ALBANY — A local nonprofit computer training provider on Thursday announced it had received $50,000 from Facebook, the first grant in the Capital Region from the social media giant.
AlbanyCanCode said the money will accelerate its expansion across the state and increase student access to its computer education and training programs. It is hoped that this move will give more people the skills they need to land jobs in the booming tech sector and provide companies more potential job candidates in a tight labor market.
The initial expansion attempts are underway in the Hudson Valley. The grant will fund curriculum development, instructor training, construction of employer and partner networks, student recruitment and marketing.
Lisa R. Harris, Facebook’s director of state and local economic development policy, said in a news release: “We are proud that this donation will allow more New Yorkers to have access to coding programs that help them reach personal career goals while strengthening the state’s economy.”
AlbanyCanCode also offers education and training in collaboration with educational institutions at all levels.
Thursday morning’s announcement of the Facebook grant was made during a ceremony at the Troy Innovation Garage, a flexible coworking space that serves the creative economy.
“After doing some coding programs online, I still didn’t have the confidence in my skills to look for a job in the tech industry,” he said. “AlbanyCanCode helped me strengthen my skills, network with local employers, and land my first job as a web developer. A year later, and I am back to teach the next round of AlbanyCanCode students!”
The 501(c)(3) organization started in 2016 with nine students and has since graduated more than 150. Its current class of 57 students is its largest yet. Graduates have landed jobs with employers including Accenture, Goldman Sachs, New York State Office of Information Technology Services, and MVP Healthcare, and have realized average annual salary increases of more than $15,000.