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2013 September 16 - 12:00 am

POLITICS AND POLICY: NY Initiative Allows for 6,000 Free Associate Degrees

ALBANY (AP) — State officials say 6,000 high school students from across New York will be able to earn an associate degree at no cost under a program designed to land them jobs when they graduate.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that 16 high schools have been selected to be part of public-private partnerships designed prepare students for high-skill jobs in technology, manufacturing and health care. The students will earn both an associate degree and a high school degree under the state’s Pathways in Technology Early College High School program, or P-Tech.

“This groundbreaking program will give students across the state the opportunity to earn a college degree without taking on significant debt from student loans while also starting on a pathway to a good-paying job when they graduate,” said Cuomo. “These public-private partnerships are a model for success for our students, our employers and our regional economies.”

Under the program, private concerns like IBM partner with community colleges like SUNY Orange and a school system, like Newburgh Enlarged City School District.

In Central New York, there is a partnership in manufacturing between the Syracuse City School District, Onondaga Community College, and Manufacturers Association of Central New York.

In the Mohawk Valley, there is a partnership in manufacturing between a regional consortium of K-12 schools, Fulton-Montgomery Community College, and 16 regional companies.

In the Southern Tier, a partnership in health technology and manufacturing exists between a regional consortium of K-12 schools led by Binghamton City School District, Broome Community College, and seven regional companies including Lockheed Martin MS2 and United Health Services Hospitals, Inc.

In the Finger Lakes, a Computer Systems Technology & Computer Information Systemspartnershipexists between the Rochester City School District, Monroe Community College, and a regional consortium of businesses.

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