- Michigan will join in on the Cisco CyberVets Scholarship program, which will create up to 20 scholarships for transitioning service members, veterans, members of the National Guard, reservists and military spouses in the state, according to a Dec. 6 announcement from Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.
- The Cisco Veterans Cyber Scholarship Program makes available free online cybersecurity training and certification.
- Whitmer has also announced a "new collaborative effort between the state and California-based technology leaders" called MI Next. "MI Next will help to identify new and innovative ways that Michigan and Silicon Valley can collaborate and leverage our respective unique strengths to partner on technology and mobility focused projects and programs," Whitmer said in a press release.
The Cisco CyberVets Scholarship program responds to two employment trends: recognizing the need for workers with tech skills and directing opportunity toward a group of talent that is traditionally undervalued. As employers battle skills gaps and low unemployment, moves like this one shared by Michigan and Cisco are becoming increasingly common.
Employers have been vocal about their need for tech talent. This problem exists within the tech world itself; 80% of decision makers within the engineering and technology sector agree their is a talent gap in their industry, according to a survey from Modis and General Assembly. But other fields are suffering from the shortage, too. Marketing organizations face a lack of talent with digital skills, a survey from The Economist Group and Digital Marketing Institute revealed.
Given the severity and breadth of this problem, it follows that businesses are trying to put more workers into the tech talent pipeline. As employers respond to a more general skills gap — one that encompasses the shortage of tech workers and a dearth of those with other soft and hard skills — employers are looking to many groups, including those who have served in the military, as new sources for talent.