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IAB Education Foundation & Its iDiverse Initiative Launch First-of-Its-Kind Entry-Level Training, Certification, and Job Placement Program

Designed to Increase Diversity in the Digital Media & Marketing Workforce


Partners with Silicon Valley-based San Mateo County Community College District, Oakland’s Patten University & Oasis Learning

PALM DESERT, CA (January 26, 2016) — The IAB Education Foundation and its iDiverse initiative announced today the launch of an entry-level training, certification, and job placement pilot program, establishing a first-of-its-kind, user-friendly path for diverse and underrepresented minority candidates to join the digital media and marketing workforce.

The program’s four-month curriculum will be created in partnership with the San Mateo County Community College District, based in Silicon Valley, and Oasis Learning, a competency-based curriculum provider and technology platform. IAB member companies will also be tapped for insight and expertise in crafting the syllabus. Students can take the course in-person in a classroom setting at San Mateo County Community College District or online through Patten University. In addition, Oasis Learning will work with the IAB Education Foundation to license the curriculum to colleges around the country.

Applicants for the program will be recruited through non-profit organizations such as The Mission Continues, Women in Technology, Marcus Graham Project, and the Association of University Centers on Disabilities. Costs for those selected to enroll will be covered by a combination of public and private donations. The first classes are expected to begin in spring of this year.

Once the training portion of the program is completed, students will be invited to take the newly created IAB Entry-Level Digital Advertising Certification Exam. Administered by Pearson VUE, the test will cover a broad range of digital advertising topics, such as:

  • An introduction to the digital advertising ecosystem, including media mathematics and compliance standards and policies
  • Gathering pre-campaign information, including forecasting inventory and aligning creative assets with a media plan
  • Executing a campaign, including creating a traffic sheet and generating tags
  • Monitoring a live campaign, including executing campaign modifications and performing billing and reconciliation activities
  • Understanding frequent troubleshooting issues, including discrepancies and fraudulent and/or malicious behavior
  • Campaign reporting and analysis, including providing benchmarks for success and generating and scheduling reports

After gaining IAB Entry-Level Digital Advertising Certification, the graduates will meet with iDiverse recruiters for one-on-one interviews to be matched with potential employers among IAB member companies with available positions in advertising operations, data analysis, sales support, and marketing. Assistance will continue through the first few months on the job, with access to educational resources that will help new hires excel in the workplace.

“Training is the first vital step in generating a more diverse workforce across the digital media and marketing arena — but we’re making sure that the iDiverse initiative goes much further,” said Michael Theodore, Senior Vice President, Learning and Development, IAB, and General Manager, IAB Education Foundation. “By bringing entry-level education together with benchmark testing and hands-on job placement, we’re expecting that this pilot program will lead to expanded efforts and a real move toward increasing racial, gender, economic, and cultural diversity in our industry’s workforce.”

“The San Mateo County Community College District is pleased to partner with the IAB Education Foundation’s iDiverse program, Oasis Learning, and representatives of IAB member companies to develop curricula and training leading to in-demand, entry-level jobs with career advancement potential in the digital advertising industry,” said San Mateo County Community College District Chancellor Ron Galatolo. “We are excited that our very own College of San Mateo and Community, Continuing and Corporate Education are helping to build an initiative designed to open the digital media and marketing talent pipeline to women, veterans, and underrepresented minorities in Silicon Valley and beyond.”

“Patten University is thrilled to partner with IAB and Oasis Learning to deliver high demand training in digital advertising to the underserved,” said Dr. Thomas Stewart, President, Patten University. “This is an opportunity to link real world skills to the people who will benefit the most, which is in alignment with Patten University’s mission to provide high quality education to adults everywhere without leaving graduates in debt.”

“The IAB Education Foundation iDiverse program curriculum will prepare students for certification and a successful career in online media,” said Kathleen Farley, CEO and Co-Founder, Oasis Learning. “We worked closely with experts in the IAB member organizations to develop rich curriculum designed to help students develop the key competencies desired by digital media and marketing employers.”

For more information about the IAB Education Foundation and iDiverse, please go to

About IAB
The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) empowers the media and marketing industries to thrive in the digital economy. It is comprised of more than 650 leading media and technology companies that are responsible for selling, delivering, and optimizing digital advertising or marketing campaigns. Together, they account for 86 percent of online advertising in the United States. Working with its member companies, the IAB develops technical standards and best practices and fields critical research on interactive advertising, while also educating brands, agencies, and the wider business community on the importance of digital marketing. The organization is committed to professional development and elevating the knowledge, skills, expertise, and diversity of the workforce across the industry. Through the work of its public policy office in Washington, D.C., the IAB advocates for its members and promotes the value of the interactive advertising industry to legislators and policymakers. Founded in 1996, the IAB is headquartered in New York City and has a West Coast office in San Francisco.

IAB Media Contact
Laura Goldberg
[email protected]