With a growing list of partners, Wisconsin Tech Month 2022 (#WTM22) is shaping up to be a robust showing of technology leadership this year. #WTM22 is now spearheaded in partnership with the Milky Way Tech Hub, Latinos in Tech, Techquity, MARS Solutions Group and Wisconsin Voices. For context, in 2021, Governor Tony Evers proclaimed October as Wisconsin Tech Month.
Nadiyah Johnson, founder of the Milky Way Tech Hub, feels it is necessary to celebrate and amplify Wisconsin’s tech ecosystem. “We are excited to be working with organizations throughout the state to drive awareness around the importance of technology and highlight its role in decreasing racial wealth and achievement gaps,” says Johnson.
“While technology continues to power job growth and economic gains in the state of Wisconsin,” Johnson says, “It is necessary to not only see tech as a vehicle for economic growth but also as a way to address some of the pressing local issues in the state. The work of this year’s participating partners centers around creating a more equitable and inclusive place to live, work and play in the state of Wisconsin.”
In an effort to raise awareness and garner stronger representation in the state’s technology and innovation economy, the Milky Way Tech Hub has brought in additional partner organizations to strengthen and add new offerings to Wisconsin Tech Month. Latinos in Tech and MARS Solutions Group are new partners for Wisconsin Tech Month in 2022. Returning partners include Techquity and Wisconsin Voices.
The month will kick off with Milwaukee Tech Advocacy Week. Similar to last year, this will be a week of civic tech events that aim to equip the general public with the tools and knowledge necessary to find their voices in technology through policy and legislation. Wisconsin Voices, a statewide nonprofit that provides resources for civic engagement, will be heavily involved in Milwaukee Tech Advocacy Week.
Timothy P. Schindler, Co-Executive Director of Wisconsin Voices, says “there continues to be a severe gap in representation and resources for Black entrepreneurs and workers in the tech industry. Wisconsin Voices is excited to continue our partnership and support of Nadiyah Johnson, President and Founder of Milky Way Tech Hub, as a community-led effort to close this gap and enlist the creativity and talent of Black Milwaukeeans to make our city a national leader in IT innovation.”
During the month of October, there will be a variety of events throughout the state hosted by various groups and organizations. MARS Solutions Group is specifically partnering with the Milky Way Tech Hub to host a slate of events that focus on equitable workforce development.
“MARS is thrilled to be collaborating with the Milky Way Tech Hub to host a variety of programming, with a shared vision of advancing Wisconsin’s technology workforce through
reskilling and upskilling opportunities,” says Rashi Khosla, Principal at MARS.
Latinos in Tech (LIT) is eager to introduce their community to the many possibilities of tech across the state through this partnership. LIT aims to help Latin@s meet the growing demand for technologists as technology occupations are projected to increase by 13 percent by the year 2030.
“We are ready to bring our tech talents and network to Wisconsin Tech Month,” says LIT co-founder Ben Juarez. “It’s a wonderful opportunity for people to discover new tech, connect with other like minded individuals, and flaunt some of their own skills. There are so many paths and we are here for all of it!”
Events and programs throughout the month will touch on topics that range from smart cities solutions to workforce development and much more, all with the goal to unify Wisconsin’s tech ecosystem.
Techquity, an initiative of the United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County, is also working in partnership with the Milky Way Tech Hub to amplify a collective policy agenda that focuses on community broadband access and upskilling initiatives.
David Berka of Techquity shared, “I’m excited for Techquity to support and take part in Wisconsin Tech Month as a Milky Way Tech Hub member. Wisconsin Tech Month provides important opportunities for organizations and advocates to collaborate, join events, share resources, and raise awareness about our community’s most pressing issues related to economic and digital equity.”
Target host cities for Wisconsin Tech Month 2022 events include Madison, Racine, Kenosha, Beloit, Eau Claire and Green Bay.
A list of events will be shared in the upcoming weeks. To participate in the month of events sign up here: https://milkywaytechhub.typeform.com/to/o0swztkH
About Milky Way Tech Hub
The Milky Way Tech Hub is realizing the vision that Milwaukee is a tech hub where Black people and other people of color are able to thrive in the field of technology. Through a community-based grass-roots effort Milky Way Tech Hub has begun attracting national and international entrepreneurs to Milwaukee in addition to supporting the local talent already here. The Milky Way Tech Hub’s goal is to use its resources, programs, and community partnerships to create equitable opportunities within Milwaukee’s tech ecosystem.
About Latinos in Tech
Fostering the next generation of Latin@ tech professionals is just one of the reasons why Latinos in Tech (LIT) was launched in 2019. LIT aims to get Latin@s in the field together to support and develop one another through resource-sharing, special events, and professional development opportunities.
About MARS Solutions Group
MARS Solutions Group is a top talent supplier to several public sector organizations as well as Fortune 50/500/5000 companies providing staffing solutions and data & cloud consulting. Domain expertise includes IT, engineering, administration, finance, accounting, healthcare, insurance and manufacturing. MARS’s survival, success, and growth is attributed to the innovation that is embedded in its business model. In addition to staffing, MARS runs its very own reskilling program called MARS Returnship, and offers an employee recognition platform called Ovation.
About Wisconsin Voices
Wisconsin Voices works to create a Wisconsin where every person has the inspiration,resources, and access to fully participate in the power of a democracy that provides opportunities for all people to thrive.
We unify a dynamic network of partners in Wisconsin around achieving shared values and goals to build a better democracy for everyone. We build our partners’ capacity, amplify their impact, nurture new leadership, promote racial equity, champion transparent policies, and foster civic engagement so that everyone has an equal voice.
Techquity is a collective impact initiative of United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County. Techquity’s vision is simple: To ensure the digital equity and inclusion of every resident in Milwaukee, Waukesha, Ozaukee, and Washington counties. Techquity pursues digital equity and inclusion for all via four strategies: Broadband, Devices, Skills, and Advocacy. Through community partnership, Techquity connects stakeholders from all sectors, including business, government, education, and social services, to promote digital equity and inclusion.