Cortex, Tech Nonprofit Launch Program to Train Underrepresented Groups in Cybersecurity

Per Scholas, a nonprofit that provides tuition-free technology skills training with a focus on educating individuals from underrepresented groups, has announced a new partnership with the Cortex Innovation Community to help create technology career opportunities for underrepresented groups with a 15-week cybersecurity program.

“Historically, underrepresented peoples aren’t working in the tech fields, because they’re like, ‘Well, I have to go to the West Coast, or it’s not available here,’” Per Scholas St. Louis Managing Director Charlie Mackey Jr. said. “By coming here, we can not only help bridge that gap, but also reframe it to where you can get that technology training right here, and then find a job here.”

Participants in the training program will learn how to set up computer networks and firewalls, troubleshoot IP addresses, identify network issues and defend against cyber threats. The program will also cover effective communication, customer service skills and how to document and submit technology requests tickets.

“The St. Louis region has a large number of unfilled jobs, particularly in growing areas like cybersecurity,” said Sam Fiorello, President and CEO of the Cortex Innovation Community.

“Adding Per Scholas to the existing infrastructure of local training partners will strengthen the support necessary to employ under-skilled workers and fill these critical job openings in the St. Louis region.”

Founded in 1995 and headquartered in Bronx, New York, Per Scholas provides technology training at campuses in 18 U.S. cities and says it has educated more than 16,000 individuals. The new course will be free and aims to prepare 20 participants for positions such as cybersecurity analysts, junior desktop technicians and technical support engineers.

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