NYC leads in technical education: P-Tech exported to Chicago & more

Maria Teresa Cometto —  August 16, 2013 — Leave a comment

Great news: NYC Department of Education plans to expand its early college and career technical education high school program with three new schools next year. “The schools, modeled after Brooklyn’s highly touted Pathways in Technology Early College High School, or P-Tech, will work in partnership with a City University of New York institution and a company”, explains the WSJ today. “Though P-Tech has yet to have a graduating class, school districts nationwide are already replicating the concept. Similar schools have been opened in Chicago, and several are planned throughout upstate New York. In the city, two other schools will open next month: Health, Education, and Research Occupations High School in the Bronx, which is a partner with Montefiore Medical Center, and Energy Tech High School in Queens, in partnership with National Grid and Con Edison. Next year, three more will join the ranks—two in Manhattan and one in Queens—working with Microsoft, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, SAP and the American Association of Advertising Agencies”.  “There are nine specific entry level jobs P-Tech students will be qualified for, including positions in technology support and software development, said Stanley Litow, IBM Vice President of Corporate Citizenship and Corporate Affairs”.
IBM is the corporate sponsor of P-Tech, as we explained in the chapter about Brooklyn, “The Do-It-Yourself Revolution“, in our book “Tech and the City“: <<In the fall of 2011 another experiment in the field of education and cooperation between the public and private sectors began in Crown Heights, not far from CUSP. It is also an attempt to address the demand for talented technical people from New York startups. Called Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P- TECH), it is a kind of super-high-school that lasts for six years instead of the traditional four and grants a double diploma: the regular high school diploma and an associate degree in computer science. P-TECH is a public school run by the city of New York, City University of New York (CUNY), and IBM, which came up with the idea and donated $500,000 in software and computers while making its technical experts available as mentors to the over 100 students. The last two years are the most intense as they include company internships and professional training. Those who get their degrees after six years have a good chance at finding jobs at IBM or another company, or they can use the extra two years for college credits. This program is the first of its kind in the U.S. and IBM would like to export it to other cities, particularly in areas where unemployment is really high, such as Crown Heights itself. Initial results have been promising, with 100 students enrolled, most of them from the less well-off families in the area.>>

Maria Teresa Cometto

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