Go to any tech conference in New York City or the monthly NY Tech Meetup and you’re sure to hear entrepreneurs desperate to find good talent. Though the city and the nation are stuck in an era of high unemployment, there’s actually NEGATIVE unemployment in the tech sector – demand is so great that developers are working multiple jobs.

At the same time, New York City’s Department of Education is working to ensure that students are prepared to face the real world, by being ready for college or careers when they graduate from high school. A proven way to help high school students prepare for their post-secondary life is by gaining meaningful work experience through internships.

I am pleased to be working with NYC’s Department of Education to help identify businesses and organizations to host summer interns who are participating in the CTE Summer Scholars program. This program recruits students from a number of New York City’s strongest Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs in IT, advertising and media. Rising seniors and juniors who have been selected through a rigorous application process are matched with host organizations based on their skills and interests and the focus and needs of the host company. The students will work on-site Mondays – Wednesdays and will attend classes and workshops on Thursdays – Fridays.

Companies can be creative in deciding on the work they give to interns – it’s a great opportunity to have extra capacity to manage projects such as social media monitoring, online research / competitive analysis of websites and apps, inventorying of IT systems and networks, web design, art & design, video editing, and multimedia library management.

In addition to getting motivated young people helping out for the summer, companies will get great exposure and goodwill in the community and with leaders in NYC government. Plus, the program is funded by a generous grant from Bank of America so the students receive a paycheck (often for the first time in their lives) without any cost to the host organization.

We are currently identifying organizations that will host students this summer. If you are interested in serving as a host organization, please contact me at rich (at) upperweststrategies.com.