BMCC’s Center for Continuing Education and Workforce Development just received a $50,000 scholarship grant from BNY Mellon, providing scholarships for students pursuing allied health and information technology certifications.
These certifications heighten a person’s employability in two of the country’s most lucrative and fast-growing job markets, predicted to increase at least 30% now through 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.
“I think everyone is aware that allied health and technology are rapidly expanding employment areas, despite the current economy,” said Sunil Gupta, Dean of the Center for Continuing Education and Workforce Development at BMCC.
“But a person seeking employment still needs to approach these sectors in a strategic way, in order to be successful. We sit down and talk with each training applicant, and assess his or her academic skills, work history, and goals. There are a number of career paths to choose from, within the training areas we offer, and we make sure each person has a sense of immediate as well as long-term goals.”
Allied health: A thriving field
Specialized allied health trainings at BMCC attract nurses, hospital administrators and medical professionals seeking to upgrade or broaden their skills, as well as GED recipients and high school graduates looking to enter the healthcare field.
For some, the scholarship will remove a financial barrier that has blocked their career goals--which are as varied as the training offered.
Certification training is available for those seeking work as an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) or Paramedic; a Medical Assistant Specialist; or EKG, phlebotomy or pharmacy technician. Participants also prepare for certification to work in a polysomnography lab, helping diagnose sleep disorders, or in a number of hospital settings, entering electronic medical records.
Professor Sung Gwak, a Registered Nurse—as well as certified Infusion Nurse, Critical Care Nurse and Medical/Surgical Nurse—brings over 28 years at BMCC and professional experience in emergency room and other settings to the classes.
“Right now, people have a better chance at being employed by acquiring these kinds of trainings,” she says. “The field of nursing has jobs all over the country. It’s a good choice for self-motivated individuals. Wherever you go, this profession is continually prospering.”
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics agrees, stating 10 of the country’s 20 fastest growing occupations are related to healthcare, a field projected to generate 3.2 million new jobs between 2008 and 2018, surpassing growth in every other industry.
Information technology (IT): The data looks good
BMCC’s Center for Continuing Education and Workforce Development is not only a Certified CISCO Networking Academy, students train in computer labs replicating the real-world complexity of today’s most cutting-edge IT workplace.
“Beware of antiquated labs with outdated equipment,” warns Christopher Viteritti, BMCC’s lead Cisco Certified Academy Instructor.
“At BMCC, each CISCO class has its own IDF--Intermediate Distribution Facility. There’s a data closet in each classroom, with its own pods and sets of equipment. Students work through real work scenarios--authentic switching and routing set-ups enabling them to practice the actual deployment, implementation and troubleshooting skills they’ll take right into the workplace.”
In the process, students build skills for certifications that lead to a number of IT career paths.
Some students have the ultimate goal of working as a Network Engineer, Security Specialist, Systems or Database administrator. Others use their initial A+ certification training in computer hardware repair to find employment as a Help Desk or Field Service Technician. Depending on their goals, they can continue acquiring skills toward becoming a Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA), or Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP).
Overall employment of computer network, systems, and database administrators, the DOL reports, is projected to increase an impressive 30% from 2008 to 2018--and offers a median annual wage of $66,000.
In addition to computer repair and networking skills, students can pursue Microsoft Certification at BMCC, a global standard for working in almost every office environment.
Established in 2007 from the merger of Mellon Financial Corporation and The Bank of New York Company, Inc., BNY Mellon is a leading asset management and securities services company, and strives to meet clients’ needs in a rapidly changing global marketplace. The company’s commitment to the fiscal health of communities in which they do business is evidenced by this grant, as well as other projects.