INDIANAPOLIS -- JPMorgan Chase has announced a $100,000 grant to fund the launch of IUPUI's Informatics Diversity-Enhanced Workforce Youth Internship Program, a workforce initiative that offers educational and career support to underserved high school students to help prepare them for the information technology jobs of the future.
Administered by the School of Informatics and Computing at IUPUI, iDEW is a wraparound educational and career pathway model for information technology that helps provide real-world experience for high school students and connects them to local technical jobs and internships. The JPMorgan Chase grant is creating opportunities for up to 75 additional students for employment at Indianapolis-area companies in 2019.
Unemployment among 16-to-24-year-olds remains nearly three times the rate for adults 25 and older. Access to quality summer work experience helps put teens and young adults on a path to greater economy mobility. As part of JPMorgan Chase's workforce efforts around the globe, the firm has invested $17 million in summer youth employment programs in 22 U.S. cities that have resulted in 40,000 youth being placed in summer jobs across 7,000 work sites around the country, including in Indianapolis.
"Summer employment in technology industries helps young people prepare for the demands of a changing economy," said Owen Washburn, vice president for global philanthropy at JPMorgan Chase. "We are pleased to support iDEW's internship program because it offers that opportunity for students in Indianapolis' fast-growing tech economy."
The iDEW summer internship program is a part of EmployIndy's Project Indy, whose vision is to drive growth in Marion County by investing in innovative strategies focused on reducing barriers that residents might encounter that would block their access to career pathways. EmployIndy will help coordinate these efforts.
"EmployIndy is pleased to leverage its position and programs, including Project Indy and Job Ready Indy, to help iDEW connect talented students to work-based learning experiences with local employers," said Angela Carr Klitzsch, president and CEO of EmployIndy. "Internships like these equip students with the skills and experiences needed to impact the local workforce in the in-demand technology field."
Real-world experience for high school students is one of many ways the iDEW program aims to prepare students for work readiness in IT careers. According to iDEW Program Manager Vicki Daugherty, iDEW students are uniquely qualified to fill internships in technical roles rather than perform the routine clerical tasks often assigned to high school students "due to their experience in creating technology solutions to authentic challenges that reflect tech industry practices and principles, including agile development and user-centered design. Through project-based learning, iDEW students are accustomed to working collaboratively, putting to use creative, critical, computational and design thinking skills."
Currently, 44 percent of the iDEW respondents in a recent survey are working, including in IT positions at Bank of America, Infodynamics, Defenders and the Wells Center; 10 more iDEW students interned this summer at Cummins and Eli Lilly.
"We found all the students who were part of the Cummins IT projects to be confident and to have the right level of foundational IT skills," said Chaitanya Rao, software lead engineer at Cummins. "They also demonstrated a very good attitude toward learning new technologies and were productive in a very quick time.
"Having iDEW students as part of our teams has been truly a win-win situation for both the students and Cummins, and we look forward to continuing this engagement in the coming years."
More than 160 other iDEW students are actively looking for internships and can benefit from brokering services offered by ProjectIndy.
JPMorgan Chase first partnered with the School of Informatics and Computing in 2015 to pilot the iDEW initiative. The program has recently completed its fourth year and has served over 1,000 students in eight Indianapolis-area high schools to date. The program boasts a 94 percent college attendance rate, with 68 percent in STEM-related degree programs. This latest grant brings JPMorgan Chase's total sponsorship of iDEW to $450,000.
Students can participate in iDEW for multiple years during high school, diving into new projects and learning modules as they advance through the program. Many will earn professional IT certifications that prepare them for the workforce or for going on to two-year or four-year academic paths in informatics. Working in teams, iDEW students present informatics projects that tackle real-world problems incorporating mobile apps, robotics, video games, internet of things, chatbots, data visualization and other trends in IT. Learn more online or contact Vicki Daugherty, iDEW program manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
EmployIndy guides the local workforce ecosystem and makes strategic investments to remove barriers to quality employment for underserved and underrepresented residents. As the workforce development board for Marion County, guided by 21 business, civic, education and nonprofit community leaders, EmployIndy invests $20 million annually in public, private and philanthropic funds for both youth and adults.
About JPMorgan Chase
JPMorgan Chase and Co. is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.7 trillion and operations worldwide. The firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing, and asset management. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase and Co. serves millions of customers in the United States and many of the world's most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands.