Ohio businesses can connect with pilot sites to offer internships, strengthening their workforce

(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Ohio Lt. Governor Jon Husted, who also serves as Director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, today announced the launch of the High School Tech Internship Pilot Program, a new internship opportunity that will introduce 100 high school students to technology careers and businesses in Ohio.

This pilot program was created in partnership with the Ohio Development Services Agency, the Ohio Department of Education, and the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, along with input from Ohio’s business community.

“Ohio has high school students who have demonstrated competency in these tech areas at the same level as many people already in the workforce,” said Lt. Governor Husted. “We know students stay in Ohio if they are connected to businesses at an earlier age, and that’s exactly what this pilot is doing. The solution to your workforce shortage may be right under your nose at your local high school.”

Today’s announcement launches the opportunity for Ohio employers to connect with pilot sites to offer internships and receive reimbursement for a portion of the intern’s wages.  Interns will be placed in roles that focus on software, data, cloud and IT infrastructure, and cybersecurity. Students will be expected to perform job duties similar to what would be expected in an entry-level position.

“This pilot program connects and builds relationships between businesses and education leaders so we can expand the program statewide in the future,” said Lydia Mihalik, director of the Ohio Development Services Agency.  “It will also introduce students to career opportunities, provide them with work experience, and show them the opportunities that exist in Ohio’s technology sector.”

In mid-March, Business Advisory Councils and Career Tech Planning District Leads were asked to apply as pilot sites for this opportunity. Twelve pilot sites have been selected, with two sites representing each region of the state. These pilot sites include schools within:

  • Auburn Vocational School District – Northeast Region
  • Building Bridges to Careers Network – Southeast Region
  • Cincinnati Public Schools – Southwest Region
  • Columbiana County School’s Business Advisory Council – Northeast Region
  • Educational Service Center of Central Ohio – Central Region
  • Grant Career Center IT Business & Industry Advisory Council – Southwest Region
  • Greene County Career Center – West Region
  • Lawrence County Business Advisory Council – Southeast Region
  • Miami Valley Career Technology Center – West Region
  • Tolles Career & Technical Center – Central Region
  • Vanguard Sentinel Career-Technical Planning District – Northwest Region
  • Washington Local Schools – Northwest Region

“Work-based learning opportunities, like the High School Tech Internship program, can be exciting and powerful contributors to a student’s education experience. They align beautifully with the vision articulated in Ohio’s strategic plan for education, Each Child, Our Future, for students to be challenged, prepared, and empowered for future success. Students, businesses, schools and communities all benefit.” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Paolo DeMaria. “We’re extremely proud of the pilot sites and their business partners for investing in students, supporting their growth and providing them with this tremendous learning opportunity.”

Employers participating in the pilot will receive a higher wage reimbursement for younger students to help more students experience technology careers at an earlier age. Employers will also receive an extra $100 in reimbursement if they can demonstrate that the intern has earned an industry-recognized credential recognized on the Innovative Workforce Incentive Program (IWIP) List by the time of the reimbursement request.

Employers interested in offering internships through the High School Tech Internship Pilot Program should contact one of the pilot sites by visiting Workforce.Ohio.gov/HSTechInternship.

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