Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Council Awards $1.8 million to Per Scholas and UDC Partner Doran Jones
In 2011, New York State’s Governor Cuomo created 10 Regional Councils to develop long-term strategic plans for economic growth for their regions, as a key component of Governor Cuomo’s transformative approach to economic development. New York City’s Regional Economic Development Council’s (REDC) five-year strategic plan is focused on accelerating economic growth and job creation by building on the city’s many strengths, while ensuring that economically distressed communities and populations have greater opportunities to participate in the benefits of growth. Per Scholas is honored to be awarded funding for both its core IT-Ready training program and ground-breaking UDC project.
“We are very proud to receive this substantial investment from Governor Cuomo and the State of New York,” Plinio Ayala, President and CEO of Per Scholas, said in response to the award. “We applaud the Governor and the state for believing in this economic development for the city and its people. This is a job creator, one that will support high-tech growth in New York City and have a tremendous impact on this neighborhood, its residents and the city.”
“We are excited to receive this investment from the state for our expansion plans of the Urban Development Center,” said Keith Klain, CEO of Doran Jones Testing. “It’s validating our vision for the next New York tech corridor in the South Bronx.”
Per Scholas is partnering with IT consulting firm Doran Jones to bring 450 new, high-tech jobs to the heart of the South Bronx (Port Morris) through a unique and innovative partnership. The Urban Development Center (UDC) brings together Per Scholas’ expertise as an IT training provider, and Doran Jones’ expertise as a software testing center operator.
For the UDC phase 1 (currently underway), Per Scholas is training and Doran Jones will hire 150 STEP graduates. For the planned 2015 UDC phase 2 (the focus of this proposal), Per Scholas will train and Doran Jones will hire an additional 300 graduates. Training eligibility is limited to those living at or below 200% federal poverty, ensuring that these jobs will go to individuals from NYC’s most economically distressed communities. New hires will have a starting wage of $35,000 with benefits and advancement opportunities.
Through the Urban Development Center and Per Scholas’ core IT-Ready job training program, its approach ensures that the low-income New Yorkers who make up its student population are not only able to qualify for and obtain entry-level jobs in the IT industry, but that they have the training, support, and positioning to become upward mobile in their careers–an important focus of the REDC. On average, Per Scholas graduates earn a starting wage four times their average pre-training income.
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