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Producing IT professionals through Oklahoma’s Grow with Google program

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

By: Destiny Washington

In partnership with the State of Oklahoma’s Grow with Google program, ReMerge is helping women explore new pathways as IT support professionals. Recently, nine mothers successfully completed ReMerge’s Career Pathway Program for a certificate from Google in IT support.

ReMerge is an alternative to prison for mothers and pregnant women who are facing charges for nonviolent crimes. Instead of prison, they participate in the program, gaining vital skills for recovery, family building, employment and self-sufficiency.

“Each step in these mothers’ careers has taken courage and diligence. The courage to challenge themselves outside of their comfort zone to learn new skills and chart a new career path,” said Meaghan Hunt, ReMerge director of Workforce Development. “It is not easy, and it takes grit, determination and waking up every day and choosing the hard path. And I’ve got crazy respect for every one of them.”

This program consists of four phases and typically requires 18 to 24 months for completion. The final phase is dedicated to preparing participants for employment. Individuals interested in pursuing a career in technology have the opportunity to enroll in a rigorous 12-week, after-hours program designed to help them obtain the Google IT Support Certificate. 

Essential and fundamental technology topics such as binary code, customer support, networking troubleshooting, data recovery and backup, cryptography and more are covered. The program is made possible through a collaborative effort involving strategic partners such as OMES, OKDHS, Alliance OKC and Google.

Participants in this program are provided with a facilitator, a learn-and-earn model with a rate of $15 per hour for classroom study time, and on-site child care and transportation reimbursement.

“I am leaving this program feeling accomplished and saying I feel confident and proud of myself,” said ReMerge graduate Brooke Newman. She hopes to further her IT knowledge by earning her CompTIA A+ certification.

The goal is to take people who were previously clients of state services and give them the opportunity through employment to become contributors to the state.

“We are creating more pathways into state employment and helping break generational barriers. When someone gets employed like this, the whole family tree benefits,” said Emily Gise, programs administrator at OMES.

Each of these women will continue to grow their talent in jobs with the state’s fair chance employment partners. Learn more about the OMES Grow with Google program.

Last Modified on Feb 01, 2024
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