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The Calgary tech company disrupting education

Written by: Richelle Matthews, COO
April 17, 2020

Traditional education models are being upended. The process of going to school for two to four years leaves students under a mountain of debt and lacking some of the most relevant skills necessary for the job market. It’s not working for employers or students. In the tech space, the movement towards “performance over pedigree” is widely accepted. Even Amazon and Microsoft don’t require post-secondary education. That’s why at Global Talent Accelerator, we test skills first; review credentials later.

This week, I talked to visionary CEO Vince O’Gorman about his company VOG App Developers and what they are doing to help talent fit the market needs with curated educational programs.

VOG provides local businesses with custom software applications. Since starting his business in 2012, Vince has been fostering learning and innovation among his teams. In Calgary he found a strong market of junior talent with a distinct shortage of senior and intermediate talent.

What differentiates junior from intermediate is a lot of on-the-job experience. Seeing a gap in the market for training programs, Vince has decided to launch a program called LaunchPad-that moves junior talent to the intermediate level in only 16 weeks.

Applicants must already have a foundation and experience in web development or mobile development. LaunchPad, is filled with applied learning in iOS, Android, Web Development and Backend Development. Mobile developers are among the top ten most in-demand and the demand is expected to grow by 30% in the next five years (US Bureau of Labor and Statistics).

It starts with one to two classes per day ranging between 30–45 minutes each and the rest of the day is spent working on sample projects. The projects have purposely manufactured bugs inside the system and teach the foundations of how you identify, find and fix any bug. Since app development is always changing so will the program by preparing students to become self-learners and become adaptable.

While the LaunchPad was planned to be delivered in person, VOG is making arrangements for online delivery if social distancing continues into Fall 2020.

Enrolment for the LaunchPad goes live on May 1, 2020 and the program will start in September 2020. The cost of $8500; not a lot considering the difference in salary between a junior and intermediate developer is between $20-$40K in the Calgary market.

We recommend LaunchPad, for anyone looking to advance their career and score a higher paying job. VOG will be offering some full scholarships for students that will be working with VOG upon completion. VOG is also committed to diversity and has nearly 50% female representation at the company. As a commitment to diversity VOG will be offering scholarships to underrepresented groups. For more information or to enrol

Written by: Tiona Corcoran, VP International Recruitment and Immigration at Global Talent Accelerator