Jefferson State, in conjunction with community partners, is offering an IT Help Desk class along with a support system that can impact the lives of single mothers in St. Clair County.
“Online technology skills are important now more than ever,” said Christine McLain, 2Gen Grant Coach in Jefferson State’s Center for Workforce Education. “This is especially true during the pandemic, when many employers in the service industry are letting people go or closing their doors. Many of these employers will offer their services online.”
Ten women will be selected for the IT Help Desk Training program that will last from March 1 through June 24.
Classes will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, at the Jefferson State St. Clair-Pell City Campus and St. Clair Head Start.
Participants will receive scholarships that cover registration fees, computer learning access codes and a transportation stipend.
Program partners include The Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham, St. Clair County Head Start and Pell City First United Methodist Church.
“This program has been a blessing to not only the Head Start community, but the county as well,” said Carmelita Poindexter, executive director of St. Clair County Head Start. “We are excited for the opportunity that it affords our parents. Placing families on a path to success is our goal here at Head Start, and this partnership allows us to reach that goal one family at a time.”
“Pell City First United Methodist Church is both honored and humbled to be in this partnership serving single mothers in our area,” church Administrator Teresa Harris said. “We support this ministry in small ways that make a big difference. We believe by helping these mothers continue their education it benefits them and their children and as well as strengthens our ties to our local community.”
The program will provide basic computer training and teach IT skills needed to work as a computer user support specialist. Scholarship participants will complete training in job-readiness, basic computer functions and the IT help desk support specialist course leading to a certificate of completion and an opportunity to sit for a national certification.
“This is starting from the beginning, so we’re not requiring the women to have any computer skills,” McLain said. “These are needed skills in the job market, and with that, our graduates will be able to obtain positions in IT help desk specialist, computer support specialist, data management and also security management.”
Comprehensive support services provided for participants includes a career coach who helps the participants beginning with registration, serves as a point of contact during the course, and then conducts mock interviews to hone job-seeking skills and connects graduates with employers.
Soft skills such as goal setting and time management are taught alongside the IT material.
“These programs are extremely important to the community, and I have seen their impact on women’s lives,” McLain said. “This is a wonderful opportunity for single mothers in the St. Clair County area.”
Participants are required to: be a single mother living in St. Clair County, meet income requirements, have obtained a high school diploma or GED, have an interest in beginning a career in IT help desk/user support, and have an ability to dedicated extended time and effort to study in and out of class.
Successful candidates of the program will receive a certificate of completion from Jefferson State and have the option to sit for the CompTIA IT Fundamentals (ITF+) certification. To receive ITF+ certification, participants must pass the national exam. Students intending to take the CompTIA IT Fundamentals (FC0-U61) examination should review the published requirements by CompTIA to verify that they meet all the qualifications.
For more information or for an application, email McLain at email@example.com.