Brooklyn Borough President and Mayoral candidate Eric Adams celebrated the expansion of the Per Scholas technology programs with Amazon and Barclay’s reps on Thursday.
Their New York Locations include the Bronx and Brooklyn, and the team also announced an expansion to Staten Island on Oct. 21. Recently, 32 Per Scholas graduates were hired from Amazon.
Per Scholas offers completely free training for high school graduates, certification and networking to communities often excluded from tech jobs. Students at Per Scholas’ NYC campuses have access to IT training, cybersecurity classes, courses on software engineering, Amazon Web Services and more resources, in order to earn certifications that can get them jobs not only at tech companies but also businesses that need tech support.
“I remember graduating with a computer science degree, and how I was able to use that skill, not only to have a foundation to move into the middle class, but also to save lives,” Adams said.
Adams graduated with an associate degree from the New York City College of Technology before getting his bachelor’s and master’s degrees.
“So when you bring someone that is coming from Brownsville, South Bronx, South Jamaica Queens, when they come into a boardroom or part of a startup, they’re going to bring their life experiences,” Adams said.
Next year, Per Scholas will launch another Satellite campus at the Isaac Center in Manhattan. Carly Graham Garcia, head of external affairs at Amazon, explained how their partnership with Per Scholas helps New Yorkers pursue and secure entry-level jobs in cloud services.
“The fact is, this approach works. The numbers speak for themselves. Nationally, 80% Per Scholas graduates find employment within one year of graduating,” Garcia said.
In New York alone, Per Scholas graduates have been making four times more than they were making before they entered the program.
The Brooklyn Barclays campus launched five years ago. “Barclays was also instrumental in helping us build our cybersecurity training program, and has hired nearly 60 of our graduates of Per Scholas,” said Abe Mendez, managing director of Per Scholas New York.
Barclays Americas CEO Richard Haworth joined the Per Scholas team and Adams in celebrating the success of the students at the Brooklyn campus. “We’re proud that we’ve been able to bring 55 Per Scholas colleagues into Barclays since the inception of the program and we’re looking forward to doing a lot more of that,” Haworth said. The best examples of its success, he said, were the students. Adams agreed, and offered the sentiment that there aren’t enough opportunities for the abundance of skilled residents in New York.
“There is some great talent that sits on the bench right now in this city. Time for them to get in the game, Adams said.