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Letter: Northland and other projects will help WNY job-seekers

Northland and other projects will help WNY job-seekers

The Northland Avenue Training Center announced by Mayor Byron Brown is a welcomed addition to our region’s workforce development toolbox. As our economy becomes more robust, our workforce needs to evolve to meet the demands of new and evolving businesses. This training center, plus new certificate and degree programs like the nanotechnology program at Erie Community College and the advanced manufacturing program at SUNY Buffalo State, are prime examples how business and education work together to meet a shared goal for an employable workforce.

While these programs focus on retraining adults, the WNY STEM Hub (Science Technology Engineering Math and the Arts) and partners are diligently working to prepare our next generation workforce. With nearly 400 members, the WNY STEM Hub’s mission is to facilitate collaboration between business and education to advance science, technology, engineering and mathematics in classrooms so tomorrow’s workers are prepared and eager to pursue further STEM education and careers in these innovative and lucrative fields. We provide a range of services, including learning tours for teachers to examine best practices and model programs, and collaboration experiences that scale up STEM programs.

In addition to innovation in higher education, there is transformation happening in charter, public and private schools with STEM learning engaging students in new ways. Twenty-nine school districts have already been recognized for their beginning steps in STEM.

Our region is rife with opportunity. The Northland Avenue Training Center and the good work happening in our colleges and classrooms will help Western New York have a brighter future and sustain economic growth over time.

Michelle Kavanaugh

President, WNY STEM Hub