October 30, 2020
Interview Published by AWS Public Sector Blogs

Building Tech Skills and Jobs in America’s Rural Communities: Possible Dream?

How educators, public officials, and employers can solve the rural urban opportunity gap and support positive change for rural communities

AWS Partner AmazonAccording to the McKinsey Global Institute, by 2030 most of the United States’ economic and employment growth will be generated by 30 percent of the population, living and working in 25 mega regions. However, in the high-growth tech sector, employers cannot find enough urban employees to fill available jobs. The solution – find tech talent in rural communities.

Rural communities are changing the game for the next workforce of the future. No longer do you need to look in big cities to find top tech talent – you can find talent in rural locations, next to a wide range of colleges and universities, and from both traditional IT tracks like Electrical Engineering and Computer Information Systems, and non-traditional candidates from all walks of life, who are willing to be trained and certified.

In this Q&A, Brendan Walsh, SVP of Partner Relations at 1901 Group talks to the AWS Institute about opportunities to build cloud technology skills and employment in rural communities in the United States. Brendan dispels some of the myths about barriers to rural skill building. He also identifies two key changes that are necessary for rural workers to effectively join the tech labor force: reliable rural internet connectivity and employer willingness to embrace remote work opportunities.

Read the featured blog here.

For more on the topic, learn more here.


“Skills development is not a time-limited, one-time-only transfer of knowledge. Today, technology is changing so fast that everyone must be learning on an ongoing basis. Whether you are entering the job market, or you are changing career paths after 20 years, no one is too far behind to catch up.”

“This new normal is a dramatic shift away from the past where we learned in school buildings, worked in offices, and socialized in person—all of which encouraged concentration in urban locations. Now with global connectedness from IoT and remote capabilities from the cloud, there is less pressure to be in urban locations. In fact, in response to the pandemic, many organizations are considering rural expansion to reduce risks associated with crowded cities.”

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