In its latest effort to advance racial equity in Minneapolis, Target has teamed up with Summit Academy OIC to establish a new information technology (IT) learning and training center in North Minneapolis.
Target announced the North Star Innovation Center (NSIC) Monday, saying it will be a training center specifically for careers in IT and new technologies set to open for February 2021 enrollment. Minneapolis-based Target said it is supporting Summit Academy with space at the Regional Acceleration Center (RAC) at Penn and Plymouth in North Minneapolis.
“We’ve invested in North Minneapolis to support a strong quality of life for families in the neighborhood, and the Regional Acceleration Center is an important part of that investment,” Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO of Target, said in a statement.
“With its expertise in helping Black families and other residents overcome social and racial inequities, Summit Academy is an excellent community resource. We’re proud to welcome them to the RAC and to work together to advance racial equity in our hometown.”
Summit Academy trains about 1,000 adults annually in skills related to healthcare, construction trades and IT along with a 10-week GED program. Its students don't pay any out of pocket tuition.
"The North Star Innovation Center will be an inspiring and transformative place where Black men and women will build new opportunities for themselves and their families," Summit Academy OIC's President and CEO Louis King said in a statement.
"Alongside Target and the Northside community, we're taking action against racial inequity. Thousands will have their lives changed at the North Star Innovation Center, as it's a tangible, real, concrete way for us to create a better future, where people of all races can do something to help themselves and to help others. This space will be a place where people demonstrate that the best social service program is a job."
The NSIC is the latest effort from Target to address systemic issues, which it announced in the wake of George Floyd's May 25 death in Minneapolis.
Since the civil unrest in the Twin Cities, Target has pledged $10 million for social justice organizations, including "new partners" in the Twin Cities, as well as 10,000 hours of pro-bono consulting services for BIPOC-owned small businesses in the Twin Cities. It has also declared Juneteenth a company holiday.
Over the last decade, Target has invested more than $11 million in North Minneapolis, working with partners to create opportunities for the community and increase its economic vitality.