Two students working in a computer lab

Expanding tech-talent pathways in Central Virginia

VCU Engineering’s Tech-Talent Pathways Project works to increase prosperity by addressing Central Virginia’s ‘tech-education deserts’

VCU Engineering is expanding access to careers in the region's rapidly growing technology sector.

Joining forces with business leaders and community organizations, VCU Engineering is mapping Central Virginia’s existing technology education opportunities, including all K-12 and higher-education programs, tech-industry certifications and ad-hoc opportunities to upskill the workforce for the digital economy.

Through the new Tech-Talent Pathways Project, these leaders are also pinpointing gaps where resources don’t exist — or access to them is hindered by barriers. They aim to revitalize these “tech-education deserts” by creating stronger links across the tech-education community.

Growth and Opportunity for Virginia (GO Virginia), a bipartisan, business-led economic development initiative, has awarded $100,000 toward this initiative.

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  • A highly skilled workforce for Central Virginia
  • Greater access to good jobs in Virginia’s digital economy
  • Robust tech-education pathways, without gaps
  • More tech-education opportunities for underserved communities
  • Business and educator links that nurture innovation at all levels


John D. Leonard II, Ph.D.
Executive Dean and Professor

Paul F. Rocheleau
Executive Director of Strategic Development

Jenilee Stanley-Shanks
Director of Government and Community Outreach

Anita Hazel Taylor, P.H.R.
Director of VCU Engineering Career Services

Gregory E. Triplett, Ph.D.
Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

Todd Waldo
Founder and CEO of Hugh Helen LLC

Touri Goode
Project Coordinator and Researcher