Gov. Cuomo announces four job and education initiatives at JFK

Job and educational opportunities abound for Queens residents seeking to benefit from the $13 billion-redevelopment at John F. Kennedy International Airport, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday.

“As we move forward with the modernization of JFK Airport, we want to ensure that the historic transformation of the airport will also lift up the surrounding Queens communities,” Cuomo said. “These initiatives will support businesses and help the local community find new jobs, providing an additional regional economic boost as we enter the next phase of the airport redevelopment.”

The JFK Redevelopment Advisory Council will be responsible for connecting job seekers to training and prospective employment with airport employers, supporting local businesses and fostering STEM-aviation education at local schools through four new programs.

The initiatives include providing both construction and airport operations jobs to local residents, ensuring jobs for the formerly incarcerated through the Second Chance Program, reserving 50 percent of concession sites for local businesses at the new Terminal One and developing science and technology courses with a focus on aviation for students grades one to 12.

Helping to ensure these initiatives for Queens residents was U.S. Rep. Greg Meeks (D-Jamaica, Rockaway Beach), a co-chair of the advisory council.

“I am proud to announce these new initiatives, which will further ensure that contracts are going to our local businesses, that the people of Queens will find meaningful employment, and that investment is being made in our schools to prepare students for the STEM careers of tomorrow,” said Meeks. “Additionally, I welcome the Council for Airport Opportunity’s expansion to Far Rockaway, helping more people learn about these initiatives closer to home. This combined with the MWBE commitments we’ve already secured will make the JFK redevelopment not just an investment in our infrastructure, but an investment in the working families of Queens.”

Qualified Minority/Women-owned Business entrepreneurs, locals seeking jobs or contracts and those searching for training or education can go to the community outreach office located in Jamaica 144-33 Jamaica Ave.

“Recycling dollars into increasing local hiring efforts, a strong commitment to second chance employment opportunities, expanding the pipeline, supporting STEM education and a 50% NYC-based local concessions goal all speak to the hard work and liked-minds pushing our community and its people forward,” said Assemblywoman Alicia Hyndman (D-Springfield Gardens), co-chair of the council’s Education Committee. “There is more to do, and more to come, but with commitments like these at the forefront, we are building a better and inclusive Queens we can all be proud of. We are focused on a thorough and meaningful southeast Queens legacy.”

Assemblyman Clyde Vanel (D-Queens Village), president of the NY Metro Black Pilots of America, was enthusiastic about the benefits to the local community from the development.

“We are excited at the opportunity for training the local community to work and thrive in all aspects of the redevelopment, including the field of aviation,” said Vanel. “We envision more pilots, aircraft mechanics, air traffic controllers to come from this airport community.”

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