The Director’s Chair: Vol. 1, No. 6

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.

SUMMER 2019 IS COMING to a close, and it’s back to school for many Arkansans. For ACDS, this summer has been active and eventful, including the launch of what we refer to internally as ACDS “Stage Two.” If you’ve heard our pitch, it stresses the short-run impact of registered apprenticeships, the most efficient, most cost effective way to equip available potential talent with employer-directed skills and gainful employment.

On August 7, ACDS co-sponsored an Apprenticeship Accelerator Workshop at UA Little Rock Jack Stephens Center, an event attended by more than 50 interested parties, and the feedback was very positive. On September 4, ACDS will co-sponsor—with the Northwest Arkansas Council—a similar workshop to be held in NWA. We plan to have a major focus in NWA with IT apprenticeships.

We’re also working with Higher Education and are co-sponsoring, with the Arkansas STEM Coalition, a series of three workshops focused on collaborating and sharing curriculum for Data Science. The first workshop is scheduled for September 19. The plan is to have the second one in November and the third in February. We’ve also visited with folks in Northeast Arkansas to explore the demand for an apprenticeship program specific to them.

This month we also kicked off a series of purposeful networking events called “Tech After Five,” a program that’s been very successful in a number of states, mostly in the Southeast. ACDS will host the events on the second Thursday of every month, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. Each event will have a corporate sponsor that will attend the event. Watch our newsletter for more info on upcoming Tech After Five meet-ups.

Speaking of our newsletter, this month we’re debuting a new guest feature called “MY Data Science.” The idea is to showcase the wide range of fascinating ways that individuals and companies create value with their particular take on the data sciences. If you have a great tech story, let us hear from you.

— Bill Yoder,

Executive Director

Arkansas Center for Data Sciences