NYC comptroller, CUNY pick fellows; N.Y. Fed to examine creative economy

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The City University of New York and the Office of the City Comptroller have teamed up to offer opportunities for graduates to work in city government. Twenty recent CUNY graduates have been picked to participate in a paid six-month fellowship program at various bureaus in the Comptroller’s Office.

Comptroller Scott Stringer and CUNY Chancellor Félix Matos Rodríguez said Tuesday that the program, which starts Oct. 5 and runs to April 1, 2021, is designed to give the fellows hands-on knowledge and experience in core government functions.

Amid the current economic crisis, where city unemployment stands at 16%, Stringer said he wanted to create a pathway to employment for recent graduates to immediately enter the job market, learn critical skills and build professional networks.

"Our young people are our future," says New York City Comptroller Schott Stringer.

“Our young people are our future. We always need a strong bench of driven, talented civic leaders ready to step up and shape the city of tomorrow — and it’s our responsibility to create pathways of opportunity for the next generation,” Stringer said. “I know this passionate cohort of fellows will be an invaluable asset to our city and that this program will be a steppingstone for a lifetime of civic engagement.”

The diverse group of graduates have all recently completed their studies at CUNY schools such as Brooklyn College, Baruch College, City College, Hunter College, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Lehman College or Queens College.

The program will include training and educational opportunities, such as skill-building workshops, meetings with civic leaders and content-based presentations on various aspects of city government.

These presentations will also be offered to the broader CUNY community so that students and alumni will be able to benefit from the educational components of the program.

“The City University of New York stands ready to help chart a course for a brighter and more inclusive future for all New Yorkers, regardless of income or ZIP code, and fulfill its role as an integral institution at the service of the state and city we proudly call home,” said Chancellor Matos Rodríguez.

New York City is one of the largest issuers of municipal debt in the United States. As of the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2020, the city had about $38 billion of general obligation debt outstanding. That's not counting the various city authorities, such as the Transitional Finance Authority, which has $39 billion of debt and the Municipal Water Finance Authority, which has $31 billion outstanding.

Moody’s Investors Service rates the city's GOs Aa2 and S&P Global Ratings and Fitch Ratings rate it AA.

CUNY is the nation’s largest urban public university, founded in 1847 and now has seven community colleges, 11 senior colleges and seven graduate or professional institutions serving 500,000 students and awarding 55,000 degrees each year.

The fellows will work in a variety of bureaus including the Office of the General Counsel, Contract Administration, Audit, Engineering, Accountancy, Asset Management, Diversity, Policy, Law and Adjustment, and Communications.

Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation.

Separately, on Oct. 16 the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and Upstart Co-Lab will co-host an event highlighting New York City’s creative economy and the role cultural and financial institutions can play in the city’s recovery after COVID-19.

“Culture and Communities: A Conversation about the Creative Sector, Community Development and Impact Investing,” will bring together local experts, foundation leaders and other peer investors to highlight the importance of the city’s creative economy; the connection between culture and community well-being, and present investment opportunities with a focus on supporting communities.

The event will feature panel discussions on the local creative economy, the state of the cultural sector and investing in New York City.

It will also feature conversations with leaders from the financial sector focused on impact investing in New York. John Williams, president of the New York Fed, will participate in a discussion with Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation.

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City of New York, NY Public finance Scott Stringer Federal Reserve Bank of New York
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