate Madeline Gorge, who’s moving onto the networking and security apprenticeship track, remarked, “This class could have become a competitive environment, but instead we helped each other get better.”

Graduate Elissa Murray, who’s moving along to the same track as Gorge, echoed her sentiments, “We all pitched in to make us successful.”

Several students remarked on how inspiring and dedicated their teachers were. “I’ve had a blast. I didn’t realize how fun education can be,” said graduate and future apprentice Kevin Tran.

Graduate Justin Rucker summed up the program as “this is like the golden ticket.”

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I met Vanessa Dalkha last year in IT-Ready, when she looked to return to the workforce as her daughter approached the end of 4th grade. After her IT-Ready graduation and getting her CompTIA A+ certification, she gained a job as an IT specialist with Hennepin County, the county government for Minneapolis. She tole me, “IT-Ready gave me the knowledge and confidence I needed to start a career that I hope will last for many years to come.”

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I worked with Creating IT Futures on its IT-Ready program and one of the students, John Amakye, graduated two years also and since then his career has flourished. Now an application programmer with the City of Minneapolis, John recently earned his 10th tech certification across a variety of tech fields including networking, security and software development. He told me, “Being in IT has made me financially independent and allowed me to carve a pathway for myself that is professionally rewarding. I owe quite a bit of this
to IT-Ready.”

Volunteer

Rating: 5

One of the students I worked with at Creating IT Futures recently told me her story of training with IT-Ready. Rashmi Bhattarai looked online for affordable IT programs where she could get that experience, and landed on IT-Ready, a free eight-week program that helps people get started in IT, earn entry-level technology certifications and find jobs right away.

“I felt like it was too good to be true,” she said. “I was really skeptical about having a job at the end of an eight-week course, and I was a little bit skeptical of the program. Eight weeks to learn CompTIA A+ material and two exams you have to pass? I don’t think so!”

Rashmi filled out an application, got an acceptance letter in the mail and was suddenly immersed in technology. She was studying with 25 other students, who quickly grew into a supportive group.

“IT-Ready created such a positive environment for the students to come in and learn and succeed that we wanted to help each other, no matter what level we were in,” she said.

Graduating from IT-Ready and passing the CompTIA A+ exam put Rashmi exactly where she wanted to be. “Now I have a paper that says I’m an IT technician, and now I can put this on my resume and I can move forward,” she said.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am so proud to be associated with this organization. From inspiring our nation's youth to dream of a career in technology, to empowering adults with the training and tools they need to land fulfilling tech jobs, CITF is truly making a difference. I had the great honor of speaking at the graduation ceremonies of the Twin Cities first all women CITF class and was so moved by how their experience with CITF was transforming their lives. I met women who were homeless, some out of work for years, others finally pursuing their interest in tech. These women learned more than computer skills, and found more than a job. They learned a lot about themselves, and found their inner strength and confidence to handle and conquer any challenge and opportunity that came their way moving forward.
Every single individual on the the CITF team is exceptional. They are committed to their work and passionate about their mission. Technology is now driving virtually every industry It is the industry that quite possibly is having the greatest impact on our economy and society. The CITF team is working hard towards building a stronger and more diverse 21st Century technology workforce, helping the at risk and under-served realize lucrative careers - and experience the satisfaction and pride of being extremely productive members of society. I cannot say enough about all the good CITF is doing. Please considering donating today, offering internships to graduates of the IT Ready program or volunteering as a speaker. And make sure to let others know about the great work Creating IT Futures is doing.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I've been supporting Creating IT Futures for many years, and every year brings even more great stories and real world support. The combination of CompTIA, employer, and municipal support makes CITF a force to be reckoned with, and the innovation that's added on top makes for exciting times! The CEO really is a visionary, and he's built a team with a wide array of talents and focused passion for what they do.

Benjamin Y.

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Creating It Futures Foundation has given me more than anything I've ever asked for. This program has opened the door for me and has prepared me for not only a job but a exciting career in Information Technology. The program itself was short (only 8 weeks) but during those 8 weeks I learned more about myself than any other type of schooling that I have been in before. The staff from top to bottom are genuinely interested in you as a person and they will give you the best advice possible. It is an amazing feeling to have been a part of this organization and I am confident that anyone who puts in 100% will only benefit from such a well organized program. Thank YOU Creating IT Future Foundation!

Advisor

Rating: 5

As a consultant, I have been involved in projects for the Creating IT Futures Foundation and its predecessor organization for more than a decade. So, I personally can vouch for the group's clarity of focus and dedication to progress. One need not look far or deep to see evidence of Creating IT Futures' impact. Just look at the faces of the people they help. See the energy unleashed. See the sparkle of success in the eyes of people with a new outlook on their careers.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The Chicago Public Schools (CPS) has worked with Creating IT Futures Foundation (CIFF) for the past two years and it was truly a privilege. In the last two years, CIFF has created hundreds of IT experiences and work-based learning opportunities to youth interested in STEM. They started an internship program for high school students from the ground up and also laid the groundwork for a dynamic mentor program. The CIFF team went above and beyond to connect CPS to the greater STEM community and supported our efforts to grow our STEM program. They are very passionate, professional and dedicated to bringing meaningful work to the table and of course, creating a lasting impact for our youth and the City of Chicago.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The IT Ready program has become our pipeline for new employees within our Service Desk or Desktop Support teams. We have employed 12 interns and have offered full-time employment to almost all of them. These candidates are appealing because in addition to arriving with a good base of technical knowledge; they have also been trained on soft skills and accountability. They are engaged, reliable and all have the desire to learn and grow within our organization. It's been a great partnership for us. - Becky Ryan, HealthPartners

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I had the honor to attend a graduation in MN for Creating IT Futures. CITF helped this class graduate passing various IT certification exams and jump start their career in tech. This class varied from those who had possibly taken the wrong career path to those simply struggling to find work and get out of their own predicament. At graduation, the class was emotional to have made it to graduation and grateful for the staff and their classmates that pushed them along the way. It was inspiring to hear about these 'students' hardships and struggles and how CITF, this program that sounded 'to good to be true', has given them hope and encouragement. I left encouraged not only by the students but also by the CITF staff that had worked tirelessly to help these students pass tests, find jobs and succeed in this demanding field all while creating an optimistic and nurturing atmosphere.