De Blasio Launches Program To Help Students Enroll In Colleges

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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says while there may be some truth in Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s rhetoric that American jobs are being outsourced, those employment opportunities could not have been kept within the United States because of the country’s historical lack of proper educational framework.

“The United States as a country has not created the framework in terms of education and training to keep those jobs here that are being outsourced, and we have to address that issue. We need to focus on that, on quality of education and training in IT and related high-tech industries,” Mayor de Blasio told new India Times in an Interview at his office in City Hall Oct. 18.

He made the comments in response to a question while talking about his administration’s plans to create awareness in the community about the benefits of college education for young immigrants.

As part of that plan his office has announced a college application week program from Oct. 17-21 during which the City’s 365 high schools will participate to learn more about the college planning and application process, and also about financial incentives for low-income families.

“These programs are really meant to create a universal college-going culture, and will provide some particular supports for families facing particular struggles. Our ‘College Access for All’ initiative stems from our belief that all New York City students can reach their full potential, regardless of the neighborhoods they live in or whether their parents went to college,” the mayor said. As part of that, he said, the administration is making the investment to get it done – from making the SAT available for free during the school day, to eliminating the CUNY application fee, to bringing a record number of schools into college application week – this year.

Asked about the potential for gainful employment once someone finishes college education, the mayor admitted that there have been some instances where even with college education people have not go the kind of jobs they deserve. Nonetheless, he reiterated the importance of college education and skills development not just for the sake of education, but also for its potential for higher earnings for young people and for creating a more stable middle class society.

Giving one example as to why college education is important, he said at in the city there are jobs for which recruitments could not be made because of lack of availability of enough number of qualified and trained personnel. “Technology sector jobs are going unfilled for lack of qualified applicants,” De Blasio said, reiterating the need for college education, training and skill development in the face of the challenges of the modern economy.

“We have to address all these issues about quality and opportunity for education. We still have too many young people who do not graduate from high school, too many young people can’t be at college because it costs too much and we have not had enough emphasis before on STEM areas in our educational system. The underlying problem relates to a number of policy decisions that we have made that were not the right ones, and we have to address those now,” the mayor said responding to a question.

“I obviously support Hillary Clinton as President because she is the kind of a leader who would do what we are just now talking about – quality education and skill development for all.”