With a new CEO at the helm, here’s the next step for the digital literacy organization DC Byte Back


Before Return byte Joe paul even started his new job as CEO earlier this month, he was so excited he wrote nine pages of ideas for the digital literacy nonprofit.

“I like these challenges, I like to understand things, I like to solve problems,” Paul told Technical.ly. “I like to walk in spaces where I can add value and help evolve. This is how my brain works.

This is a recurring theme in many of Paul’s previous roles: he was the founder of Campus 2 Career Solutions, which teaches soft skills to students; COO of the social impact organization The Stafford Foundation and had a stint with human resources in the DC government. He also held a management position at Management leadership for tomorrow, which offers career coaching. Paul comes to Byte Back from the position of Executive Director of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity.

Paul, who succeeds the former executive director Elizabeth lindsey, was selected from over 200 candidates for the concert (for which, incidentally, he had to write a resume, cover letter and attend several interview sessions, just like the rest of us) . Even though he has been in his post for less than two weeks, he already has big ideas for the association. On the agenda: evolve the organization both locally and nationally, and add even more resources to help digital literacy.

“I am so excited about these lives that we are going to change,” said Paul. “We’re going to help so many people who don’t even know we exist.”

Nationally, it wants to expand Byte Back’s programming across the country – to West Virginia, Milwaukee and California, to name a few – by adding both virtual programming options. available on laptops and smartphones, as well as partnerships with local organizations. This expansion of the program is particularly significant, he said, as the country approaches 2025. This is the deadline by which the United States is expected to lose 85 million jobs due to AI and automation, creating a need for new vocational training.

“[Byte Back] is needed across the country and one of the ways we’re going to do that is to incorporate digital tools like [smartphones]Paul said. “We can actually train and reach more people if we open it that way. “

At this time, the organization isn’t sure which markets it will expand first, but Paul said it plans to decide to use data to assess where the needs are greatest.

Locally, the association will also pilot some programs. One, Paul said, will be a program meant to help first-generation students (a nod to Paul’s past) and their families at historically black colleges and universities in the area. It will mainly focus on the offer of technical training and certifications for digital professions. In addition, he would like to pursue professional development and technology career services at Byte Back, in addition to his existing offerings.

But overall, he said, as the new CEO, he plans to make sure anyone interested in a career in tech can get one.

“Ultimately, the goal is to make sure that the people who need them have the tools and resources to access this beautiful world of technology,” said Paul. “It’s amazing here and the pie is so huge that even if we stuff ourselves, there is still so much left. There is so much good to be done.



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