Canadian tech education company Lighthouse Labs, in partnership with the Employment Ontario project funded in part by the government of Canada and the government of Ontario, has launched an initiative to provide 250 eligible Ontarians with the skills they need to become web developers.

A similar pilot conducted last year focused solely on newcomer women in Ontario, and Lighthouse Labs says, as a result of the success of that program, this new iteration of the program is now open to a broader audience. The first cohort ran in May 2021 and the tech education company will continue to have monthly intakes of students until November 22, 2021.

Web development and newcomer women to be the focus

Dubbed Ontario WebDevelopers Network (OWN), the initiative will run until March 29, 2022 and provide eligible Ontarians, with a focus on newcomer women, with the skills needed (both technical and pre-employment/soft skills) to achieve careers in web development through a full scholarship for the online Lighthouse Labs Web Development Bootcamp.

The 12-week immersive bootcamp will train the participants in JavaScript and Node.js; ReactJS; databases and data modeling; HTML and CSS; software architecture; Ruby on Rails; testing; and computer science fundamentals. 

“The program is now open for all unemployed and underemployed Ontario residents to apply. However, we believe it’s important to nurture women in the tech workforce,” Jeremy Shaki, chief executive officer of Lighhouse Labs, told itbusiness.ca. “There are job opportunities, but it is often difficult for newcomer women especially to find the time, funding, and support to reskill into these positions, which is why we have made a dedicated effort to directly market to newcomer women communities.”

There is also additional wraparound support, with soft skills training, employer networking, and employment support, said Shaki. The participants will receive up to 60 hours of pre-employment skills training. After they complete the program, participants will receive an industry-recognized web development diploma from Lighthouse Labs as well as employer matching services. They will be connected with employers in full stack development, an in-demand occupation in Ontario.

“The pandemic has accelerated the future of work, and now more than ever, having technical skills is essential to entering the workforce,” said Shaki. “Ontario is home to some of the world’s most prominent tech hubs. Opportunities like the OWN Initiative will not only give participants the skills required to be part of this booming industry but will help strengthen and rebuild our economy.”

The tech education company says the program aims to help 90 per cent of participants find employment in Ontario’s digital economy within 180 days of program completion, with the help of over 500 employers.

Are you eligible to apply?

The initiative is open to Ontarians who are:

  • 18 years of age or older;
  • permanent resident, refugee status or Canadian citizenship holders (no study or work permit holders);
  • unemployed, precariously employed, or employed with low household income;
  • not participating in full-time training or education;
  • CLB 6 / IELTS 5.5 / TOEFL 46-59 and over; and
  • interested in pursuing a career in IT

Applicants are being enrolled for monthly cohorts and interested candidates can register here for a free information session to get started. The deadline to register is October 21, 2021.

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