ST. LOUIS — Webster Groves-based marketing company Digital Strike is looking for more students to train for free as part of a major growth initiative with Google.
The program promises to provide the equivalent of a college degree in about a year's time that could lead to job opportunities that average $125,000 a year.
The classes hit on about six Google courses, including website design, website user experience, and e-commerce. The classes are designed to lift barriers for at-need students, sometimes those who may not be able to afford similar classes offered at other places.
"We're going after the students who can't pay that fee," said Digital Strike president Chris Westmeyer.
The classes often appeal to students who don't necessarily see a traditional college education in their future but still desire continued learning and opportunities.
Taji Barr, 21, graduated high school early but an accident sidelined his educational track. Last year, a friend suggested he apply for the Digital Strike course, and he's set to graduate the program in July.
"Honestly, it's opened my horizons," said Barr. "I never thought I'd be able to do this before a year ago."
Barr said he really got into data analytics in the last year and hopes he can find a career that will allow him to pursue his personal dreams. He feels confident that he has more tools to get him there.
"I'm going to get my career," said Barr. "I'm going to take off."
Barr said he didn't think he would be accepted into the program because it sounded too good to be true, but he encourages anyone who is interested to just apply.
Westmeyer said he's having a harder time filling the free course this year and still has a handful of spots left.
The deadline to apply is July 15.