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Houston Iron Yard Aims to Solve Tech Employment Problem

Houston Iron Yard Aims to Solve Tech Employment Problem

Anchored right in the heart of EaDo, START offers a professional and fun space for designers, developers, freelancers, entrepreneurs, employees and thought leaders to collaborate together in the technology space.

Joe Martin of the Houston Business Journal offers a glimpse into START resident The Iron Yard, an intensive coding school, following their inaugural graduation.

[quote]Last week’s inaugural graduation for the Iron Yard, a Greenville, South Carolina-based coding school with a campus in Houston, demonstrated a grassroots effort to fix a major problem in the city’s technology industry: employment.

Even though it was small — there were less than a dozen graduates in the Houston class — one industry leader says steps like these can eventually become major action.

“Having these guys at the ground level is huge,” said Apurva Sanghavi, the co-founder of Start Houston. “If they can keep the momentum going and classes full, it’s going to be impactful.”

It was the first time something like this had been done in Houston, so while it’s not on the scale that everyone would hope, it’s great that it even exists, said Sanghavi.

Houston tech companies need skilled talent, as well as oil and gas companies, health care companies and almost everyone else. The issue is so bad, companies are forced to outsource a lot of their employment from Austin, Dallas or elsewhere. If something isn’t done soon, it could affect the city’s overall growth, said Rich Winley, Iron Yard’s former Houston campus director.

“Houston is the innovative city,” Winley said. “We’re on everybody’s top ten list right now, and for us to not have a solid foundation of technologists moving forward, I think the city is going to get behind.”

The new graduates showed their class projects to a group of venture capitalists, potential employers, startups and interested community members. They ranged from a site that would be used by a plumber in La Porte to an e-commerce website for exotic jewelry.[/quote]

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