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SAIT launches unique programming to create more accessible and collaborative pathways into tech

A female instructor looking at a computer monitor with a male student

Calgary (Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2022) — New programming from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) is raising awareness about the vacant roles in Calgary’s talent-hungry tech scene.

The 12-week applied industry bootcamps, which include Product Management, User Experience Design and Product Go-To-Market Strategy, are aimed at individuals looking to pivot into the sector quickly without learning how to code, giving the talent pipeline a much-needed boost.

Students enrolled in each of the SAIT programs will intersect simultaneously and collaborate with developers and industry partners during the capstone project component of each course, much like they would in a real-world setting.

According to a recent Leger report, the industry has a long way to go to make Canadians aware of the jobs in technology.

According to the report, “Among 12 different tech jobs shown to Canadians, less than half knew “a little” or “a lot” about them. Low knowledge levels are likely a barrier to entering the tech industry.”

“We consulted numerous companies and they consistently stressed the importance of increasing access and filling both the technical and interpersonal skills gaps needed to thrive in tech,” says Lora Bucsis, Manager, Digital Programs from SAIT’s Centre for Continuing Education and Professional Studies.

“This flexible and collaborative delivery model will help us do just that, giving industry a much-needed talent boost in a short amount of time. People often think a role in tech means learning how to code, which isn’t always the reality. We need people to understand roles in product management, market strategy and user experience are just as critical.”

The report also found Canadians are more likely to consider a job in tech when they are mentored by someone already in the industry — a key component of SAIT’s new programming.

SAIT collaborated with prominent Calgary-based Tacit Edge to create the Product Management element of the programs.

Tacit Edge co-founder Renee Matsalla says the partnership with SAIT means opening up potential for industry and those eager to pivot their careers into technology.

“What the SAIT programming means for industry and the tech sector regionally and further afield is attraction and retention of qualified product managers, a skill set which impacts not only the technology sector but all industries,” Matsalla says.

This collaborative, accessible approach to SAIT programming is helping break down barriers for equity-deserving groups in technology.

Applications for the three bootcamps, starting Saturday, Jan. 14, are now open.

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