Frequently asked questions

Submitted by dpi-admin on Sat, 06/06/2020 - 19:52

Find answers to the top questions about TechReady Illinois and the programs offered by our academic partners. If you don't find what you're looking for, contact us with your any additional questions.

Who are these programs for?

TechReady Illinois is an effort to help unemployed as well as furloughed and underutilized Illinoisans gain valuable tech skills to bounce back from these difficult times stronger and more digitally prepared than ever. In light of COVID-19, many TechReady programs are being offered at deep discounts. Programs are offered across a wide range of experience levels, from those interested in jumpstarting a new career path to those advancing their existing tech career.

How much do the programs cost?

In response to the COVID-19 crisis, most TechReady Illinois program providers are offering their programs for free or at 50-75% discounts. Cost information for each program is provided on the Programs page.

Will TechReady Illinois lead me to a job?

While TechReady Illinois cannot guarantee you a job as a result of completing programs offered through this initiative, we will provide you with resources and career development opportunities to maximize the chance of making a successful job transition as soon as possible.

What are the TechReady career development opportunities?

Once enrolled in a program, participants can take part in career development opportunities through TechReady.

  • Study Groups - available for select programs: Please read the program details on the TechReady website to find if your program of interest includes a Study Group. Study group will be formed after the program begins, and enrolled students will be notified via email.
  • Industry Coaches - available for select programs: Each study group will be matched with a successful industry practitioner who will meet weekly via videoconference with the group to share first-hand industry experiences and provide insights.
  • Webinars and Speaker Events - TechReady will be hosting webinars and speaker events focused on career development and job readiness topics as well as industry and technology areas to help program participants build their networks and prepare for technology roles.
  • Real Projects with Real Chicago Companies - Coming Soon! This will be an opportunity for TechReady students to directly apply the skills being taught and gain valuable experience. TechReady is preparing to roll out these projects later in 2020. Once project opportunities are available, TechReady participants will be invited to participate via email.

What do I do if a program is full?

If you try to register for a program and it is full, please email us at [email protected]. We will respond to let you know of other programs that may be of interest or waitlists that may be available.

Will there be a limit to the number of people who can participate in a program?

Instructor-led programs may have a cap on participation. Self-led online programs have no enrollment limits, and you can enroll at any time.

Can I enroll in multiple programs?

Yes! TechReady does not limit the number of programs in which you can enroll.

What is the time commitment for these programs?

The time commitment varies based on the program. When you explore the programs, click the “View Description” button to see more details about the program length and time commitment per day that is recommended for timely completion of the material.

I clicked on a Coursera program and it took me to the Illinois workNet website. What do I do now?

The State of Illinois is committed to bringing forward tech-focused training programs and is collaborating with P33 and Discovery Partners Institute (DPI) to offer training opportunities to Illinois residents through the TechReady Illinois program.

The State of Illinois Workforce Portal, Illinois workNet, has also partnered with Coursera to help bring educational opportunities to displaced Illinois workers for free for a limited time. By registering with Illinois workNet, you will have access to career exploration materials, how to find training and credentials, how to prepare for a job search (including free access to, information about job openings, ways to find employment and training services in your area and layoff assistance resources (not unemployment insurance).

Displaced Illinois residents registering for Coursera programs through TechReady are invited to participate in a specific set of programs for free through the Illinois workNet portal by following these steps:

  1. Select "Access Your Free Courses" and log into or set up your Illinois workNet account.
  2. Coursera will send you an email within 2 business days. Register for free online courses by September 30, 2020.
  3. Log into Coursera and complete your courses by December 31, 2020.

Regardless of your work status, you can explore and register for any of Coursera’s courses or programs by going directly to and searching for a topic of interest. There is a fee to receive a certificate from a Coursera course when registering directly with Coursera.

What other resources are available through the State of Illinois?

The State of Illinois has an entire website full of resources and organizations ready to help unemployed and underemployed workers get training and career support. For more information go to Illinois workNet.

Can I enroll in a TechReady program while receiving unemployment benefits?

Currently, you can enroll in and take a program through TechReady Illinois and it will not affect your unemployment insurance eligibility. If enrolled, you must answer "yes" to the question "Are you attending school or training?" on the unemployment certification questionnaire. However, this may be subject to change in the future. For more information, please contact the Illinois Department of Employment Security.

Who should I talk to if I have any additional questions?

Please email [email protected] for more information about programs, to receive help in finding the right next step for you, or any additional questions you may have.

Contact us

We look forward to hearing from you.

[email protected]