Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36 Page 37 Page 38 Page 39 Page 40 Page 41 Page 42 Page 43 Page 44 Page 45 Page 46 Page 47 Page 48 Page 49 Page 50 Page 51 Page 52 Page 53 Page 54 Page 55 Page 56 Page 57 Page 58 Page 59 Page 60 Page 61 Page 62 Page 63 Page 64 Page 65 Page 66 Page 67 Page 68 Page 69 Page 70 Page 71 Page 72 Page 73 Page 74 Page 75 Page 76 Page 77 Page 78 Page 79 Page 80CompTIAWorld | SPRING 2017 34 Atrion – now under the Carousel Industries umbrella – is doing its part to close that industry-wide skills gap. They are not alone. Starting at the Beginning Qualcomm, which is active in CompTIA’s policy and public sector initiatives, has also taken the skills gap issue to heart. Through its Thinkabit Lab, fun, hands-on engineering and career development activities are designed to expose students to STEM concepts and careers that are essential to tomorrow’s workforce. The original Thinkabit Lab in San Diego, California, has served more than 10,000 students, teachers and administrators since 2014. Building on this success, Qualcomm is collaborating with public- and private- sector organizations to expand access to the Thinkabit Lab experience. “Ultimately, we’re working to enable a diverse future workforce; support STEM- related policies, particularly as they relate to computer science and IT; and create impact for our nation’s students STEM fields,” said Erin Gavin, director of government affairs for the company. Currently, there are 10 programs in schools, libraries, universities and private sector environments inspired by Qualcomm Thinkabit Lab experiences. Qualcomm’s Thinkabit Lab, in collaboration with Virginia Tech in the national capital region, is the first Thinkabit Lab outside of California. “Our collaboration will leverage the university’s academic depth in engineering and education and work with educators who may lead more Thinkabit Lab-inspired STEM programs in their schools and communities, helping to grow the number of teachers with high-quality, hands-on STEM experience,” Gavin said, CompTIA Premier Member. Creating Partnerships Teaching the teacher is not a new concept to Angel Piñeiro, Jr., vice president of services for ASI System Integration, a CompTIA Premier Member and former Creating IT Futures Board Member. ASI has long partnered with nonprofit training schools such as Per Scholas, YearUp, Empower and Job Corps. These partnerships provide the company’s new technicians with PC training and, in return, ASI helps each organization tweak its programs to current industry needs and educate instructors. It also hires on students as interns. ASI has since expanded its collaborations to include community colleges. Piñeiro says these partnerships have significantly cut their training time from a rigorous six months to an effective 90 days. At the end of those 90 days, ASI considers the technician billable and he or she can work in the field. What began as a means to save Qualcomm nurtures girls’ interest in the STEM fields at its Qcamp.