Year Up Bay Area Launches Silicon Valley Campus to Help Meet Demand for Skilled IT Talent

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Press Conference and Launch Party in San Jose on March 12

Responding to top technology executives’ struggles to find qualified entry-level talent, Year Up Bay Area is launching a second campus in Silicon Valley to provide local young adults with the technical and professional skills that companies are seeking.

“We’ve heard from LinkedIn, eBay, Facebook and numerous others that there aren’t enough workers with the right skills. The talent shortage is limiting growth and making U.S. companies less competitive globally,” said Jay Banfield, Founding Executive Director of Year Up Bay Area. “Meanwhile, there are nearly 18,000 young adults in Santa Clara County who aren’t currently working or in school. The new Silicon Valley campus will help bridge the gap by providing these young adults with the most sought-after skills, including critical problem solving, working in teams and communicating effectively.”

“We are extremely proud of our partnership with Year Up. Graduates from their program are qualified, motivated and excellent team players, and they have been terrific assets to our company,” said Meg Garlinghouse, Head of Social Impact for LinkedIn. “By expanding into Silicon Valley, Year Up Bay Area is helping LinkedIn and other companies in the area gain access to valuable talent.”

LinkedIn, Facebook, JPMorgan Chase, NetApp and eBay are the founding corporate partners of the Silicon Valley campus, and will take on Year Up Bay Area students as interns during the second half of the yearlong program. JPMorgan Chase and Tipping Point Community were the founding donors.

As part of the launch, Year Up Bay Area is holding a press conference and party on March 12 at the Silicon Valley campus, located at 100 West Fernando Street in San Jose. The theme of the party is “Advancing the Culture of Innovation,” and celebrates Year Up’s role at the intersection of corporate America, philanthropy and education. Top Silicon Valley executives, including Facebook CIO Tim Campos, will attend, as will the first cohort of students, who began classes on March 4, and Year Up Bay Area alumni.

One such alumnus, Jay Hammonds, graduated from Year Up Bay Area in 2012. He once hoped to become a grocery bagger at Safeway. Now, he is providing IT support to Facebook’s executive team, including Sheryl Sandberg and Mark Zuckerberg. Jay and hundreds of other young adults have launched their tech careers through Year Up Bay Area, which provides students with a cutting-edge curriculum. This past year, students at the San Francisco campus had the opportunity to take advantage of a Mozilla Networking elective, an Agile project management class and a seminar with Zynga’s IT/Quality Assurance team.

Lauded by Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton for its proven, scalable model, Year Up is a national nonprofit organization that provides urban young adults with an intensive, yearlong training program and career-focused education in growing professional industries. Year Up helps young people not enrolled in school or participating in the labor market cross the Opportunity Divide to access living-wage employment and higher education. In turn, companies gain access to a pipeline of high-quality entry-level talent.

Year Up Bay Area, one of ten Year Up sites across the country, was launched in San Francisco in 2008. The program provides local young adults, ages 18-24, with technical, professional and communication skills including: desktop and network support; software installation; business writing; time management; and working in teams. Students at the Silicon Valley campus will earn up to fourteen college credits from Foothill College for completing their coursework during the first six months of the program. The next six months consist of an internship at a corporate partner firm such as Facebook, LinkedIn, JPMorgan Chase, NetApp and eBay. Eighty-eight percent of Year Up Bay Area alumni are employed or in school full-time within four months of graduation, earning an average hourly wage of $16.38, or approximately $30,000 a year. Learn more about Year Up Bay Area by following us on Twitter @YearUpBayArea and on Facebook.

About Year Up Inc.
Year Up's mission is to close the Opportunity Divide by providing urban young adults with the skills, experience, and support that will empower them to reach their potential through professional careers and higher education. Year Up achieves this mission through a high support, high expectation model that combines marketable job skills, stipends, internships and college credits. Its holistic approach focuses on students' professional and personal development to place these young adults on a viable path to economic self-sufficiency. Year Up currently serves more than 1,500 students a year at sites in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Miami, New York City, Providence, San Francisco Bay Area, the National Capital Region, and Puget Sound (Seattle). To learn more, visit or

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Idelle Delapena
Year Up Bay Area
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