Not wanting to date myself, but I participated in a IBM mainframe program out of high-school, that was created to bring inner-city kids into technology.  I went through the program and was able to get an entry-level job as a mainframe operator.  

Turns out I’m not dated and mainframes are still in vogue!  BMC’s 2020 Survey indicated that 67% of Fortune 100 companies still see IBM mainframe (System Z) as a key business platform.   Of course  these core applications have been in place for decades and would be very difficult to rewrite, so it’s better business to keep them on the mainframe.  .  

Good news is IBM has brought back and updated the mainframe training program to make it a paid apprenticeship.  IBM partnered with large System Z customers, and added apprenticeships  at customer accounts, as part of the program.

Generous, but not completely selfless😉  IBM is seeing a declining System Z skilled workforce pool and  increase in customer demand as customers look to move their environments into IBM’s Z Cloud, so opportunities exists for the career opportunities going forward. 

Through automation, advances and IBM’s Z Cloud, most of the mainframe “grunt” work should be eliminated, leaving valuable skillsets to acquire and utilize.   I’m not sure of the specifics of applicant approval, but only a high school diploma is required, and technology experience is not necessary.  

More information is available, and you can apply at  Let me know if you have any questions on the program or would like more information about IBM’s cloud offerings. 

Armando Arias
Li9 Technology Solutions
Armando Arias