Wilson Sheehan Foundation Invests in Skills Training Nonprofit Per Scholas Columbus to Help Cultivate Next Generation of Local Tech Leaders

Wilson Sheehan Foundation Invests in Skills Training Nonprofit Per Scholas Columbus to Help Cultivate Next Generation of Local Tech Leaders

Foundation provides $150K grant to create more pathways of opportunity for low-income Columbusites through no-cost, in-demand tech skills training

Columbus, Ohio – Today, national tech training nonprofit Per Scholas announced a new $150,000 grant from the Wilson Sheehan Foundation to provide more low-income Columbusites free access to IT training and career support. The grant will allow Per Scholas to serve over 100 students this year, providing them with in-demand skills that will enable them to get high-paying tech jobs and move into the middle class.

“Per Scholas Columbus is incredibly grateful to have the support of the Wilson Sheehan Foundation, which will enable further access to life-changing career opportunities for disadvantaged members of our communities. In the months and years ahead, we look forward to bolstering our enrollment capabilities, helping more people break into the innovation economy while also helping local Columbus businesses grow and thrive,” said Per Scholas Columbus Managing Director Toni Cunningham.

The grant from the Wilson Sheehan Foundation will be used to support the program’s IT skills training curriculum. It will also help the nonprofit’s ability to offer career development instruction and job placement services, including establishing direct-hiring opportunities through partnerships with local employers.

“We’re excited to offer our support to Per Scholas Columbus as they continue to build their operations. Over the years, Per Scholas Columbus has delivered practical, meaningful results for the Columbus community and elevated the lives of its graduates while helping local businesses successfully grow. We look forward to seeing Per Scholas develop the next wave of skilled tech workers and keep the Columbus economy moving forward.” said Maureen Sheehan Massaro, Executive Director of the Wilson Sheehan Foundation.

Since launching in 2012, Per Scholas Columbus has provided IT training programs to more than 460 local residents. The program features a hands-on, skills-based IT curriculum taught by experienced professionals. The nonprofit specifically serves low-income individuals interested in pursuing a career in technology but lacking access to traditional career pathways. Per Scholas has an 89% placement rate for graduates and on average, incoming students go from $6,800 per year an annual salary of $36,000. Last year’s students contributed more than $2 million in earned wages to the regional economy.

About Per Scholas

Per Scholas is a national nonprofit that drives positive and proven social change in communities across the country. Through rigorous and tuition-free technology training and professional development, we prepare motivated and curious adults who are unemployed or underemployed for successful careers as technology professionals, and we create onramps to businesses in need of their talents. Platform by Per Scholas works hand in hand with corporations to design customized training tracks for partners seeking to hire diverse and qualified talent. Today, Per Scholas provides solutions in six cities across the country: Atlanta, GA; Greater Cincinnati, OH; Columbus, OH; Dallas, TX; the National Capital Region; and New York, NY. To date, Per Scholas has trained 8,000 individuals, helping them build lasting, life changing skills and careers in technology.

About the Wilson Sheehan Foundation

The Wilson Sheehan Foundation exists to help advance lasting, positive change in the world, starting with the family. With the belief that strong families build strong communities, our goal is to empower people in low income populations to achieve financial stability. We believe that education is the gateway to a better life and stronger communities. We seek to support initiatives that help people develop strong, marketable skills that are transferable to school, work, and life. By developing critical life skills, it is possible for families to create economic self-sufficiency in the hope of breaking stubbornly persistent cycles of poverty. We are also interested in supporting initiatives that develop critical “soft” skills such as personal and emotional development, self-discovery, and personal responsibility, and promote integrity, the capacity for creativity, and commitment to a world that is larger than self.

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