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NYC bets on the future by reinforcing STEM focus programs

New York, like many cities large and small in this country, wants to build its own answer to Silicon Valley. Unlike many other cities, New York has really leaned into this initiative.


New York persuaded Facebook and Google to open offices in the city. It worked with local business partners to set up high-tech incubation centers to attract new tech jobs. New York also put lots of money where its mouth is by looking to create a new high-tech institution of higher learning and opening several STEM programs in the city's five boroughs.


In 2011 former mayor Michael Bloomberg, convinced that the city’s once dominant financial sector was too volatile to be a dependable economic engine for the city, pushed the city fathers to ante up free land and $100 million in taxpayer funds to a university or a group of universities willing to build a first-rate engineering or tech campus within the five boroughs. The press came to call this his "genius school" initiative. Several big name universities in the science field including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Sanford University entered into what amounted to a competition for the honor of being the "genius school". Cornell University in upstate New York won the competition.

BASE, or The Bronx Academy for Software Engineering is one of several STEM learning centers set up in public schools across the city. BASE opened in 2013 with 108 9th graders. BASE sits in the inner city but it's funding allows for high-tech instruction on up-to-date equipment designed to help these future engineers and technicians actually find jobs.


Kudos! to New York City. In spite of its reportedly tough fiscal situation, it has realized that tech jobs are the future of employment. Not only has it been generous with money in bringing more tech jobs into the city, but it has also spent a great deal of money on educating the city’s children in a manner guaranteed to fill those jobs.

  • Dec 12, 2013 10:03:19 PM
NAO for high school

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