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Mayor R.T. Rybak visits STEP-UP interns at fast-growing Minneapolis tech company, Agosto

Press Briefing Information for Monday, June 25, 2012

Q: Why is Agosto participating in STEP-UP Achieve?
A: Agosto approached STEP-UP with the idea of providing interns a unique learning and work experience in the IT sector. By giving young people a chance to gain perspective and confidence by participating in hands-on project work, we believe that they will have a greater chance for placement and success in future employment. Helping to build a knowledgeable, confident, skilled and diverse future IT workforce can only help the IT sector as a whole, as well as the interns and Agosto.

Q: What is Agosto's particular industry perspective on the need to train a new generation of workers for the IT sector (why this is important for the future of the IT sector)?
A: There is truly not enough local talent with the skill set that Agosto needs and we want to support growing a more skilled workforce here in the Twin Cities. Breaking into the IT sector is daunting and it's difficult to get established. Also, Agosto recognizes that we live in diverse world. Our clients are in locations around the world and they are demanding a more diverse IT staff. Unfortunately, the IT sector has been dominated by a particular demographic. We're excited that not only are we are getting to train the next generation of IT workers, we are also helping to break down barriers to a future in the IT sector for a more diverse group of people.

Q: What are Agosto's hopes for the program this summer?
A: We want the interns to have a wonderful, unique experience, bringing Google Apps and an enterprise-grade platform to a handful of non-profits. By doing this, it's our hope that they recognize the larger human component of Google Apps and that IT professionals and systems can help companies improve collaboration, teamwork and communication, across the board.

Q: What is the specific work that Agosto interns will be doing?
A: Agosto interns will be involved in learning about and deploying cloud technology as they implement pro bono Google Apps installations for several not-for-profit companies, including Rebuilding Together, Cornerstone and Project Success. The students will be gaining technology experience as well as directly giving back to the community by helping these organizations. These projects will have three main aspects.

  1. Technical - setting up the Google Apps environment and getting the organization's legacy data and email moved to the cloud as well as helping to build Google Sites – websites to house data for specific projects;

  2. Project Management - managing dates and tasks as well as managing expectations, with a large consultative and client facing aspect, encouraging the organization to follow Agosto's proven processes;

  3. Change Management - help the organizations to understand what it means to be on Google Apps, how to increase efficiency and how to get the most out of their new way of collaborating and communicating. They'll act as the experts, enabling new Google Apps users to get started and do more, faster, from any internet-connected device.

Quotes from Agosto CEO, Aric Bandy - "When starting my career, I personally benefited from internship opportunities as well as being mentored by executives well established in their careers. Today, it's much more difficult for graduating students to gain the experience needed to break into the IT sector especially considering the economic and diversity barriers some of these students face. These summer internships are a great opportunity for the young people to work on enterprise IT projects while giving back to the community. I’m excited to help these students gain the experience and confidence necessary to continue their technology studies and eventually helping them launch careers in technology."

Agosto summary: Founded in 2001 in Minneapolis, Minn., and with offices in Minneapolis, MN and Toronto, Canada, Agosto ( is one of the oldest and fastest-growing Google Apps and cloud consulting firms. The company, one of the earliest Google Apps partners, has been singled-out by MSPmentor 100, a distinguished research report that identifies the world's most progressive managed service providers. The company served on Google's Customer Advisory Board in 2008 and joined its Enterprise Advisory Board in 2009—one of only eight partners to sit on the board. Agosto also was ranked in Inc. magazine's 5,000 Fastest Growing Companies in both 2009 and 2010, and was featured along with Microsoft, Oracle and Rackspace on Talkin' Cloud's 2012 Top 200 Cloud Experts. Clients include Regis Corporation, 2nd Wind Exercise, Famous Dave’s, Goodwill Easter Seals, Minnesota Wild and Jaguar Land Rover.

Media contact: Caroline Life | Agosto Inc | | 612.605.3526