For Release: Immediate – Wednesday, July 21, 2021
Driven by Rapid Growth, AlbanyCanCode Rebrands as CanCode Communities, Announces Creation of Four New Affiliates in New York and Massachusetts
Launched in 2016, the nonprofit organization training non-traditional talent for tech careers now operates in NY’s Capital Region, Hudson and Mohawk Valleys, the NYC metro, and The Berkshires
Albany, NY – Five years after its launch as AlbanyCanCode – and building on its rapid expansion into Kingston, Saratoga and Herkimer, New York, the New York City metro, and The Berkshires of Western Massachusetts – the nonprofit organization training non-traditional talent for software career opportunities today announced its rebrand as CanCode Communities, the addition of four new affiliates, and the unveiling of its new website at www.cancode.org.
“The birth of CanCode Communities represents a significant milestone and, most importantly, recognizes the growing impact of our efforts on the people, organizations and regions we’re privileged to serve,” said Annmarie Lanesey, Founder and CEO of CanCode Communities. “We’re thrilled to extend our mission of empowering underserved and underemployed individuals with digital skills, creating new opportunities for exciting tech careers, filling the tech talent pipeline to meet the needs of employers, and enriching communities through partnership and collaboration.”
The organization’s swift growth has been spurred by a $50,000 investment from Facebook, announced in January 2020, which was targeted to scale tech training courses and drive additional workforce and economic development opportunities. KingstonCanCode was launched that June, followed in November by a partnership with the New York State Office for New Americans that recently expanded into NewAmericansCanCode. Now, further expansion has enabled the creation of SaratogaCanCode, HerkimerCanCode, NewYorkCanCode, and BerkshiresCanCode.
Lisa R. Harris, Director, State and Local Economic Development Policy for Facebook, said, “CanCode Communities has been instrumental in helping people who may not otherwise have access to computer code training and education compete in the digital economy. CanCode Communities is expanding opportunity by ensuring the technology sector has a more diverse and talent-fueled workforce.”
In addition to expansion support, the rebranding effort was funded through a $10,000 grant provided by Saratoga National Bank.
“We are very excited to give our support to CanCode Communities for underserved and underemployed individuals seeking tech career employment,” said Saratoga National Bank Community Development Officer Kate Otis. “The expansion of this program aligns directly with our philanthropic efforts and will help provide economic stimulus to the communities we serve.”
Within the CanCode ecosystem of regional programs, CanCode Communities serves as the overarching organization. Each entity carries a name that reinforces its community presence and partnership, aimed to address local needs and aspirations.
Joining AlbanyCanCode, KingstonCanCode, and NewAmericansCanCode are:
· SaratogaCanCode. Working with educational partner SUNY Adirondack, and supported by funding partner Saratoga National Bank, classes start this week for SaratogaCanCode’s initial course: the Workforce Readiness Academies Program (WRAP), which provides free computer coding classes for underserved individuals.
· HerkimerCanCode. Working with educational partner Herkimer College, and funding partner the Community Foundation for Herkimer and Oneida Counties, an initial employer roundtable is scheduled for Thursday, July 28 at 3 p.m. Hosted by Herkimer College and conducted both in-person and virtually, the event seeks to identify the community’s specific tech talent needs.
· NewYorkCanCode. Working with Microsoft through the Accelerate: New York initiative, NewYorkCanCode offers computer coding education and training courses to provide a pathway from skilling to employment for community members in the tri-state area.
· BerkshiresCanCode. Working with educational partner Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, and community partners Berkshires Innovation Center and 1Berkshire, BerkshiresCanCode has conducted its inaugural employer roundtable to determine the talent needs of regional businesses, with courses now being planned to address those needs.
As these new affiliates identify, plan and provide courses that address their particular needs, classes continue to be offered to students in New York’s Capital Region and Hudson Valley. This fall’s course schedule includes:
- ·Front-End Web Development (link to interest form)
· Microsoft Azure & PowerPlatform (link to interest form)
· Python for Data Analytics (link to interest form)
· Additional courses will be announced in the coming weeks
Additionally, CanCode Communities has delivered digital literacy training to hundreds of adults seeking a place in the technology-driven, virtual business environment, and conducted hands-on K-12 coding programs that have served thousands of students.
“As the information economy accelerates and the business world rapidly evolves, the timing for CanCode Communities could not be more opportune,” said Miriam Dushane, Board Chair of CanCode Communities. “We are well-positioned to unlock tech career opportunities for those who are too often overlooked, and to help develop a skilled digital workforce that lifts up businesses, fosters economic growth, and improves quality of life in our communities.”
Formed to shift the mindset about who can work in technology, CanCode Communities designs and delivers computer coding and workforce training courses to develop non-traditional talent, helping to build a vibrant, inclusive tech talent pipeline aligned with the needs of employers, educators, and the community in general. For more information, visit www.cancode.org.
Perspectives from our Partners at CanCode Communities
SUNY Adirondack Assistant Dean for Continuing Education and Workforce Innovation Caelynn Prylo said, “SUNY Adirondack is committed to offering workforce training programs that meet the needs of local employers, students and our regional economy. CanCode Communities is a longstanding partner who shares our mission of educational opportunity and access. We’re so excited to see their continued success and the development of the SaratogaCanCode community. Their partnership has been integral in developing our WRAP IT training program, currently available at no cost to unemployed and underemployed New Yorkers. We look forward to working with them to continue to offer in-demand IT training programs to students in Saratoga and beyond.”
Herkimer College Associate Dean of Academic Affairs William McDonald said, “CanCode Communities is poised to become a key provider of workforce development in the Mohawk Valley region. We are excited to partner with them on this new initiative.”
Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties President and CEO Alicia Dicks said, “Our partnership with CanCode Communities is the first step to what will transform the talent and employment opportunities available in our area. Developing our workforce involves two sides: employers and job seekers. This whole concept gives us the ability to build relationships and connect with these local businesses, while also making careers in the technology sector attainable for all.”
Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts President James F. Birge, Ph.D. said, “MCLA is proud to collaborate with the Berkshire Innovation Center in welcoming CanCode Communities to the Berkshires. We look forward to partnering with and supporting their efforts as we continue to grow innovative educational opportunities for the region.”
Berkshire County Superintendents’ Roundtable Executive Secretary William Ballen said, “The Berkshire County Superintendents’ Roundtable looks forward to continuing to develop our relationship with CanCode Communities as it transitions to Berkshires Can Code. Berkshire County Superintendents recognize the value and benefit to our K-12 districts that BerkshiresCanCode will provide through professional development, resource development and direct service to our students and educators throughout Berkshire County.”
Berkshires Innovation Center Executive Director Ben Sosne said, “We were introduced to the CanCode organization by James Kupernik and the team at VidMob and were immediately impressed with the tremendous impact they had made in the Albany region. We were eager to bring their passion and creativity to the Berkshires and are grateful to all those local stakeholders who have embraced them and supported their growth and expansion. We look forward to partnering and helping them make that same meaningful impact in our community.”
1Berkshire Director of Economic Development Ben Lamb said, “BerkshiresCanCode aligns extremely well with our Berkshire Blueprint 2.0. It tackles major cross-cutting regional issues, including workforce training for high-paying job sectors, and supporting entrepreneurs in a variety of high-growth and emergent industries. We are extremely excited to help facilitate the development and launch of this program as the Regional Economic Development Organization of the Berkshires.”
New York State Secretary of State Rossana Rosado, who oversees the Office for New Americans, said, “The Office for New Americans has worked closely with AlbanyCanCode to offer key training and services to New York’s immigrant communities to address the digital divide that was only heightened throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. I am thrilled to see this organization is growing and evolving into CanCode Communities because that means they are expanding the employment options for many new Americans who are now better prepared to reimagine, rebuild and renew New York’s economy. I look forward to our continued partnership and expanding our reach with the great work of CanCode Communities.”
About CanCode Communities
A 501(c)3 nonprofit founded in 2016, CanCode Communities develops non-traditional talent and advocates for a vibrant, inclusive tech talent pipeline. The organization designs and delivers workforce training courses, hands-on K-12 coding programs, and community code literacy workshops in alignment with the needs of employers, educators, talent and the community in general. Its mission is to shift mindset about who can work in technology, remove cultural and economic barriers to joining the tech workforce, and establish and promote pathways to tech careers throughout the region. For more, visit www.cancode.org.
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