May 9, 2013 admin

Tech Summit Kicks Off In Austin

President Obama is set to visit Austin on Thursday — with an expected focus on local technology training — leaders gathered downtown at the third annual Tech Summit.

More than 150 entrepreneurs, company founders and CEO’s gathered Wednesday at the Moody Theater in downtown Austin. Jobs, education and company growth were some of the key topics of conversation.

The summit this year is highlighting the thousands of tech jobs expected to hit our area by 2017.

The challenge lies in finding ways to develop and bring in a tech skilled workforce to fill the jobs.

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Brian Kelsey, an economist for Civic Analytics, says the demand for a skilled workforce is high — and the 9,000 jobs expected by 2017 may not be accurate.

“That’s really just a minimal number because we are also going to have to replace workers who move away or retire or leave the industry. Clearly we do not have enough workers here currently to fill every single new tech job in the economy,” said Kelsey. “We have wonderful training programs at colleges like ACC but they can only fill a certain percentage of those new jobs. It’s about recruiting people from outside , making sure the tech talent we have here stays and it’s growing our own talent pipe line.”

Many companies are working with colleges through mentoring programs that can give students the experience and head start they need to get their foot in the door.

Business leaders we spoke with say tech schools, like the one President Obama will visit this Thursday in Manor, will help foster the future tech labor force.

Angel Covarrubias, KEYE-TV Austin, Tech Summit Kicks Off In Austin