ANN ARBOR (WWJ) — Skilled computer programmers in Southeast Michigan have an opportunity to take part in an advanced IT training program offered by the Michigan Economic Development Corp., Ann Arbor Spark, Michigan Works and Washtenaw Community College. The Spark 2013 Fall Shifting Code Java program, scheduled to start Sept. 25 and run through Nov. 25, will train 12 to 16 participants in advanced JavaScript at a site in Ann Arbor or at Washtenaw Community College. The initiative will help experienced programmers develop critical skills needed to meet the demands of local employers.

“While there has long been a need to develop a more robust IT talent pipeline in southeast Michigan, Shifting Code takes a significantly different approach to addressing this need,” said MEDC president and CEO Michael A. Finney. “Having workforce training programs that are responsive to the needs of industry is part of our commitment to reinvent government and create more and better jobs in Michigan. This program is 100 percent demand-side, employer-driven, and project based.”

The course will cover Java with advanced topics including JavaScript, JQuery and JDBC. The program will include an assessment, comprehensive classroom training, mentorship, coaching and a hands-on coding project component with a local employer. By the end of the training, participants are transformed into more adaptable professionals with experiences, knowledge and skills related to their new roles. The program cost is $150, to be paid at the first class.

Candidates should have programming and coding experience and an understanding of data and database structures. Trainees will be selected for the program on a competitive basis. The deadline to apply is midnight on Monday, Sept. 9.

Shifting Code was launched by MEDC in January 2012 to provide advanced short-term training opportunities for IT and high-tech professionals looking to upgrade their advanced skills in high-demand technical computer systems and software development. Additional cohorts are currently under development and will be announced at the Shifting Code website at


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