High School Graduates First Class of Students Earning Diploma And College Degrees
BY: John “Hennry” Harris
In the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn, there is an innovative and unique school, Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) that has the dubious distinction of being known as President Obama‘s favorite city school.
P-TECH opened in September 2011 in a unique partnership between IBM, City University of New York – City Tech, and the New York City Department of Education that focuses on steering its students into post-secondary pathways in the area of Information Technology, giving its students an associate’s degree in computer science alongside a high school diploma and first crack at a job with the school’s corporate sponsor IBM.
“You look at the success of this model and it throws away all of your conceptions about what low-income students or students of color can achieve,” said Stanley Litow, president of IBM International Foundation. “I think this is a viable model to replace what’s happening with education across the United States.”
Six kids from P-TECH’s inaugural class have earned their high school diplomas and college degrees in technology two years ahead of schedule. These students are Cletus Andoh, Michelle Nguyen, Rahat Mahmud, Kiambu Gall and Gabriel Rosa.
Gabriel Rosa actually applied to P-TECH on a whim.
“Being able to handle a lot of work is definitely a skill I’ve gained,” Rosa said. “If I wasn’t in P-TECH, I’m not sure where I’d be.” (newyorkdailynews.com)
Amazingly, 74% of kids from the 90-student class are deemed college-ready, which equals to more than twice the city average.
Congratulations to the inaugural class at P-TECH !! They are disproving stereotypes about our inner-city students and getting an excellent opportunity to transition from high school to college and then to a career. The students are also given exceptional exposure to the work world through internships, extensive real world experience and are provided mentors by IBM and other partner organizations.
P-TECH was mentioned by President Obama on February 12, 2013 State of the Union address which was followed by a visit from the POTUS.
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