DraftKings’ Tech for Heroes initiative which provides veterans and military spouses with free, comprehensive, high-tech job skills training, has been moved to an online format in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The company said it will be initially providing two online training sessions in web development, this week. As an extension of the program it will introduce a new partnership with American Corporate Partners (ACP) to offer mentorship opportunities by connecting veterans across the country to DraftKings employees.
“At DraftKings, we meet challenges with opportunity,” said Paul Liberman, Co-Founder and President, Global Technology and Product. “The current situation is affecting everyone, including veterans, but our commitment to veterans and their families remains as strong as ever.
“We knew that our Tech for Heroes program had to adapt and meet veterans where they were. By taking the training online, and by introducing a new mentoring program, we are now able to connect with more veterans across the country and expand the impact of our Tech for Heroes program, something I am very proud to do.”
Typically held in person and serving veterans from specific geographic regions, the new online training format will allow for veterans nationwide to participate and gain tangible skills that can help them break into the tech industry, or upskill in their current role.
Working in partnership with the national nonprofit VetsinTech, the four-week training will be taught by a certified instructor and students will receive a credential in proficiency upon completion.
“VetsinTech is honored to have the support of DraftKings which has allowed us to step up and offer even more superior training to our veterans and military spouses across the country,” said Katherine Webster, founder of VetsInTech. “Through this new format, they are able to take advantage of this “at home time” which will help them land great jobs or learn new skills as we face this national crisis together and come back stronger than ever.”
Additionally, through the new partnership with ACP, the Tech for Heroes mentoring program will help veterans throughout the country transition to the private sector through one-on-one relationships with DraftKings employees. The year-long program is designed to assist veterans in their long-term career development through mentorship, networking, and career guidance.
“All of us at ACP are delighted that DraftKings has joined our team of companies supporting our transitioning veterans as they begin meaningful careers in the private sector,” said Colleen Deere, Executive Director of American Corporate Partners. “We look forward to introducing DraftKings mentors to our veterans as we all, together, help them achieve their professional goals.”
Since launching the “Tech for Heroes” program in the summer of 2018, DraftKings has invested over $1m in providing free training to more than 200 veterans through classes hosted in six cities across the country. Throughout the year, the firm also holds charity fantasy sports contests with all proceeds going to support veterans and the Tech for Heroes program.
In 2019, the DraftKings player community raised an additional $100,000 through four charity contests, which helped to expand the reach of the program to train additional veterans.