Athena Digital Leaders

A new initiative to give both students and experienced mid-career managers training and work placements in the fields of AI and Data Science

This program supports dozens of companies across industries in BC with highly skilled women and new immigrants who have machine learning, data science and managerial talent. We are placing machine learning and data science Masters and PhD students (as well as self-taught equivalents) into project and long-term roles with salaries subsidized 43% up to 18 weeks and a maximum of $17,000.

In addition, we are recruiting mid-career managers in the fields of product management, software management and project management to enrol in accelerated machine learning training courses with our academic institutions that will be offered to the successful participants under a full scholarship. Eligible courses for approved Athena Digital Leaders can be found here. These managers will be entitled to the same salary subsidies as the graduating students. If you are a student or mid-career manager looking for an exciting new career in these fields, please fill out the application form below. If you are currently looking for an internship, you may be able to apply this funding to the internship also.

If you are an employer looking for skilled managers or domain experts in machine learning and data science, apply to be a hiring partner here.

Announcing Eligibility for New Immigrants to Canada, Including Male Participants

Athena Pathways' mission is to deepen Canada’s talent pool and make it more inclusive while delivering real value in the form of trained interns, workers and executives to businesses that are seeking greater diversity in their workforce. Since launching the project for women in early 2020, we have become more aware of challenges faced by BIPOC individuals in securing high quality jobs in technology fields. This is particularly acute for newcomers to Canada who may not be familiar with many of the dynamics of our job market and typically do not have personal networks to aid them in job discovery. For instance, according to Statistics Canada, immigrants make up the majority of Masters STEM graduates in Canada, but only 39% of immigrant engineering graduates find a job requiring their degree, compared to 71% of their Canadian-born counterparts.

It is disparities like these that have led us to open up our new Athena Digital Leaders program to all new immigrants, whether female, male or gender variant. We are pleased to invite all immigrants to Canada who are now resident in British Columbia to apply to this program. The following are some of the indicators of need that our applicant review committee will be looking for in awarding scholarships and wage subsidies under this program. Athena Digital Leaders will prioritize applicants who demonstrate both a high level of skill in AI, machine learning or data science and who have faced barriers to securing positions that utilize their skills such as coming from a country or culture that: (i) traditionally produces few experts in these fields; (ii) provides less educational opportunities to people in a group they belong to (e.g. gender, religious affiliation, etc.); or (iii) suffers from war or economic hardship. Personal potential, hardships and needs of each applicant will also be considered.

The following are some composite examples of individuals who would potentially be a good fit for the Athena Digital Leaders program:

Fatima is a machine learning researcher from Afghanistan who studied computer science remotely with support from a fellowship at a leading university in the United Kingdom.
Ajani is a data engineer from Nigeria who has struggled to find work after arriving in BC during the pandemic and who has a family to support.
Fernanda is a product manager from Brazil who recently lost her job at a Canadian packaged goods supplier who downsized due to COVID. Finding a new job has been difficult due to holding primary childcare duties in her household.

Athena Digital Leaders in the Media

Application Deadline

Applications for the current round of funding closed on September 22nd, 2021. We are working on obtaining additional funding for this program. Please fill out the following to hear if we are successful in this and will be opening applications back up: https://www.athenapathways.org/take-leading-role