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BUSINESS AND WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

CIC

Cyber Innovation Center

In Louisiana, companies will find a highly skilled workforce ready to meet the needs of existing and future businesses. Included in this number are more than 103,000 professionals with a background in software development or digital media. The industry also draws support from research hubs, such as the Cyber Innovation Center in Bossier City.

Louisiana’s fast-growing technology sector is yielding thousands of new software development and information technology jobs as more global players locate in the state. To ensure a sustainable supply of talent for employers, the State of Louisiana has engineered innovative partnerships joining private companies and Louisiana universities.

Technology firms participating in the partnerships — including CGI (with UL Lafayette), CSRA  (with La. Tech), GE Capital (with UNO) and IBM (with LSU) — credit the opportunity to collaborate with higher education campuses as a key reason why they chose to invest in Louisiana.

Here in northwest Louisiana, global IT leader CSRA is creating an 800-job technology center in Bossier City, where the company is developing solutions in cloud computing, cybersecurity and technology consulting. CSRA is partnering with Louisiana Tech University, Bossier Parish Community College and Northwestern State University to expand the number of graduates equipped for employment at CSRA through another 10-year, $14 million state higher education initiative. Louisiana Tech already has traction in this area; it was the first university in the country to offer a cyber engineering degree.

THRIVING ECONOMY

Bossier City has an abundantly healthy business sector. While the state unemployment rate stands at 6.6 percent, Bossier remains below the state average at 5.7 percent. The reasons for economic stability in the area are vast. The area casinos have brought thousands of direct and indirect jobs. Barksdale Air Force Base’s presence is also a major boost for our local economy with an annual economic impact of nearly $1 billion.

BOOMING INDUSTRIES
Northwest Louisiana has become widely known as “The Hollywood of the South.” Competitive tax incentives, an established infrastructure and specialized workforce have served to bolster the film industry, as well as the digital media, sound recording and live performance industries. Over 100 movie and television productions have been filmed in the Bossier-Shreveport area in the past 10 years.

The health of local business is also evident in the continued construction of new developments in the area, and projects in Bossier City have been rolling in steadily for more than two decades. Our area was naturally equipped to provide a sturdy location for Benteler Steel’s new facility. To address the company’s crucial workforce needs, the state offered the services of LED FastStart® – the No. 1 workforce program in the country. State officials partnered with the Greater Bossier Economic Development Foundation, the City of Bossier and the Bossier Parish Police Jury to facilitate the construction of a new training facility on the campus of Bossier Parish Community College to support a pipeline of talent for Benteler.

Source: louisianaeconomicdevelopment.com