In New Mexico and nationwide, Information Technology (IT) jobs are growing while workers continue to lack the skills needed to meet the demand. In New Mexico alone, the IT sector is expected to grow 20.7% between 2010 and 2020.
CNM Ingenuity Inc. has developed an Information Technology Apprenticeship Program (NMITAP) designed to bridge the gap between qualified applicants and employers. Learn about the program from John Mierzwa, Director of STEMulus Initiatives as he sits down with New Mexico Technology Council Executive Director Nyika Allen.
If you are an employer looking to hire or interested in becoming an apprenticeship, visit the NMITAP website for Frequently Asked Questions and more.
The New Mexico Technology Council will be hosting a free breakfast and informational session for employers on August 10th. Register here to attend.
Watch our recent interview with Margaux Kaynard, Vice President of Human Resources and Recruiting for Rural Sourcing Inc. They connect organizations with qualified, talented IT professionals and believe domestic outsourcing is smarter outsourcing. Rural Sourcing Inc. recently opened offices in New Mexico, bringing numerous high tech, technology oriented jobs to the state.
Margaux talk’s about the company’s growth and opening an office in Albuquerque.
You may have seen our post about the upcoming STC.UNM Innovate New Mexico Student Pitch Competition on April 25th.
Even if you don’t have a student at home or can’t make the event on April 25th (though we hope you’ll attend!) you can still support this important program and STEM efforts in our state by donating to the fund. This money will be split among the 5 teams who win the competition to help bring their idea, service or product to market.
You can find the GoFundMe page here at at the above image.
This is part of STC.UNM and the innovationACADEMY helping to change our community for the better!
SBIR / STTR Phase 1 Proposal Development Workshop with DOE emphasis
Facilitated by Todd Bisio
This comprehensive workshop will provide an overview of the SBIR/STTR programs, with an emphasis on those at the Department of Energy (DOE). Learn about the details behind “America’s seed fund” – the Federal SBIR/STTR process and the process to develop a competitive Phase 1 proposal.
The workshop will provide:
- An overview of the SBIR/STTR program and the three phases
- An overview of the agencies that offer SBIR/STTR grants and contracts
- An overview of the DoE SBIR/STTR program
- DoE SBIR/STTR eligibility information
- The difference between SBIR and STTR proposals
- How to search for particular topics
- How to write a successful SBIR/STTR proposal
- DoE solicitation open and closing dates
While the workshop will emphasize the DOE, the information provided will be relevant to other SBIR/STTR awarding agencies.
When: Thursday, March 10, 2016 from 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Where: San Juan College, Quality Center for Business – Room QCB 5017, Farmington, NM 87402
Register: Please register here or at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/sbir-sttr-phase-1-proposal-development-workshop-with-doe-emphasis-tickets-20972053978
About Todd Bisio
The NM FAST Partnership Program, housed at Arrowhead Center, provides small businesses with:
- Assistance in identifying appropriate solicitations and topic areas
- How-to information on agency registrations and electronic proposal submission
- Guidance on proposal preparation, including assessments of technical objectives and hypotheses and drafting supporting documents (e.g., biographical sketches, resources, and budgets)
- Specifics on the target agency’s requirements for commercialization content in Phase I/Phase II proposals
- Technical reviews and edits of proposals, with feedback
In addition, NM FAST will provide select first-time awardees micro-funds of $695 to cover the expenses of professional services (e.g. Commercialization Plan Assistance, Development Partner Identification Assistance, Research Partner Identification Assistance, Counsel on Patents and Technology Licensing, and Indirect Cost Rate Advisement) for proposal development.
For the technology sector, in any city, during any stage of its’ growth, talent (abundance or lack) is always a popular topic of discussion.
After talent, there is always a discussion of the availability of jobs (or not) to keep and attract said talent.
Over the past several months at NMTC, we have observed vastly different opinions from our members and in the press about these topics. Opinions range from a perceived lack of good tech jobs to an abundance of new jobs (brought about by expansions and recruitment) that we are unprepared to fill.
“In my first several weeks in Albuquerque, I have heard a recurring challenge from the business leaders I’ve sat down with: Good talent is hard to find. It’s also the NO. 1 complaint I heard from business leaders in Houston….West Michigan…and multiple other cites with vastly different economies for more than a decade,” — Candace Beek, Albuquerque Business First
“Any time I’ve tried to hire tech talent here, it’s hard. People don’t live here,” — Garrett Smith, Bryte Studio
“We picked Albuquerque because of the talent in this city.” — Shaun McHugh, Fidelity Investments
“Skilled talent is in short supply,”– Renay Moya, Robert Half Technologies
“Albuquerque scored at the top of every one of those criteria,”– Monty Hamilton, Rural Sourcing Inc. (referring to the high quality of life with a low cost of living, a talented and educated workforce, as well as a city that understands the digital economy)
The conversation doesn’t stop there. We talk about new job training programs. That’s good. Until it’s followed by talk of the lack of positions or adequate ways to place people once they are trained. That’s bad.
All this does not even cover the conversations about if we are reaching far enough into K-12 to attract and train the next generation of tech professionals. Or, whether we are paying enough (or too much) attention to the types of talent we need (millennial, baby boomer, women in tech).
It’s mind boggling.
AND, it’s encouraging.
We have something to talk about. The technology industry in New Mexico is establishing its identity and is having real growing pains. Sometimes we just need to say our worst fears out loud to see if our problems are real and our evolution as a business sector is normal. At some point it will all make sense and be good.
And it is good. We are seeing tech companies like Ideum grow their employee base. We are watching start-ups like Lavu receive significant investment and gain national attention. We are seeing new companies like Rural Sourcing establish new roots here in part because of our educated workforce. We are getting serious about job training and placement programs.
Just a few examples include:
- TalentABQ, led by Jamai Blivin of Innovate+Educate — on a mission to find 350 tech employees by the end of the year.
- CNM, through a $3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, will launch an information technology apprenticeship program for 300 students, bridging its students’ work skills gap over the next three years.
- FatPipeABQ and NMTC are officially launching a local chapter of Girl Develop It, a nonprofit organization that exists to provide affordable and judgment-free opportunities for women interested in learning web and software development.
All this to say, we probably have a talent gap. And yes, we need more good jobs for talented people. But, we are talking about it and that’s a start. In July, NMTC, CNM and other partners launched a series of discussions with community leaders, employers and tech talent all trying to figure out why there is such a disconnect.
The next step is for us, as a community, is to identify one or more categories of issues we can actually address and solve.
Kobe Bryant, a pro basketball player with five NBA titles and one of the game’s greatest scorer once said “Everything negative – pressure, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise.”
The same is true for Albuquerque’s tech scene. The fact that we are facing these issues is a result of the opportunity we as the Albuquerque and New Mexico tech community have created. Let’s make the most of it and keep the tough conversations going.
We’d love to hear your thoughts on tech talent and jobs in New Mexico. Come see us at FatPipe or connect with us on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.
Join Albuquerque Business First and a group of high-profile startup entrepreneurs, funders and experts as we explore Albuquerque’s push to grow our own entrepreneurs. Albuquerque’s leaders have said this city has to learn to fail as well as succeed in order to truly become an entrepreneurial community. We’ll hear about the ups and downs of startup life from those who’ve lived it. The speakers include Molly Cernicek, CEO of SportXast; Hong Hou, venture partner at ARCH Venture Partners; Raghu Kopalle, founder and CEO of innoBright; John Mierzwa, director of STEMulus initiatives at Central New Mexico Community College; and Federica Pericle, president and CEO of Agilvax. Gary Oppedahl, Director of the CABQ Economic Development Department, will give the event’s opening remarks, and Bill Bice, chairman and president of ABQid, will give closing remarks.
Of course most of the events in our wider community are put together by a wide variety of groups and other associations. Here’s a look at what’s going on in the near future and some of the recurring meetups and other events that they have.
IDEAS & COFFEE: PUTTING THE WEB TOGETHER IN YOUR MIND (5/12) )
In this conversation we will discuss how the technology of the web works and how all the pieces fit together in a spectrum ranging from iPhones to Google servers. As an entrepreneur, designer or developer creates a project or a business, questions come up repeatedly about where to begin and what to do next. We will attempt to put together something of a map of the huge world of the internet in order to make answering many of these questions a little easier.
WHEN: Monday, May 12th; 6 – 8:00 PM
WHERE: Ideas & Coffee l Albuquerque
SIGNUP: FREE with pre-registration HERE.
NMBIO: HEALTH, NOT HEALTHCARE AS A NATIONAL STRATEGIC PRIORITY (5/13)
Our nation faces multiple, simultaneous and interrelated epidemic scale crises across many levels – in our systems, our organizations, our communities, our families, and ourselves – that diminish our individual and collective security and capacity. We are caught in a self-fulfilling negative cycle – in which we suffer too much, spend too much, waste too much, and die too young – and the resilience of a nation so conceived cannot long endure. Dr Wayne Rosenkrans, of the Center for Biomedical Innovation at MIT will give us a vision of the future of “health”.
WHEN: Tuesday, May 13th; 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM
WHERE: BioScience Center | Albuquerque
SIGNUP: $35 for non-NMBio members HERE.
SFBI: THE EUREKA EFFECT (5/14)
The Eureka Effect is like speed dating only smarter. Businesses from northern New Mexico will meet and mingle with scientists from Los Alamos National Laboratory that can offer free technical and scientific assistance. Each business will spend 5 minutes of one-on- one alone time with each scientist to whisper sweet nothings of nano fibers and materials testing. If there’s a spark there will be plenty of time to kindle it during the open networking section. If that synthesis of data structures, algorithms, numerical analysis, programming methodologies, simulation, visualization, data analysis, and performance optimization applied to the study of complex problems – is a’rocking, don’t come a’knocking. Space is limited. Must Register..
WHEN: Wednesday, May 14th; 4:45 – 7:00 PM
WHERE: Santa Fe Business Incubator | Santa Fe
SIGNUP: FREE with Pre-Registration. Info HERE.
ABQ QUALITY NETWORK: GETTING YOUR ORGANIZATION ENGAGED IN QUALITY (5/22)
Participants will learn the definition, theory, and practice of preventing defects – and have the opportunity to become familiar with an example of how to prevent defects and how to apply it in any organizational setting. Organizations that prevent defects as a matter of everyday business have reached outstanding levels of success.
WHEN: Thursday, May 22nd; 7:30 – 9:00 AM
WHERE: UNM Continuing Education l Albuquerque
SIGNUP: $20; Registration HERE.
NMFO: NEW MEXICO FILM & MEDIA INDUSTRY CONFERENCE (5/30-31)
The New Mexico State Film Office’s annual Film & Media Industry Conference offers a broad range of panels, workshops, vendor exhibitions and networking opportunities that target all areas of film and media from budgeting and attracting investors to post production and emerging media.
WHEN: Friday, May 30th – Saturday May 31st
WHERE: Hotel Albuquerque l Albuquerque
SIGNUP: FREE with pre-registration HERE.
RECURRING COMMUNITY EVENTS
The Albuquerque WordPress Group has several meetups including a monthly session at WESST on the 2nd Thursday evening of the month, weekly Workalong Wednesdays, and Women Working w/WordPress the first Monday of each month. Visit http://www.meetup.com/
Cocoa Conspiracy is an informal gathering of iOS (and other) developers 9:00 AM Thursday mornings at Winning Coffee (across from UNM). More athttp://cocoaconspiracy.com
The iOS Developers Workshop meets the 1st and 3rd Friday of each month at Ideas & Coffee. Look for Friday events at http://www.meetup.com/
Lean Startup Monthly meets the first Tuesday night of each month at Ideas & Coffee. More info at: http://www.meetup.com/
The New Mexico .NET Users Group (NMUG) exists to help facilitate education and knowledge exchange among developers, architects and managers with an interest in Microsoft’s .NET technologies. NMUG meets on the first Thursday of each month. More at: http://www.nmug.net/
The New Mexico AIGA chapter produces a handful of events each month, from the S.I.P Social Hours to CoffeeTalks, workshops and more. Find it all at http://newmexico.aiga.org/
NM Internet Entrepreneurs is for internet entrepreneurs with an existing business or actively working
on a business idea. Meets monthly with info at: http://www.meetup.com/NM-
The NM Tech Council and other community members post several tech meetups and other events
New Mexico SolidWorks User Group is a user community for the SolidWorks 3D CAD program dedicated to improving the technical abilities of their members as well as providing a forum for business and employment networking. Their meetings are on the 2nd Wednesday of alternate months (June, August, etc.) at 5:30pm with pre-registration requested at https://nmsug.eventbrite.
OpenHackABQ meets the third Thursday of each month at Convivium CoWorking, beginning at 6PM. More info at: http://openhack.github.io/
The RubiABQ Meetup Group for Ruby on Rails developers meets the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of each month at Ideas & Coffee. Find them at http://www.meetup.com/
The Sandbox is a new space at the South Valley Economic Development Center for co-working, learning, incubation and more. Join this new and growing community at http://svedc.org/sandbox
To sign up for our e-news letters and other communications, please visit http://www.nmtechcouncil.org/about-nmtc/media-channels