|Matthew Watson designs cell-phone applications.|
Hochschild is a sociology professor at the University of California at Berkeley. She writes of success stories: Matthew Watson, 33, of Hueysville, Ky., signed up for the company's 24-week course and eight-week apprenticeship after hearing a radio ad. He had two associate's degrees at the time, but said the best job he could find was selling cigarettes for $10 an hour in Hazard, 45 minutes away from home. Within a year of starting Interapt's course, he landed a work-at-home job as a software engineer for a Florida-based company for more than $50,000 a year.
Interapt is the brainchild of Owensboro, Ky., native Ankur Gopal, and got off the ground after he and U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers of Kentucky's Fifth District persuaded the Appalachian Regional Commission to provide $2.7 million in funding. "With millions of U.S. tech jobs out there, we could help transform Eastern Kentucky," Gopal told Hochschild.
|Izaak Pratts of Interapt works with students in Glasgow, Ky.|
(New York Times photos by Mike Bellune)
Rogers, a Republican, found an ally in Rep. Ro Khanna, the California Democrat whose district includes Apple, Intel, LinkedIn and Yahoo. He asks, “Why outsource coding jobs to Bangalore when we can insource jobs to Eastern Kentucky, poor in jobs but rich in work ethic, and every one I.T. job brings four or five other jobs with it?”