Mind the (skills) gap: New IBM programs prepare IT pros of tomorrow
Delaney Turner 270003RQ8K Delaney.Turner@ca.ibm.com | | Tags:  ibmsoftware
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Technology is such an integral part of any organization that CEOs worldwide now place it ahead of market forces and the economy as the top driver of change.
If only their organizations had the skills to take advantage.
The imperative to arm more workers with technical skills is a global issue. To help prepare our global workforce to apply and monetize these advanced technologies, today IBM also unveiled new and significantly expanded resources to help people get the technical skills they need to succeed. The initiative includes new training courses and resources for IT professionals, training, technology and curriculum materials for faculty, and expanded programs to directly engage students with real-world business challenges.
On the Smarter Planet blog, IBM's General Manager of ISV and Developer Relations Jim Corgel today writes: "Businesses should aggressively build depth and breadth in the emerging skills among their employees. They should encourage experimentation and let their employees try out new technologies. And they should work with their business partners to set a shared skills agenda. Universities should build new programs and curricula to address the skills gap. They should incorporate real-world technology and business cases to prepare students for a rapidly changing environment. And they should develop a local industry ecosystem so they’re aware of the latest trends and can place students in internships that provide them with the most up-to-date expertise."
IBM is responding. For the first time, IBM’s Academic Initiative will offer access to curriculum and training resources on IT security to help students gain market-ready cyber security skills. Cited as the top barrier to adoption of advanced technologies in the IBM Tech Trends Report, cyber security is also a key job growth area. The information cyber security workforce is expected to nearly double by 2015. The new offerings include:
The ability to bring the latest enterprise technology directly into the classroom at no additional cost is critical in helping students gain market-ready skills. The IBM Academic Initiative now provides software licenses and how-to training materials in three new areas:
Finally, to help faculty update their skills on advanced technologies, IBM today unveiled a Knowledge Exchange. This online resource allows professors from around the world to share and collaborate on courseware and best practices with their peers. The initial offerings in the Knowledge Exchange will feature curriculum from winning IBM Smarter Planet grant faculty.
I’ll be going deeper into the report over the next few days, drawing out specific findings sharing viewpoints from IBM executives from each of the growth areas. In the meantime, feel free to visit these links: