Finding Solutions to the Problem of Youth Employment

Chancellor Carmen Farina meets with students from the Academy for Software Engineering at the CTE Summer Scholars final presentations on August 21, 2015  - Click here to view the full coverage by NY1.


Generously funded by Bank of America, CTE Summer Scholars is a seven-week program that 100 students in IT and Media with meaningful internships, combined with two days of summer school a week to help students avoid summer learning loss. For the classroom component, teachers from six schools worked with Dayna Laur – a nationally-recognized expert on project-based learning and author of Authentic Learning Experiences – to explore the question: “How Can We Increase Youth Employment in New York City? (A Youth Perspective).”

Students conducted research that allowed them to combine their own experience as high school interns with data on problems for how to provide New York City's high school students with much needed employment opportunities. Volunteers from the Project Management Institute’s New York chapter helped small groups of students develop a project plan, and distinguished industry professionals served as project mentors, providing a real world context for students to explore questions such as:

  • How can CTE students make their internships more meaningful?
  • What city policies can be changed to better support youth employment?
  • The “experience paradox”: How can students get experience, when companies require experience before hiring?
  • What does the proposed minimum wage increase mean for youth and business?

Teachers and students also made use of Tuva – – an online learning platform that teaches data literacy.

The project culminated in a “Youth Think Tank,” hosted by Bank of America and attended by NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña, Jeff Barker – NY President of Bank of America, and David Fischer – Executive Director of the Center for Youth Employment (Mayor’s Fund).

Participating schools and project mentors included: