Job Incubators for the New Economy
Updated: Sep 22
Many people are not aware that high paying technology jobs are being created in Hawaii and that a college degree in computer sciences is not always required.
Tech jobs provide good income without regard to location of the business owner or employee. A 2013 study called “Developing a Shared Agenda for the North Shore of Oahu Economic Vitality and Community Well-Being,” validates that Professional & Technical Services job growth rate has exceeded all but two other regional job clusters: Sustainable Agriculture & Working Landscapes and North Shore Experience.
Earlier this month, I participated in an Innovation Crawl around Honolulu to see first-hand how the High Technology Development Corporation (HTDC) and other local accelerator programs are fostering new businesses to diversify our local economy. We met some of Hawaii’s brightest tech and innovation companies who compete on the global market in medical sciences, film production, satellite tracking systems and much more.
We visited start-up businesses in the Manoa Innovation Center (MIC) and learned that HTDC’s goal is to help create 80,000 new tech and innovation jobs earning $80,000 or more by 2030. That may seem like a lot of new jobs, but the work place is rapidly changing and it will be very different in 15 years. Remember that the first IPhone was sold only eight years ago.
We visited several other exciting job accelerators with real life success stories. Energy Excelerator has helped secure $15 million for 32 diverse alternative energy startups who then raised $223 million in follow on funding. Blue Startups is a technology accelerator founded by Henk Rogers, founder of Blue Planet Software, the sole agent of Tetris. XLR8UH educates, mentors, and invests in the University of Hawaii’s world-class research and talent.
For those with very little to moderate programming skills, DevLeague is a computer programming boot camp where students accrue hundreds of hours of coding while learning and mastering modern web development techniques and technologies. This is an intensive, tuition based education with needs-based scholarships available. To date, every graduate has found a job in the tech industry.
For those who are looking for tech jobs right now, HTDC and Kamaaina Careers are sponsoring a Holiday Tech Job Fair on December 29, 2015, from 5-8 p.m., at the Japanese Cultural Center, 2454 S. Beretania St. Admission is free and registration details are at HTDC.org.
Finally, Wetware Wednesday is dedicated to software developers interested in meeting in a casual and friendly environment to share ideas, collaborate and spark new opportunities. They meet on the last Wednesday of each month from 6-8 pm at the MIC. More details are available on FaceBook/wetwarewednesday. If you have a good idea and committed work ethic, there are resources to help make your plan a reality.