INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis native Kelli Jones is focused on making an impact in her hometown.
She's the co-founder of Be Nimble Foundation. The organization focuses on creating a diverse and inclusive tech ecosystem by providing talent development and entrepreneurship support.
"We get to directly work with and talk to our people — Black and brown people, usually between the age of about 16 to 35, that are looking to do a career transition, mostly in the tech sector," Jones said.
Currently, Be Nimble is providing free training through their OnDeck Upskilling Program.
They offer eight different certifications through Microsoft and Google training programs, including product development, digital marketing and graphic design.
Training for these skills typically costs up to $10,000 each, but Bank of America is providing scholarships for 250 students.
"We live, we work, we play here, this is home. So if we can't make an investment into the places where our neighbors are, people who need help, you know, then, you know, what are we really doing here?" Andy Crask, Bank of America President, Indianapolis said.
Removing the cost barrier aligns with Bank of America's investment in advancing racial and economic opportunity.
Lawrence North graduate and mom, Kaira Graham, is taking advantage of the free training.
"I want a better life for me and my son; I want us to be financially stable," Kaira Graham said. "Getting minorities involved in tech can change a lot of our lives and change things for us, open doors for us. So it means a lot for me to get involved."
At last check, more than 90 people were already enrolled in the free training. Jones tells WRTV there is a waitlist but new a co-hort starts each month.
"We're dealing with people who have day jobs, kids, all sorts of things going on. So we don't require them to be anyplace public. Everything is 100% online, and it's self paced," Jones said.