Video Clips

See what business owners are saying about Ticket into Tech!

Video Clips

See what students are saying about Ticket into Tech!

Michael Specchierla, Executive Director of SLO Partners ( says:

Last year’s cohort was made up of students with a variety of non-technical backgrounds. We had a security guard, a retail customer service representative, a credit union teller, a package hauler and an Anthropology graduate. All of them had skills that were valuable to the technology sector and we hope to see a similar mix of applicants for this year’s class.  

18 local companies have embraced Apprenticeship as a way to hire diverse and skilled local talent that can keep pace with the rapid changes in technology. The SLO community understands the power of learn by doing through apprenticeship. We want to expand apprenticeship in SLO to create future careers locally grown.

Amy Kardel, Co-Founder of Clever Ducks ( and board chair of CompTIA says:

“In our experience at Clever Ducks, starting four interns at once was the same amount of administrative effort as starting one. Our journeymen taught them as a class, not individually. That efficient start also had another benefit, the apprentices formed a cohort and supported each other on journey, “

Jason Rangel, Service Delivery Manager (

“The SLO Partners Ticket into Tech program has been such a wonderful experience for Digital West. As an employer, it has been amazing to interview and work with a group of people that are so excited to get into the tech industry. Finding the right fit with our culture is an important aspect of our hiring process. With the Ticket into Tech program, we were able to meet the group, interview individuals, and hire apprentices at a discounted rate for two months. If the fit is not right, we had the option to talk with other apprentices about coming onboard. The apprentices are provided an excellent foundation of knowledge to begin their careers in technology. So far, the program has worked out extremely well. Thank you SLO partners for investing in the future of these bright apprentices, and for exposing local businesses to such a great program.  We look forward to participating again!”

Brian Weiss, CEO of ITECH Solutions (

“The Ticket into Techis a great way to find local talent for ITECH Solutions. The course material is spot on with the skills we are looking for and helps ensure candidates are trained for aptitude and screened for attitude! The subsidized pay creates a low risk opportunity to help grow our staff and lower costs during the initial months of training with our new recruits. There is also a return policy should the candidate not work out. I would recommend Ticket into Tech as a source of recruitment for any companies that are in the tech field or who have the need for internal technical staff.”

Jonathan Speaker, Principal, COO at StreamGuys,Inc (

“Having recently moved to the area to start up an expansion office for our small technology company, I was delighted to find the tech apprenticeship program. The program made finding qualified applicants seamless, timely and without the typical hiring pains. SLO Partners has been a great find, and the recent hires have been well received and are fitting in nicely into StreamGuys.”

Luke Wallace, CEO of SMS Masterminds (

“The SLO Partners apprenticeship program was an invaluable tool for SMS Masterminds to grow our technical team. The apprentice we received was not only technically proficient, but also incredibly personable, collaborative, and a strong team player. When I learned that the labor cost would be substantially subsidized for the first two months of our apprentice’s tenure, it seemed like a no-brainer. I was able to put our candidate through her paces and ensure that she would add value to our organization, before incurring any meaningful expense. I would strongly recommend any organization that has struggled to bring on talented technical employees who can hit the ground running, give the SLO Partners Apprenticeship program a shot. I’m certain you won’t regret it!”

Dan Radunz, Chief Technology Officer at IQMS (

“At IQMS we have really enjoyed having the apprentices as part of our development team.  With the training they had prior to joining they were able to add value right away and required less training and mentoring from our existing teams.  The candidates are excellent and really have a very positive and get it done attitude which I’m sure was attributable to the great screening and training process that is part of the program.  We definitely look forward to further working with you on future candidates to help fill future positions we are planning as well.”

Kirby Fell,  Chief Technology Officer at Orcutt Union School District (

“Participation in the Ticket into Tech program has been a positive experience for the Orcutt School District and we are extremely satisfied with our apprentice.  The program seeks out individuals with a positive attitude and provides the training and support to ensure their success. Each apprentice is given the opportunity to acquire multiple technology certifications prior to their assignment with a business partner. This provides reassurance that the individual will have the skills necessary to hit the ground running.  The apprenticeship program also lowers the risk of bringing on a new employee by providing a return policy, in the event the assignment is not a good fit for the business partner.”

“Ticket into Tech taught me skills that have proven to be invaluable in the apprenticeship position they placed me in. The learning has continued each day of my on the job training, and I feel confident that I am now on the right path toward achieving personal success in a career that I truly enjoy. I couldn’t ask for a more fulfilling and rewarding workplace experience.”


“My Time in IT has shown me how a passion really can become a career. I am currently very much enjoying working in an environment of like-minded people tackling different problems every day. I’m excited to progress into the Cyber Security field and see how deep this rabbit hole really goes.”


“I was stuck in one dead end, minimum wage job after another for years, with little to no room for advancement. I often dreaded waking up on workdays, and looked forward only to the weekends. After Ticket into Tech I have a job I thoroughly enjoy, and work that I find meaningful and intellectually engaging. More than this, I feel as if I have so many potential opportunities in the future. Doors I could have never imagined, are now open to me. Additionally, I feel more confident in my own abilities, and more prepared to take on new challenges and upcoming opportunities.”


“Ticket into Tech taught me skills that have proven to be invaluable in the apprenticeship position they placed me in. The learning has continued each day of my on the job training, and I feel confident that I am now on the right path toward achieving personal success in a career that I truly enjoy. I couldn’t ask for a more fulfilling and rewarding workplace experience.”


“I feel very successful right now” is a sentence a year ago I never thought I would be saying to myself, and yet here I was saying it as I was on my way to another exciting day at work just this morning. June 9th last year I was given an article in a newspaper that simply stated there would be an apprenticeship program for technology that could possibly end with a job in the IT field and to apply online, Little did I know that exact moment that I decided to apply would forever change my life and jump start me into the career path I had always yearned for. The apprenticeship program gave me my life back, which some may think would sound strange coming from someone only 22 years old at the time, however I truly felt like a worthless disappointment and that I had no future until it came a long. It gave me a reason to get up every morning and to be excited, not only now that I am in the apprenticeship portion and I have an amazing job, but even during the classes. Every day was something brand new and exciting. There was never a dull moment or a time when I felt like I did not belong or it was a waste of my time. I also gained more than a jump start into my career bath, I gained life-long connections and even life-long best friends. Friends that get me through even the worst days when they randomly seem to pop up. My life has done a complete 180 and I owe it all to Ticket-Into-Tech, and if I was asked to do it all again, I would not hesitate to say yes. The tech apprenticeship was a life saver and I’m enjoying every moment of being involved in it. Each day I am reminded on why I love technology. Everything is different and yet the same, you walk into situations thinking you know exactly how to fix an issue or how “something” works and you walk out having solved the issue completely different than you had thought or that the “something” worked completely different providing you with even more hands on experience than any book or google search can teach you. Ticket-Into-Tech gave me the book smarts, but the apprenticeship program is giving me the street smarts, which I am finding everyday to be extremely valuable.”


“The Ticket-Into-Tech program is a great opportunity that has added to my existing tech knowledge and helped me to start working in the field I enjoy, in an amazing city. The staff, teachers, students, and employers are all there to help you along the way and provided us with a great experience that I would recommend to anyone interested in a tech related field.”