Nearly eight years ago, Tyler O’Neal was working for a small, family-owned construction business when the recession hit. Always interested in computers, he decided to pursue a new career in technology.
In 2010, he started at Garmin International Inc. as a product support specialist. Not long after, he realized the power of education in climbing the ladder and earned his associate degree in IT with an emphasis in information systems technology from Johnson County Community College (JCCC). This led to his advancement to his current role as software engineer tool support developer.
The Mid-America Regional Council reports that the number of 25- to 34-year-olds with bachelor's degrees in either science, technology, engineering or mathematics — the STEM fields — has grown by 20 percent in Kansas City since 2000. Nevertheless, the region still trails Oklahoma City, Denver, St. Louis and other peers in having a robust STEM workforce.
As Ed Eilert completes his eight-year term as chair of the JCERT Authority and hands the leadership reigns to Overland Park Mayor Carl Gerlach, the two recap the organization’s accomplishments to date and give a glimpse into future endeavors.
By Dr. Janice Barrow, associate dean for academic affairs and executive education
Greater Kansas City needs more highly educated and STEM-qualified workers in order for the region to stay competitive and meet current and future workforce demand, according to findings of a 2014 report by the Brookings Institute. Additional reports from the Kansas City Area Life Sciences Institute and KC Rising reinforce those findings and note that similar-sized cities are outperforming our region in having a pipeline of STEM-educated talent.
What business challenges does your organization face? Mergers and acquisitions? Identifying new markets? Budgeting? Staffing? An increasingly diverse workforce? A relentless need to increase revenues and minimize costs? All of these?
Man’s best friend may be turning the tables on the way doctors treat some cancers in humans. Ongoing research at the University of Kansas and the University of Kansas Medical Center using injectable targeted chemotherapy is showing great promise in the treatment of a variety of cancers in dogs and could lead to testing in humans. The JCERT tax supports this research.
Technology affords us ever-evolving conveniences and efficiencies, as well as risks.
October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month; however, heightened vigilance is relevant year-round. In fact, last week the director of the Central Intelligence Agency, John Brennan, said the United States now faces an “unprecedented range of threats” in the digital domain.
With every threat, there is an opportunity. As cybersecurity dangers increase, so does the demand for IT professionals with specialized education and skills.