i.c.stars | * Milwaukee was established to create economic opportunity for underserved communities by bridging disconnected young adults with the high growth tech sector. They accomplish this by working to activate a community of change agents to power social and economic freedom while providing young adults with employment opportunities and preparing them for community-based advocacy.
“We are really focusing on underrepresented demographics in Milwaukee where we’ve seen industry leave and have seen the devastation that that has caused.” States Sarah Dollhausen-Clark, General Manager for i.c.stars | * Milwaukee.
Their program begins with an intense four-month project-based internship at i.c.stars. During that time, participants are provided training in coding, information technology, and leadership training, but they also offer soft skills that incorporate diversity, equity, and inclusion. In addition to the training, they are given a stipend of $150 per week to offset their living expenses while in the program.
Following the initial four months, participants are placed in a residency program with partnering organizations to gain additional experience in professional development, financial literacy, professional communications, social media best practices, mentoring and access to wrap-around support.
A unique aspect of this program incorporates networking with business leaders in the community. On a daily basis these leaders enjoy a cup of tea or coffee and share experiences they have learned throughout their careers, provide professional wisdom, and make connections with participants.
“I feel as though the biggest impact i.c.stars has made was giving me the opportunity to build a network with so many executives from the local Milwaukee area,” shares a program participant.
Following completion of the program, graduates have seen a 300% increase in their wages.
“Our focus is to place our graduates in the tech industry that will provide an instant economic impact, but also builds and grows generational wealth by providing a gateway into an industry that allows for the opportunity for growth.” Continues Dollhausen-Clark.
Congratulations i.c.stars | * Milwaukee!