On July 18, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn visited Tipping Point Workspace to join with CUNY, Tipping Point Partners and the Coalition for Queens in announcing the launch of the Advanced Software Development Program. The partnership will offer advanced software development program for CUNY computer science majors, and high-level programming courses to all New Yorkers at CUNY and beyond. The goal is to expand access to tech education, giving more New Yorkers the proficiency necessary to succeed in the second largest and fastest growing technology center in the country.
According to recent data, there are 1,700 digital firms in the city, 932 of which are currently hiring. These well-paying jobs are hard to fill because people lack the necessary skills and training to gain entry to the sector. With unemployment in the city at 9.6%, New Yorkers need help obtaining the skills to compete.
Targeted to computer science undergraduate and graduate students, the Advanced Software Development Program beginning at CUNY this fall and its curriculum were developed in close partnership with CUNY, Tipping Point Partners and other local tech firms. Participating students will receive online, classroom and lab instruction and adjunct lectures by industry professionals. Notably, students will spend a significant amount of time on “pair programming,” a common technique in which programmers work in duos to solve complex programming problems. The course of study is designed to improve students’ technical abilities, refine their communication skills and build business acumen to better address real-world business and product needs. Companies have identified these skills as critical to workplace success, but not enough recent college graduates possess them. The screening process has begun, and just under 100 eager CUNY students have applied to participate in the Advanced Software Development Program. The diverse backgrounds of applicants confirms the demand for job-focused education that opens the door for the next wave of software developers.
The second partnership involves the Coalition for Queens, CUNY, Skillshare and other leaders in the tech field. This partnership will provide high-quality tech education in areas such as computer programming, digital marketing and entrepreneurship on CUNY campuses in Queens. Instructors will include pioneering leaders and professionals from firms such as Ogilvy & Mather, Covington & Burling, OKFocus and Barrel NY. Expanding access to these courses will allow both the public-at-large and CUNY students to gain the skills needed to pursue careers in the tech sector, and the program will be open to all New Yorkers.
“As we strive to create more jobs throughout the city, it’s important to first do all we can to help New Yorkers prepare for current job openings in our burgeoning technology sector,” said Speaker Quinn. “I’m proud to partner with CUNY, Tipping Point Partners, Coalition for Queens, Skillshare and other tech industry leaders to ensure that New Yorkers are armed with the qualifications they need to access good-paying jobs in the tech industry. We consistently hear from tech companies that jobs are hard to fill because employers aren’t seeing enough qualified candidates. With the launch of these initiatives, I am confident that we’ll be hearing this complaint less often.”
“This is what good government should do: transform problems into opportunities to help industry and people alike,” said Tipping Point Partners CEO Art Chang. “In my 15 years in the New York technology sector, the demand for qualified developers has far exceeded the supply, constraining growth. The solution lies in the thousands of New Yorkers who graduate each year with potentially valuable computer science degrees, but who need a practical stepping stone to success in rapidly evolving technologies. We applaud City Council Speaker Quinn and CUNY for implementing the Advanced Software Development Program.”
Read the full press release here: http://council.nyc.gov/html/releases/071812tech.shtml
And check out the shoutout in BetaBeat here: http://betabeat.com/2012/07/christine-quinn-cuny-education-new-york-queens/