CUNY 2X Tech is a $20M initiative to double by 2022 the number of CUNY students graduating annually with a tech-related bachelor’s degree prepared to launch careers in the NYC tech ecosystem. Designed in partnership with academic and industry leaders this five-year initiative includes investments in instruction, advising, and internships across a total of six CUNY senior colleges.
Since 2014, the NYC Tech Talent Pipeline (TTP) – the City’s Tech Industry Partnership – has been working hand in hand with college campuses and companies to prepare and connect CUNY students for jobs in the city’s tech ecosystem. Through these programs, industry partners identified several gaps that make CUNY students less competitive for tech jobs than their peers from other institutions. They include: 1) a lack of ability to apply foundational tech concepts and unfamiliarity with emerging technologies, 2) a lack of understanding of the careers, companies, and entry-points into the NYC tech ecosystem, and 3) less internship, project, or related tech professional experiences than students in comparable programs. In June 2017, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a goal of doubling the number of tech bachelor’s awarded by 2022 as a critical part of his broader plan to create 100,000 jobs. Shortly thereafter, the Department of Small Business Services announced the launch of CUNY 2x Tech – an initiative developed in conjunction with Presidents and Provosts of leading public and private colleges to respond to the Mayor’s call to action, address these employability gaps, and improve student graduation and job outcomes.
CUNY 2x Tech’s approach to doubling the number of tech bachelors awarded and increasing students’ ability to secure and succeed in tech jobs is focused on building the capacity of Computer Science Departments . It is not expected that campuses will double overall enrollment, but rather work together with the City and industry partners to decrease time to graduation and increase alignment of education with the preparation needed to succeed in today and tomorrow’s tech jobs. Specific objectives include:
1) Updated Instruction: Increase departmental capacity to get students through the CS bachelor’s degree program, by removing course bottlenecks. Recruit and equip tech professionals to serve as industry adjuncts, delivering up-to-date content on in-demand emerging technology and their applications in the real world.
2) Tech-Specific Advising: Ensure students have insight into the tech ecosystem, potential careers, hiring cycles, and which courses, co-curricular activities, projects, and work experiences they should take pursue – and at what time - in order to successfully pursue specific careers following graduation by providing tech-specific advising. Establish mechanism for colleges to gain insight into the preparedness of students for post-graduate careers and where students are encountering obstacles to advancement to graduation and jobs.
3) On-the-Job Experience: Ensure students have the skills, exposure, and preparation needed to secure and succeed in tech internships at companies that have capacity to convert internships into full time offers. Build capacity for departments to maintain a constant feedback loop with industry in order to understand how interns from the college meet employers’ evolving needs and to make appropriate changes to courses and co-curricular services as a result.
CUNY 2x Tech provides over $2 million to the campus for the following critical investments and additional administrative support for Computer Science Departments :
1) Updated Instruction:
- Two lines for full-time faculty with industry experience, at least one of which is a Lecturer
- Support for Tech-in-Residence Corps Members (industry adjuncts) to teach for-credit electives on in-demand technologies, and resources for existing faculty to serve as mentors
2) Tech-Specific Advising
- One full-time dedicated tech academic advisor to serve a cohort of 150 CS majors, providing insight into the tech ecosystem and which available courses, co-curricular activities, and experiences align with student career interests following graduation.
3) On-the-Job Experience:
- Support for the implementation of TTP’s Residency or Co-Op program which provides subsidized internships, improved preparation, and establishes a model for industry-departmental feedback loops.
• Double the number of computer science majors graduating with a bachelor’s degree by 2022
• Increase the percentage of computer science graduates who are employed in tech jobs at market rate salaries at the time of and following graduation
• Decrease time to graduation as students are able to more easily access courses needed to advance
• Increase the percentage of computer science majors who participate in paid tech internships
• Expand Department capacity today and into the future to engage industry to evolve degree programs, prepare students for internship and full-time jobs in the NYC tech ecosystem, and monitor outcomes after graduationepare students for internship and full-time jobs in the NYC tech ecosystem, and monitor outcomes after graduation
Tech Talent Pipeline (TTP) Residency is a semester-long program designed to provide on-the-job experience to competitive undergraduates, connect local employers to local talent, and deliver industry feedback to inform curricular content throughout New York City schools.
TTP Residency connects qualified computer science majors with NYC businesses and serves to further align college-level curricula with employer needs. Students enroll in TTP Residency during their junior year where they participate in a pre-internship training that provides web development and soft-skill curricula. Upon completion of the training, participants begin a paid internship at leading NYC businesses in web, mobile developer or software engineering roles and connection to job opportunities post-graduation.