Naugatuck Valley Community College hosted the second Statewide Connecticut-Early College Opportunities (CT-ECO) on Friday, June 3, 2016.
“Putting the Pieces Together; Aligning K-12, College, and the Workforce,” convened four Connecticut Early College Opportunities (CT-ECO) programs from Danbury, Norwalk, New London and Windham School Districts. Industry partners, community colleges, and high school district representatives attended. The program opened with a welcome from NVCC President Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Ph.D., who thanked everyone for their participation and noted the importance of events like this. ”Conversations don’t get better for our students if we don’t have industry sitting at the table,” she said.
Industry partner, President and Founder of NewOak, James Frischling, expressed the enthusiasm of his colleagues at NewOak where a “small army” of partners share their commitment to education. Frischling noted that he is “singularly most proud of the development of new talent” as part of the public/private partnership which includes internships and opportunities.
The keynote by Norwalk Community College President David Levinson, Ph.D., reminded the attendees of the vision and commitment of the community college to early college opportunities and industry partnerships.
A panel of industry partners spoke about “Building the Pipeline” including Anders Drew, panel moderator, NewOak; Monoswita Saha, Program Manager, Corporate Citizenship & Corporate Affairs, IBM; Howard Jenkins, Human Resources Manager, Electric Boat; Yuri Yoshizawa, Managing Director, NewOak.
The final segment of the program featured students from the four CT-ECO programs moderated by Sarah Roy, director of the Danbury ECO Program. First- and second-year students from each of the CT-ECO programs answered questions about their experience in the program.
“These conversations provided a unique opportunity for the current CT-ECO program partners to come together to share insights and best practices as the CT-ECO programs continue to grow statewide. The CT-ECO initiative serves the needs of individual students while providing a robust talent pipeline for the community and its employers. We are looking forward to its continued success over the next year.” Tracy Ariel, CSCU Director of the Early College Opportunity programs.