Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno Highlights Partnerships Between Business And Higher Education During Visit to Union County Academy For Information Technology

Trenton, NJ – Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno today continued her tour of New Jersey’s Career and Technical Education schools with a visit to the Union County Academy for Information Technology, which is collaborating with Novo Nordisk and the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) to provide valuable learning opportunities for the Academy’s students.

“In recognizing National Career and Technical Education Month, we are celebrating the unique contributions that New Jersey businesses and our excellent research universities can provide for the students and staff in Career and Technical Education programs,” said Lt. Governor Guadagno. “The collaboration between Novo Nordisk and NJIT helps bridge career readiness with college readiness, giving students maximum flexibility in selecting a path after high school. The bottom line is to give our students a solid start as well as a competitive edge as they pursue their career goals.”

The Academy for Information Technology (AIT) is a small, four-year career academy that fosters critical thinking skills in its culturally diverse population. By emphasizing intellectual curiosity, hard work, ethical behavior, and technological expertise with business integration, the school community guides its students to achieve their greatest potential. Because students are admitted to the school through a competitive process, all courses are designed and taught at the honors or enriched levels and are not specifically labeled as such. Approximately 99 percent of students among the Union County Academy for Information Technology’s graduating classes have chosen to further their education beyond high school, with 97 percent attending four-year colleges and universities.Through an articulation agreement with NJIT, students who meet the conditions of the agreement and choose to attend NJIT have the opportunity to earn college credit and continue their education at NJIT after graduation. All students who are accepted to AIT through the fall of 2015 will be eligible for joint admission under this agreement.

As a business partner, Novo Nordisk provides the students with valuable learning experiences including an annual scholarship program, career day presentations, field trips to Novo Nordisk’s U.S. headquarters in Princeton, as well as on-site job shadowing and internships. Not only are the students exposed to a wide array of opportunities in the information technology field, but they are also able to use these experiences to earn industry recognized certifications in Microsoft Office Specialist, A+, Oracle Database and Java Programming.

Lt. Governor Guadagno was accompanied on her visit to Union County Vocational School’s campus by New Jersey Commissioner of Labor Harold Wirths and Marie Barry, director of the state Department of Education’s Office of Career and Technical Education. The state officials met with students, educators and representatives of the school’s partners to discuss how students are able to earn college credits toward a degree from NJIT.

Also participating in the visit were Peter Capodice, superintendent of schools; Dr. Charles Seron, interim principal for the Academy for Information Technology; “Tom” Hung Cheng Yang, computer system design instructor for the academy; and Dr. Fadi P. Deek, provost and senior vice president, NJIT and  Henry Cortina, Vice President of Information Technology, Novo Nordisk.

There are career and technical education programs offered throughout New Jersey’s 21 county vocational high schools and in more than 100 traditional high schools. More than 90,000 secondary students participate in CTE programs, with approximately 30,000 of them attending the 21 vocational schools. Approximately 70 percent of the state’s vocational-tech students attend college. Every county features partnerships with business, industry, colleges and universities.


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Governor Christie: Now, I found it interesting yesterday because, you know, I tried to be a nice guy yesterday, right? I didn’t do any yelling and screaming at the Legislature like I sometimes do. I didn’t say here are my ideas that we must do, and if we don’t do them I will veto anything else. No, I’ve been acting in the way that I’ve tried to act for all four years when dealing with the Legislature, which is to try to come up with bipartisan solutions. See, New Jerseyans are a really, really funny people. They elected now twice a conservative Republican governor and at the very same time elected a liberal Democratic legislature, because you people just like to be entertained, right? Let’s see how this works. It’s like, you know, your thirteen-year-old son with the science experiment in the basement. Let’s mix these things together and see what happens, right? So I think it’s my job as Governor to make sure that I try to make it work and not explode. So yesterday I said listen, here are the problems. They’re undeniable. I’m ready to work with you to try to come up with the solutions but we need to come up with more solutions.


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Press Contact:
Michael Drewniak
Colin Reed

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