December 7, 2018

New Haven revs up tech training to become 'City That Codes'

Photo | Holberton School
Photo | Holberton School
District New Haven is home to the tech-focused Holberton School, welcoming its first class in January.

City officials say they will jump-start plans to rebrand New Haven as "the City That Codes" in the wake of its recognition by the National League of Cities as a leader in innovation, STEM education and entrepreneurship.

Mayor Toni Harp teamed up with the Elm City Innovation Collaborative on Friday to announce a new effort to train software engineers and tech talent with a goal of doubling the number of tech professionals educated in New Haven by 2022.

The plan arose from a National League of Cities (NLC) program that pairs the organization with 50 cities nationwide to support local entrepreneurship. New Haven was named as one of the cities to take part in the City Innovation Ecosystem Program last month. The city paired with CTNext, a subsidiary of Connecticut Innovations, to craft its bid.

New Haven's tech-training plan has three components:

  • Identifying community members with the potential to take part in tech training, and exposing them to new technologies and skills.
  • Enabling residents to achieve proficiency in software through organizations, events and university partnerships.
  • Steering residents to high-level training at universities and the new outpost of Silicon Valley's Holberton School, slated to welcome its first class of 30 students in January to its new campus at District New Haven.

"When accepting cities, we look for two things: leadership that is tenacious and willing to forge cross-sector partnerships, and commitments to action that will take full advantage of a city's unique strengths," said Scott Andes, program director for the City Innovation Ecosystem Program. "New Haven had one of our most compelling proposals, with collaboration from partners across the city, and I look forward to working with them and our NLC partners to make it a success."

"We're excited by what the National League of Cities recognition means for the growing entrepreneurial ecosystem programs in New Haven: national attention on their inclusive approach to developing software skills can bring students and foundation support from across the country," said Glendowlyn Thames, executive director of CTNext. "These Innovation Places are contributing to a paradigm shift and putting Connecticut on the map as a leader for innovation-based economic development."

Contact Liese Klein at lklein@newhavenbiz.com

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