Our region's largest
economic opportunity

When CEOs of the Capital Region’s largest employers started Greater Washington Partnership, they all acknowledged that digital technology was remaking industries, the economy, and how people work. They also believed that to keep pace with technological change, meet the demand for digital skillsets, and ensure that more people who lived here could thrive here, employers needed to collaborate rather than compete to shape the region’s workforce and tech ecosystem.

In 2018 the Partnership launched the Collaborative of Leaders in Academia and Business—Capital CoLAB (CoLAB)–to drive solutions that prepared more learners for in-demand, digital tech roles in the region. CoLAB’s vision is to make the Capital Region the most diverse digital tech workforce in the country, which we do by partnering with employers and educators to build digital tech pathways that prioritize equitable access to industry-aligned skills.

CoLAB has grown to encompass a network of 18 employers, 26 higher education institutions, and five K-12 systems moving in tandem to expand the pipeline of learners interested in and proficient in STEM (particularly Black, Latinx, and women learners); align the skills and experience that employers need with what our educational institutions and workforce training systems provide, and improve the retention of our graduates and existing employees.

The Capital Region is one of the nation’s leading tech employment hubs. Employers across all industries—from government and healthcare to the arts and energy—hire workers from an array of educational backgrounds to succeed in today’s increasingly digital economy.

However, regional employers risk 60,000 digital tech jobs going unfilled annually through 2025 unless they expand how they source talent. To keep pace with the region’s demand for digital skillsets and do so in a way that enables inclusive economic growth, employers must clearly signal their talent needs and proactively invest in their workforce pipeline.

CoLAB partners are helping to solve this problem at scale, working across the region to ensure many more students are engaged in CoLAB programs and that we intentionally engage and leverage diverse ideas and programs to build the most diverse digital tech workforce in the country.

Capital CoLAB


Collaborative of Leaders in Academia and Business (CoLAB) is an action-oriented partnership of business and academic institutions that develops the talent needed for the jobs of today and tomorrow.

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Latest Work

Learn about the Capital Region’s digital tech ecosystem and how CoLAB is supporting it.

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Join CoLAB’s online community to access skills and talent resources and network with CoLAB’s employer, educator, and learner network from Baltimore to Richmond.

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  1. Learners of all backgrounds have access to the education needed to work in an increasingly digital world
  2. Educators have access to employer insights and resources 
  3. Employers in the Capital Region can find the talent locally needed to compete globally 
  4. The Capital Region is the destination for the nation’s best and most diverse tech talent

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