JPMorgan Chase recently awarded a $150,000 grant to the Informatics Diversity-Enhanced Workforce (iDEW) program managed by the Indiana University School of Informatics and Computing at IUPUI. This is the third gift in three years received from Chase, which is a cofounder and continued supporter of the unique IT training and education program.
The funding supports program assistants and undergraduate student mentors, finances certification training, and provides experiential learning opportunities for high school students, such as field trips and summer workshops.
iDEW began as a partnership between the IU School of Informatics and Computing at IUPUI and JPMorgan Chase in order to create a holistic pedagogical and career pathway model for IT. At the heart of the initiative is delivering a knowledgeable workforce in the IT sector while embracing IT career opportunities for underrepresented minorities.
“With over half a million new IT jobs projected by 2026, we and our sponsoring partners feel a responsibility to prepare the workforce of the future,” said Mathew Palakal, iDEW program director and executive associate dean of the IU School of Informatics and Computing at IUPUI. “We want to ensure the success of these high school students by inspiring their interest in informatics and computing and providing them with the necessary skills to secure these jobs. This gift from JPMorgan Chase will help us continue to fulfill that goal.”
The year-round iDEW program currently benefits four Indianapolis high schools—Providence Cristo Rey, Arsenal Technical, Pike, and, most recently, Northwest. Two hundred forty students, in grades 9 through 12, are participating this year in modules that include robotics, coding, and Internet of Things. This is the third year iDEW has been operating in Indianapolis.
The IU School of Informatics and Computing at IUPUI faculty, administration, and students work with the school principals, teachers, and academic counselors from these four selected schools to develop and implement a successful enrichment program that focuses on STEM. The learning modules are highly engaging and educational, with the primary focus of instilling interest in STEM areas, and a primary objective of advancing these students into a college education and a career in informatics.