Aquent Launches MOOC Program to Transform Training for Creative Professionals
— New Six-Part Coding Course Addresses Market Demand For Designers with Technical Skills
BOSTON, July 8, 2013 – Aquent, the leading global staffing organization dedicated to marketing, creative, and digital professionals, and its new division Vitamin T, today launched Aquent Gymnasium, a revolutionary MOOC (massive open online course) program aimed at closing the skills gaps faced by creative organizations worldwide. Aquent created this program in the belief that companies in the private sector are better situated than traditional institutions of higher learning to leverage MOOC technology for professional development. Aquent, with over 25 years in market and thousands of clients, is ideally positioned to understand what creative and digital professionals need to know today, and is nimble enough to deliver practical courses to meet these needs.
As organizations look to stay current with the ever-changing technology in the marketing, creative and digital space, Aquent Gymnasium’s suite of free online courses will provide them with access to next-generation capabilities. Aquent conducts ongoing research — via focus groups, surveys, and interviews — to continually identify real-world skills gaps and develop its curriculum to address them. Aquent Gymnasium courses are taught by experienced and practicing design professionals who are passionate about sharing their knowledge and empowering others to harness new technology in realizing their creative vision. The highly practical emphasis of the course offerings means that top performing students can put their knowledge to use immediately.
“There are empty seats at companies around the world and talented people who could fill these seats, if they only had the right skills,” said Alison Farmer, vice president of learning and development for Aquent. “Aquent Gymnasium aims to close this skills gap quickly and efficiently, and put top talent to work today.”
Beginning on July 8, Aquent Gymnasium’s first MOOC, “Coding for Designers (Turn Your Comps Into Code: Be the Designer That Developers Love to Work With),” will teach experienced designers how to apply visual design tools and concepts to web and mobile projects. Developed in response to needs expressed by clients, the course will address how designers can use HTML and CSS to create working Web pages from their design comps as well as how to use these techniques to build prototypes for different devices. Furthermore, the course will highlight ways to troubleshoot layout and coding problems. Once concluded, participants with high exam scores will be considered for job placement within Aquent’s network of marquee clients.
“Learning code is critical to a career in digital design,” said Jim Webb, who conducted the focus group and will serve as instructor for this course. “In ‘Coding for Designers’ we offer real-world, hands-on challenges that design professionals face every day. And, what’s better, we’ll give them the knowledge they will need to meet these challenges. “
As a leading talent organization, Aquent places thousands of candidates each year and has a vested interest in staying up to date on the key skills companies need. Proof of Aquent’s MOOC success is evidenced by the Company’s pilot program, Summer of Learning, which was launched in 2012. Over 10,000 professionals participated in the pilot and more than 200 students were placed in jobs as a result; 15 percent of whom were new to Aquent’s talent community.
At its core, Aquent is about helping companies adapt to change, find new ways to work, and stay competitive. Aquent offers a broad range of services, including contract and contract-to-hire staffing to help global companies add technical expertise to their marketing and creative departments, increase the bandwidth of their in-house teams, and more. With a notable client list, generous benefits and training opportunities, Aquent attracts and places thousands of in-demand talent on assignment worldwide. To learn more about Aquent’s full range of services, please visit: http://aquent.com/.