Community

A new program will pay Louisville residents to learn software development, and it could expand to teach more people next year.

The program, a partnership between local software development company Interapt and the University of Louisville, is called Louisville Skills. The program will select 25 people and pay them $100 a week as they’re trained on software development. Participants will also get financial literacy and life skills help through a partnership with the Louisville Urban League. It’s funded by a $325,000 Humana grant awarded earlier this year.

Interapt Training Program Manager Marnix Warren said managers will pick overlooked communities for the program in order to fill jobs and give people opportunities they might not usually have. For that reason, they’re giving priority to people living in west Louisville neighborhoods.

“We are a software development shop and the need that we identified was that we couldn’t find the talent,” Warren said. “These are great-paying jobs that don’t necessarily need a four-year degree. So if we can get them, in three months or four months, trained up, then we can get people in these high-moving careers.”

Warren said around 200 people have applied for the program so far, but this isn’t the first time Interapt has offered a program like this.

The company has offered other training programs in Louisville, Eastern Kentucky and Atlanta, and Warren said about 90 percent of people who were trained found work after their program. Avis Wooden graduated from the Atlanta program last year and found work as a software development apprentice for Interapt weeks after that. Wooden said the program gave her a chance to start a career.

“College isn’t for everybody. And I think even those people who [don’t] go want to go have a four-year-degree should have opportunities,” Wooden said. “This gives others a chance to, you know, make a career – do something they want.”

Warren said if the program is successful, Interapt may consider expanding it next year. Applications for the program close August 9. You can find that application at Interapt’s website here. The program starts September 30.

Disclosure: Interapt CEO Ankur Gopal is a member of the Louisville Public Media Board of Directors.

Kyeland Jackson is an Associate Producer for WFPL News.