June 3rd marks the official launch of the Elevate Talent Initiative. With 70,000 open job positions in the tech and innovation industry across the GTHA, the opportunities are endless. However, building a career in the technology and innovation sectors often requires specific skill training, credentials, and other resources that are not accessible for many in underrepresented communities. The Elevate Talent 90-day workforce development program gives participants access to free skills training and micro-credentials to kickstart a career in tech.
“We know there are communities out there who see opportunities in tech, but continue to be excluded. At Elevate, our mission has always been to unite Canada’s innovators to solve society’s greatest challenges and this includes bridging talent gaps by fostering an ecosystem that is accessible for everyone.”—Karim Rahemtulla, Managing Director at Elevate
Recognizing the need, Elevate began planning the initiative. We, at LatAm Startups, knew we could add value by sharing our resources and experience towards the planning and creation of programming. Having been run for a long time by dedicated volunteers, LatAm Startups provided training and helped volunteers gain skills to project them into their careers. Including LatAm Startups, Elevate Talent has been designed collaboratively in partnership with other community organizations, national and regional companies in the tech and innovation sectors and learning institutions.
The initiative is a 90-day rapid workforce development program funded by the Government of Canada through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario and powered by Elevate. It equips professionals with the skills and credentials they need to build thriving careers in the technology and innovation sectors. It’s designed specifically to break down the barriers in tech for underrepresented communities including Black, Indigenous, People of Colour, 2SLGBTQ+, and Francophone professionals. The program provides, for example, culturally sensitive skills training, micro-credentialing programs all designed with underrepresented communities at the centre.
A past program participant, Sehar Panjwani, shared that “Elevate Talent helped me with the tools that I didn’t even know that I needed to find success in a tech job and any industry. Now there is possibility, whereas before there was doubt and fear.” Other past program participants reflected these thoughts, including Andrae Bell, quoting “Elevate Talent helped with my learning journey by offering a huge amount of support. Tech was a completely new world for me. The guidance offered helped ease that transition.”
As said by Karim Rahemtulla, the Managing Director at Elevate, “Elevate Talent, designed in partnership with community and corporate leaders, aims to foster equity and inclusion in our tech sector and create meaningful employment for underrepresented communities through holistic workforce development programs.”
The importance of equity-informed employment support is a clear need in our communities and Elevate Talent aims to create a level playing field for underrepresented communities in the tech sector and LatAm Startups is more than excited to be a part of this initiative.
If you want to learn more or participate in The Elevate Talent Initiative, visit elevatetalent.ca