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DeltaV launches new curriculum focused on computer operations, receives $100k grant from Future Ready Iowa

DeltaV, a Cedar Rapids-based coding and digital marketing school, has launched new curriculum and a program that features fully-paid tuition costs, thanks to a $100,000 grant from the Future Ready Iowa Employer Innovation Fund.  

The new one-week Ops 102 class, Intro to Computer Operations, kicks off in November and is offered fully online. The follow up Ops 201 class, Foundations of Computer Operations, is a four-week course that will prepare students for a career as a User Support/Help Desk Technician.

Funding from Future Ready Iowa will cover tuition for up to 10 qualifying students to take the Ops 102 and 201 courses, and additional funding for five of those students to take the additional four-week Ops 301 course covering Network and Systems Administration.

After completion of the initial five-week program, students will be ready to begin a career in IT as a Computer User Support Specialist, an in-demand position at many employers across Iowa. The full nine-week program, meanwhile, will fully prepare students to be Network and Systems Administrators.

This curriculum teaches students to support technology operations for employers by resolving issues with hardware, software, and virtual or cloud systems. Students will deploy and troubleshoot Windows and Linux operating systems in various virtual and cloud environments. Key skills such as customer service, knowledge and process documentation, performance monitoring, system process management, issue handling, recovery tools, and software application installation, maintenance, and removal will be practiced.

“People who have lost their jobs because of the pandemic are looking for new opportunities, and with the right training, there are high-demand careers currently available to them right here in Iowa,” said Aaron Horn, Chief Operating Officer for NewBoCo, in an announcement. “But if you’re unemployed, you can’t exactly spend the money to get that training. So these awards help to make it possible.”

The tuition awards are available only to people who live in Iowa, though the virtual nature of the classes means that they can be taken from anywhere in the state.

In the tech sector, Iowa is facing a workforce shortage due to the lack of available applicants with the necessary skills. In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, many Iowans are facing furloughed or eliminated job positions and uncertain career futures. Now more than ever, DeltaV is positioned to make a huge impact in our state by continuing its focus on retraining Iowans for careers in software, digital marketing, and now user support and network and systems administration. 

Classes will continue to be held virtually for the remainder of 2020. Once permitted, students will have the option to attend in person, but students that wish to finish online will be able to do so.

Those interested can view the upcoming schedule and apply at

DeltaV launches new curriculum focused on computer operations, receives $100k grant from Future Ready Iowa | Clay & Milk
A central Iowa ag-tech accelerator has secured more backers and finally has a name. The Greater Des Moines Partnership first announced the accelerator last year, naming four initial investors. On Monday, the Partnership said the program will be called the "Iowa AgriTech Accelerator" and named three new investors. The new investors include Grinnell Mutual, Kent Corp. and Sukup Manufacturing, all Iowa companies. They join investors Deere & Co., Peoples Co., Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Co. and DuPont Pioneer. Each investor has agreed to put up $100,000 for the first year of the accelerator. Startups entering the program will receive $40,000 in seed funding in exchange for 6 percent equity. Tej Dhawan, an angel investor and local startup mentor, is serving as interim director until the AgriTech Accelerator names a permanent leader. Dhawan held a similar role with the GIA before Brian Hemesath was named as managing director. As interim director, Dhawan said his main job includes hiring the accelerator's executive director, establishing a business structure and initial recruiting for the first cohort. The accelerator will place few filters, such as location and product, on the applicant pool, Dhawan said. "When you’re seeking innovation, innovation can come from every corner of the world so why restrict ourselves," he said. One area the the AgriTech Accelerator won't recruit from is biotech. For its first cohort, the AgriTech Accelerator will work out of the GIA's space in Des Moines' East Village, Dhawan said. A future, permanent home is still to be decided. The accelerator's program will host startups from mid-July through mid-October, ending with an event connected to the annual World Food Prize. The GIA, which the AgriTech Accelerator is based on, also ends with presentations at an industry event. The accelerator has also started lining up a mentor pool. The Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Pork Producers Association have agreed to provide mentors, as has Iowa State University. While the AgriTech Accelerator is loosely based off of the GIA, it will differ in its business structure, Dhawan said. The GIA runs through a for-profit model for both operations and its investment fund. The AgriTech Accelerator will have a nonprofit model for its operations and a for-profit setup for its fund. Dhawan said the nonprofit model is being used so the accelerator can better work with other nonprofit partners, such as trade associations. "These are all organizations that are nonprofits and can be amazing stakeholders without ever having to be investors in the accelerator," he said. "It becomes easier to work with trade associations in their nonprofit role when we are also a nonprofit." When it's up and running, the AgriTech Accelerator would be one of a handful of ag-focused startup development programs in Iowa. Others include the Ag Startup Engine out of Iowa State University and the Rural Ventures Alliance from Iowa MicroLoan. Matthew Patane is the managing editor and co-founder of Clay & Milk. Send him an email at
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