Director’s Chair: May 2021

A headshot of an old white man with white hair on the sides of his head wearing glasses, a black suit jacket, and a blue and white checkered shirt on the Director's Chair announcement.

IT’S GRADUATION TIME again, and that calls for congratulations across the board. After the challenges of COVID, the 2021 school year is finally culminating in our kindergartners being promoted to first graders, our middle school students becoming high schoolers, and our high school grads moving on to opportunities in Higher Ed. I have a personal interest in these transitions because my wife and I are blessed with grandchildren who’re at exactly those pathway gates.

But professionally, too, we at ACDS spend a lot of our time thinking about education and graduation—specifically, how we can reach more and more young Arkansans with the message about the great IT career opportunities that are available to them today. Earlier this year, ACDS, in collaboration with Arkansas Times and East Initiative, published the first edition of ITARKANSAS Magazine, a publication aimed at the high school and college-age students and telling them everything they need to know about IT career opportunities in Arkansas. And just last week we reinforced that communication with a flyer to all Arkansas high school graduates, pointing them to a number of IT resources and encouraging them to consider pursuing an IT career right here at home.

We’re certainly not alone in this effort—just read this month’s Q & A to see how UA Little Rock’s Trojan Cyber Arena is working to take the tech message even to our state’s middle school students. The earlier the better, we say. And so to all graduates and future graduates, congratulations from ACDS. Have a fun and safe summer of 2021.

–Bill Yoder,

Executive Director