Winston-Salem, N.C. (June 2, 2021) – The Cybersecurity Youth Apprenticeship Initiative (CYAI) is partnering with Goodwill Industries of Northwest North Carolina (Goodwill) to provide information technology (IT) registered apprenticeship programming to youth ages 16-21, with a focus on women and individuals of color.

The Youth IT Apprenticeship program provides youth aged 16-21 with the IT skills, credentials and workplace mentoring needed to address the demand for IT generalists and computer programmers in North Carolina. Goodwill will identify up to 60 participants from local high schools who are about to graduate, and some out of school youth who have an interest in the IT field. This will lead to an opportunity to pursue postsecondary education and employment.

“We’re excited for this new program because it benefits both local youth and the IT and cybersecurity industries, which will have a huge need for trained workers over the next several years,” says Deon Carter, NCWorks project director and lead for the apprenticeship program for Goodwill. “Youth can get paid work experience while taking classes, and when they complete the apprenticeship, they’ll have professional IT credentials that they can carry with them anywhere in the U.S. and find work.”

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, computer and IT occupations are expected to grow faster than average over the next decade. The bureau projects that IT occupations will add more than 531,000 jobs between 2019 and 2029, mostly stemming from cloud computing, data storage and information security.

“The Goodwill Industries of Northwest North Carolina new pre-apprenticeship program indicates a clear commitment to youth and will develop basic foundational skills needed for a successful apprenticeship experience,” says Mark Ouellette, project manager at CYAI. “Their programming provides youth with stability, the ability to earn while they learn, and connects local youth to in-demand jobs that can lead to a long-term career in cybersecurity.”

Students ages 16-21 may apply for the apprenticeship program online at or call Sam Paolelli at (336) 724-3625 ext. 11286 for information.

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Cybersecurity Youth Apprenticeship Initiative (CYAI) is funded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Employment and Training Administration (ETA) Office of Apprenticeship (OA). CYAI promotes sustainable development of cybersecurity apprenticeship programs for youth aged 16-21 and is administered by ICF. The goal of the initiative is to create at least 900 new cybersecurity apprenticeships for youth by 2024.

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