Capital Region Cares Capital Region Cares 2017-2018 - Page 78

n Feature in software, electronics, telecommunications and medical COLLABORATION IS KEY technology operating in the area. In addition to providing education, part of the academy’s For brands that require employees to have technical mission is to create tech opportunities via collaboration skills, the academy is a boon. With companies like High with other local programs. They partner with the Placer Sierra Electronics, Clear Capital, Gyro-Stabilized Systems School for Adults, Nevada Union Adult School and Sierra and Linear Technology — all technology companies based College to host specific classes, as well as receive funding in Nevada County — job seekers have a robust market ready from organizations including NoRTEC, Connecting Point to hire those with strong tech abilities. and the Nevada County Information and General Services Traitware is a cyber-security software company based Agency. in Nevada City. CEO Bert Spencer sends employees to take The academy benefits from subsidized rental space pro- classes at the academy to improve their capabilities as soft- vided by the Green Screen Institute facility and the lab is ware developers. accessible to students and alumni like Moore, who want The courses helped his employee Carson Hawley ad- to work on project development. The academy has also ex- vance from a home-schooled high school graduate to a fully panded to offer on-site courses in the offices of employers qualified Android developer. across the county. Another partner, the Nevada County “Attending classes at the academy gave me the strong, Tech Connection, is a new community initiative solely fo- core knowledge I needed to pursue my goals,” says Haw- cused on raising awareness of all regional technology ini- ley, now a junior software tiatives. The efforts of the developer. “I reference the Tech Connection reflect courses I took on cyber-se- the big picture goals of the curity and UX [user expe- academy. rience] design in my daily One program offered programming.” through the Tech Connec- Those learning basic tion is a local directory of digital skills for the first tech businesses, freelance time aren’t the only ones talent and educational that benefit from the acade- training providers. They my’s training programs. As also aggregate tech events, an engineer for more than meetups, jobs and intern- — Jonathan Palmer, chief technology officer, Autometrix 30 years, Alan Moore grew ships and post them to the up and worked in Silicon Tech Connection website. Valley for most of his life The goal is to highlight before relocating to Nevada City. A software developer, he’s these activities for potential employees or companies re- since founded his own foundation, Co-op Source. searching the region online. Moore enrolled in the virtual reality game development “We’re trying to boost the public perception of the area class offered at the academy because he wanted more ex- so people are aware of the opportunity that already exists perience working with a particular program called Unity, a here,” says Palmer, who in addition to employing a grad- game development engine also used to build virtual or aug- uate of the academy at Autometrix is active with the Tech mented reality applications. Connection. “If people understand that there are a variety “I’m convinced that virtual and augmented reality will of possible employment opportunities in the area, they may change our relationship with computing, and getting in on be more willing to relocate here.” n the ground floor with this somewhat new technology is very exciting,” he says. Trish Moratto is a communications consultant who specializ- After the class, Moore started an augmented and virtu- es in public relations, social media strategy, copywriting and al reality development meetup group. The academy allows journalism. She is based among the pine trees in Grass Valley. the group to use its lab and equipment. “We’re trying to boost the public perception of the area so people are aware of the opportunity that already exists here.” 78 CAPITAL REGION CARES 2017 | comstocksmag.com