Whitley County Schools
Dataseam expands apprenticeship program for Kentucky students
By Haley Cawthon – Reporter, Louisville Business First, December 23, 2021
A Louisville-based tech company is expanding its efforts to grow and improve IT workforce through newly-awarded funds from the federal Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC).
Dataseam received $1.5 million to further expand its U.S. Department of Labor-approved Registered Apprenticeship in Information Technology program for high school students in the Eastern Kentucky region.
Implemented with guidance from the Kentucky Labor Cabinet and the Education and Workforce Cabinet, the two-year program includes paid IT jobs for students in participating school districts, hands-on coursework and on-the-job training and mentoring, according to a news release.
“We are excited to expand the IT Apprenticeship,” said Dataseam CEO Brian Gupton in the release. “Our project competed against 175 others from the 13 ARC states for total awards of $43.3 million. We are proud the Dataseam model for education and workforce development was assessed by subject matter experts at the federal level to be a good return on investment to fund these efforts.”
As many as 25 school districts in 20 Kentucky counties will have the opportunity to participate. The training will better prepare the students to further their education at the university level or seek out IT-based jobs in education, health care, local banking, and state and local government, the release continued. Approximately 45,000 students in the participating counties will have access to new technology as part of what the award will provide.
Dataseam’s award was one of six given in Kentucky totaling $5.5 million through the Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization Initiative (POWER). The POWER Initiative targets federal resources to help communities and regions affected by job losses in coal mining, coal power plant operations, and coal-related supply chain industries due to the changing economics of America’s energy production. Efforts include cultivating economic diversity, enhancing job training and re-employment opportunities, creating jobs in existing or new industries and attracting new sources of investment.
A goal of the apprenticeship program is to address Kentucky’s ongoing shortage of IT talent and the increased demands for such talent due to Covid-related remote work and instruction. Louisville Forward estimates that one-third of the workforce necessary to meet Louisville’s needs will come from Kentucky’s other 119 counties.
“These students will be the first of a pipeline created by Dataseam to meet not only the labor needs of Louisville but also the Commonwealth as a whole. Many of them could eventually be transplants to Louisville, coming here for college but staying for the opportunities our city provides,” said Mary Ellen Wiederwohl, chief of Louisville Forward, in the release.
Since 2005, Dataseam has improved classroom instruction and digital literacy in Kentucky schools and allowed increased employment for participants by providing training and industry-standard certification to participating Kentucky schools.
Dataseam operates the only Apple Authorized Training Center (AATC) in Kentucky. More than 8,000 educators have received training and school technology professionals now comprise the largest cohort of Apple OS engineers in the United States.
“The DOL Apprenticeship is the next step in taking what we have learned as part of workforce development in the Dataseam ecosystem and provide those successes to our next generation. Engaging apprentice candidates in a skilled trade earlier in life provides the option to enter the IT workforce immediately upon graduation from high school or seek further instruction at the university level,” said Dataseam COO Gena McCubbins, in the release.
The University of Louisville and Morehead State University identify and recruit students from its 48 Kentucky Dataseam-participating districts. Both institutions have funded separately the Dataseam Scholars program, providing four-year scholarships to students wishing to go into the STEM disciplines, including Information Technology.
“We have had great success recruiting students from Dataseam schools from across the state to our campus,” said Jenny Sawyer, University of Louisville’s Executive Director of Admissions, in the release. “Students completing this apprenticeship should be better prepared for computer science, engineering and other related fields we offer as well as more competitive for scholarships and other opportunities.”
(Louisville, KY) – Thirty-two high school students and parents from Russell Independent, Paducah Tilghman, Elliott County and Whitley County Schools toured the main campus, cancer center and engineering maker space at the University of Louisville to learn about areas of study, career options and scholarship opportunities.
The full day featured visits to the research labs at the James Graham Brown Cancer Center where Dr. John Trent and several teams of scientists use the data processed on the DataseamGrid to search for and develop potential cancer drugs. The multi-discipline approach employs physicians, engineers, chemists, biologists, computer science specialists and others to fight cancer.
Representatives from the J.B. Speed School of Engineering outlined degrees available and highlighted work experience each student receives through internships at local companies. Students graduate in five years with a Master of Engineering degree and marketable work experience that takes them beyond the books.
Students were really impressed with the associated 1B First Build professional maker space where students can co-create potential products. Backed by GE Appliances, the campus facility provides students access to world-class engineering and design talent as well as some of the latest manufacturing equipment.
Students from schools in the Dataseam program interested in studying Engineering, Science, Medical Research or Health Sciences should apply today (link). Specific DataseamScholarships as well as other programs to help with the cost of college are available. Deadline January 15.
Partnering universities have provided over $2.2 million in 4-year scholarships to students from Dataseam-participating schools to advance Kentucky’s workforce in STEM and STEM education.
Whitley County High School students Samuel “Blake” McCullah, Connor Wilson, Morgan Mckiddy, and Hancock County High School student Casey Baize were honored by EWDC Deputy Secretary Josh Benton, Senate President Robert Stivers (R-Manchester), and Representative Regina Huff (R-Williamsburg) for their participation in the Dataseam IT Support Specialist Apprenticeship Program.
The Dataseam IT Support Specialist Apprenticeship Program was created to help high school student gain hands-on work experience, earn professional certifications, and graduate with a better career focus. In the paid apprenticeship students will work along side experienced professionals to maintain, configure, install, repair and trouble shoot computer, network and software at the school.
This paid apprentice program is the first of its kind registered by the federal government and Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet for high school students.
Dataseam is uniquely qualified to help prepare the next generation of information technology specialist. The company collaborates with 38 school districts across Kentucky to manage one of the world’s larges computing clouds for research. Dataseam provides industry certifications and technical support to help school IT professionals better support and utilize education technology.
“Congratulations to Dataseam of Kentucky on the creation of a new information technology Registered Apprenticeship program,” EWDC SecretaryDerrick Ramsey said. “This program allows apprentices to earn on the job while receiving state of the art training in careers with excellent stability and growth potential.”
“Through this program, students will receive practical instruction, hands-on experience, mentoring. They will experience available career options in the field of Information Technology,” said Whitley County Superintendent John Siler. “Dataseam will supply our district with over $15,000 of computers to benefit all students. I am so appreciative of this opportunity to collaborate with Dataseam to increase opportunities for our students to gain real-life, hands-on experience leading to certifications and college credit for them while they are still in high school.”
“We are eager to add this IT Apprenticeship aspect to the existing statewide Dataseam ecosystem,” said Dataseam CEO, Brian Gupton. “Growing this segment of the Commonwealth’s future workforce helps to facilitate additional next-generation opportunity for more Kentuckians. Dataseam is proud of the partnerships working together to be a part of the solution.”
The Education and Workforce Development Cabinet acts as the governing body for Registered Apprenticeships in Kentucky, and provides technical and consultative services to employers. The “Kentucky Trained. Kentucky Built.” campaign was launched in 2016 to signal the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet’s commitment to strengthening and growing Registered Apprenticeships across the Commonwealth. For more information, visithttps://educationcabinet.ky.gov/Pages/default.aspx.
Follow the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet on Facebookand Twitterfor all the latest updates. For more information about the cabinet, visit https://educationcabinet.ky.gov/Pages/default.aspx.
Dataseam built and manages one of the most powerful cloud-based high performance computing environments in the world to benefit education, research and economic development in the state of Kentucky. Important cancer research is completed on a network of over 9,000 computers in 38 school districts. Participating School districts benefit from college scholarships, professional training and certifications, and student apprentice programs. For more information on how to get involved with this apprenticeship program, visit https://www.kydataseam.com/
(Williamsburg, KY) – The DataseamGrid is comprised of thousands of computers working 24-hours a day to help researchers find new treatments for cancer. We talk about thousands of teachers benefiting from Dataseam workshops. We point with pride to industry-standard Certified Technicians supporting school technology. We highlight Dataseam Scholarships supporting college students. Sometimes it is nice to look at what these students have accomplished. Craig Roaden – In His Own Words.
My name is Craig Roaden. I am a graduate of Whitley County High School and the University of Louisville. I am currently employed as a Process Technician for Michelin North America. I work at Michelin’s premier facility for cutting-edge Ultrahigh Performance tirelines in Greenville, South Carolina. I could not have achieved these feats and paved a way for a rewarding future without the help of Dataseam initiatives and scholarship programs. These opportunities have allowed me to embrace new technologies and prepare myself for the advancements that the workforce demands.
The Dataseam Scholars program at the University of Louisville helps students from participating school districts chase their dreams. Apply Today.
Dataseam supports many Kentucky high schools with grants and funding to promote interest of students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. Our school system (grade schools to high school) has used this funding to update our classrooms and integrate new technologies and computer systems into our curriculum. I had personal involvement taking computer programing and multimedia applications courses my senior year. I am a firm believer that exposing students to technology and STEM career possibilities will motivate them to succeed in their careers and higher education goals. Having access to these databases and equipment helped affirm my choice to seek higher education in engineering. The support from my family and foundations in our community and school system helped me become an Eagle Scout, Kentucky Governor Scholar, Commonwealth Ambassador, and a member of the Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels all before high school graduation.
As a high school scholar in Kentucky, Dataseam opened many doors for my future. Dataseam provides scholarships for students, like me, to help educate themselves in STEM fields. With the scholarship assistance from Dataseam, I was able to financially afford to remain in-state and attend the University of Louisville J.B. Speed School of Engineering. Remaining in-state allowed me to stay close to my family and support Kentucky’s universities. With the help and support of Dataseam’s presence at UofL, I was offered a variety of networking among faculty, staff, and provosts across the UofL campus I would not have otherwise known. These relationships helped blossom in my involvement in many campus societies and groups including the Golden Key Honor Society, National Society of Collegiate Scholars, etc. As a Dataseam scholar, I quickly became involved with the admissions department as a campus shadow host and student ambassador. University of Louisville does a magnificent job in welcoming future students and answering their questions. I have been honored to serve at college fairs and student panels to help parents and students alike prepare for the college transition and learn about opportunities available through programs like Dataseam. In 5 short years I have earned a B.S. and Masters of Engineering in Chemical Engineering and graduated debt-free. I thank Dataseam involvement in my education and helping utilize my time on campus. I am very thankful to enter the workforce without any student debts holding me back. I earned the W.S. Speed award for substantial contributions to the Speed School community as well as a J.B. Speed Alumni Award. I am chasing my dreams and becoming the adult and contributing citizen I am proud to be.
Not only has Dataseam been an inspiration and a foundational block in my education and successes, but it also allows opportunity for students like me to give back to the community, local universities, and the state as a whole. Dataseam has a strong role in supporting the local cancer centers and a well-known university presence. Dataseam seeks to educate the masses and support local families and schools and nourishing young minds to seek new and exciting careers of the future in engineering and scientific fields by helping them get grants and funding for higher education and new opportunities. I strongly urge you to continue the narrative of the hundreds of students, scholars, cancer patients, and engineers like myself that have benefitted from this company’s continual work.
Craig Aaron Roaden, Process Technician for Michelin North America