IBM Launches New Collar Apprenticeship Accelerator for IBM Z


IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced an expansion of the company’s IBM Z skills initiatives to include a new nationwide IT Infrastructure apprenticeship accelerator program – establishing an onramp for IBM Z Ecosystem clients looking to hire new collar talent across system administrators, system programmers and application developer roles.

Delivered in collaboration with Franklin Apprenticeships and the Urban Institute, this new collar IBM Z skills training program will recruit and develop candidates from across the United States with no previous technology experience required.

The program provides participating IBM Z clients with a no-charge apprenticeship accelerator. Coupled with IBM’s apprenticeship model serving to establish foundational knowledge, clients and new apprentices can gain the benefit of Franklin Apprenticeships experience as an intermediary. Throughout the program, apprentices receive learning paths based on joint client-defined competency standards, more than 300 hours of virtual training, access to subject matter expertise and mentorship from IBM, and dedicated success managers.

IBM also is announcing today that M&T Bank has signed on as the inaugural employer partner for this program. As part of the program – which M&T has branded as its Z Development Program (ZDP) Mainframe Apprenticeship – M&T Bank plans grow their skilled, diverse talent pool in the Buffalo, New York area and will accelerate the bank’s digital transformation with the hire of 10 apprentices anticipated to start in January 2021.

As part of the pre-apprenticeship program that IBM will provide in support of each client’s IBM Z apprenticeship initiative, each candidate will receive an introduction to computer science, complete Master the Mainframe levels one and two, and complete a curriculum of z/OS practitioner training – all remotely. Following the pre-apprenticeship, candidates will be presented to employers for hiring into a one year earn-while-you-learn apprenticeship with additional technical and on-the-job training. Upon successful completion, all apprentices will earn a credential recognized by the U.S. Department of Labor. 

IBM’s new collar apprenticeship program, launched in 2017, provides learn-while-you-earn skills training and career development opportunities for both students and working professionals. The apprenticeship accelerator builds on these programs and partnerships to expand IBM’s model to additional employers and create more opportunities for Americans to build in demand skills.



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