Council will fund full-time staff position at hackNY to link NYC tech sector with area colleges

New York, NY – City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn and hackNY have officially announced the hiring of Peter Bell, an experienced educator and technology sector expert, as a full-time hackNY staff member tasked with connecting college students and graduates to available career opportunities at New York City’s tech startups. hackNY is a New York City based tech nonprofit organization that aims to build a community of talented student technologists and enthusiasts. This initiative was first announced in Speaker Quinn’s October 2011 speech to the Association for a Better New York.

Many college students have a difficult time connecting to available positions at technology startups because these job postings do not typically flow through traditional channels like on-campus recruiting and campus job fairs. Equally so, many New York City based tech companies are actively hiring but finding it difficult to connect with qualified prospective employees. Speaker Quinn and the City Council have focused efforts on helping local startup tech firms gain access to the best talent the city has to offer while ensuring that the best and brightest students get jobs at these firms. With this initiative, Peter Bell will be charged with fostering cooperation and mutual support among disparate groups in the New York tech community as a means of fostering student education and job creation. By working directly with local universities, students, startups, and investors, Peter will help to provide the missing link between students, opportunities, and institutions that will help technologists get jobs and lead to the creation of new businesses.

This new initiative will complement Speaker Quinn and the City Council’s ongoing efforts to foster the city’s technology industry including its investment in job fairs and tech education programs.

“As New York City strives to become the tech capital of the world, we must also work to attract and retain the best and brightest,” said Speaker Quinn. “Sending a proven tech innovator like Peter Bell into our local colleges and universities to connect these students with our city’s growing tech companies will ensure that our investment will pay off tenfold, helping both college students find good paying jobs and fostering this growing sector.”

“One of the main limits to the growth of our local technology sector is a lack of access to great developers,” said Peter Bell of hackNY. “I’m excited about this chance to connect startups that wouldn’t otherwise have access to local colleges to students that might not otherwise know how to find a great job with a local startup. It’s also a chance to educate startups on how to best integrate new students into their workforce and to introduce students to the real world skills they will need to add value immediately in a fast paced startup environment.”

“As a professor at NYU and a board member of New York Tech Meetup, I’ve had the unique opportunity to see both sides of the issue at hand in New York City: qualified students need help identifying the best jobs and tech companies are struggling to find high quality talent,” said hackNY co-founder Evan Korth. “Now, with the hiring of Peter Bell, we will be able to better make the necessary connections and help both aspiring programmers and entrepreneurs as well as help the tech sector continue to grow.”