October 07, 2014

New Capital South Campus Center Opens Bringing Education and Employment Opportunities to Albany’s South End

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Center receives $250,000 in additional support from SEFCU and SUNY PI in support of its unique partnership approach among higher education, business and service provider partners, and grassroots stakeholders


Capital South Campus

Project Team

 

Albany Housing Authority

Owner & Developer

Trinity Alliance of the Capital Region

Operations Manager

OMNI Development Company, Inc.

Project Manager

Sano-Rubin Construction Services, LLC

Construction Manager

CSArch

Project Architect


ALBANY, NY… Albany Housing Authority Executive Director Steven T. Longo and Trinity Alliance of the Capital Region Executive Director Harris Oberlander joined with students attending classes at the new campus, elected officials including Congressman Paul D. Tonko, Senator Neil D. Breslin, Assemblyman John McDonald, Albany County Executive Dan McCoy, City of Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, Albany Common Council President Carolyn McLaughlin, business leaders including SEFCU President Michael Castellana and SUNY Polytechnic Institute Chief Executive Officer and Officer in Charge Dr. Alain E. Kaloyeros, higher education representatives including Robert J. Jones, University at Albany President, Jaime Ferero, Field Office Director, U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Renewal, and community members to celebrate the ribbon-cutting and grand opening of the Capital South Campus Center located at 20 Warren Street in Albany’s South End (12202).

Congressman Paul D. Tonko said, “The CSCC is an example of the kind of fresh, outside-the-box thinking for which our region is known. Providing workforce development and education to non-traditional students helps us bridge the skills gap and qualify more New Yorkers for unfilled jobs in our area. I thank Steve Longo and Harris Oberlander and their teams for their efforts to enrich our neighborhoods in the Capital Region.”

Now open, the CSCC provides secondary and post-secondary education to adult learners, career opportunities and workforce development preparation options to the South End. The CSCC is a partnership of more than a dozen local colleges, universities and other education organizations towards the goal of empowering people for a brighter future through education. This model of a fully collaborative college is one of the first ever in the United States.

The CSCC has been made possible by a $4.98 million grant from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) with additional matching funds from the Albany Housing Authority. The Center is designed to address the needs of the community, as highlighted by the findings of the American Communities Survey, a study conducted by the University at Albany, which reported that there are more than 17,000 adult learners in Albany who do not have a post-secondary education.

Holly Leicht, HUD’s Regional Administrator for New York and New Jersey said, “I am delighted to celebrate the opening of the Capital South Campus Center today, and all it represents for the residents of Albany’s South End. HIUD’s Capital Fund Education and Community Facili6ties program was designed with exactly this type of project in mind, and the Albany Housing Authority and their partners deserve our praise for turning their residents’ vision into reality.”

The CSCC, which is owned by the Albany Housing Authority and operated by Trinity Alliance of the Capital Region, is already attracting students, and is expected to be a hub of activity, hosting training, education and community functions, while incorporating child care and youth programming for the purpose of stabilizing economically disadvantaged families today, and positioning them for the employment opportunities of tomorrow.

Steve Longo said, “The Albany Housing Authority is proud to be part of this public/private partnerships that will forever alter the cycle of generational poverty by providing access to higher education and workforce training right here in the South End. Together, we didn’t just build a great Center – we are building a better future for Albany and the people who live and work in it.”

Harris Oberlander said, “We have all of the components in place for Albany's resurgence to occur, including the Land Bank, Sheridan Hollow housing, downtown renaissance, growing area employment opportunity. The Capital South Campus Center stands as an education and career preparation link to all of these for the residents of the inner city the CSCC will serve.”

This program is receiving the support of businesses and organizations which place corporate social responsibility high on their agendas. A special presentation was made by Michael J. Castellana, President and Chief Executive Officer of SEFCU and Dr. Alain E. Kaloyeros, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer and Officer in Charge of SUNY Polytechnic Institute who each gave a check to Trinity Alliance for $125,000 to support the Center’s programs. With $250,000 in hand, the two challenged other area businesses and organizations to join them in supporting the vital work being done by the Center in downtown Albany.

Michael Castellana said “The Capital South Campus Center is a shining example of what can be accomplished when business, education and government partner to answer the needs of community. The CSCC will change the lives of South End residents and improve the vitality of the entire Capital Region.”

Dr. Alain Kaloyeros, Chief Executive Officer and Officer in Charge of SUNY Polytechnic Institute, said, “The work being done by Trinity Alliance is in accordance with Governor Andrew Cuomo’s commitment to spurring local economic development opportunities through education and job training. As New York’s high tech corridor continues to expand across the state, the demand for skilled workers is greater than ever. We are thrilled to partner with Trinity on the Capital South Campus Center, which will be integral in providing residents of this community with the tools necessary to find success in New York’s new innovation economy.”

Education organizations involved in providing programs and/or services at the Center currently include (listed alphabetically) the City School District of Albany, Bryant and Stratton College, Capital District Childcare Council, Capital Region BOCES, The College of Saint Rose, the Educational Opportunity Center, Empire State College, Excelsior College, Hudson Valley Community College, Maria College, The Sage Colleges, Schenectady County Community College, Siena College, State University of New York at Albany, SUNY Polytechnic Institute College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering, and the SUNY University Center for Academic and Workforce Development. These institutions are offering, or will offer as they are phased-in, credit and non-credit courses as part of degree and certificate programs, and are encouraging students to register for downtown Albany classes. Some partners will provide tutors, mentors, and other supports and/or specialized expertise in such areas as technical assistance, research, and evaluation. Working cooperatively, they will facilitate financial aid, course credit retrieval and shared credit acceptance.

Robert J. Jones, President of the University at Albany, spoke representing the higher education organizations said, “This Center is a unique community-based portal to the region’s higher education institutions, providing economically disadvantaged families a gateway to a better future through education, training and services. It is a big idea with local to national resonance.”

The Drop-In Day Care Center operated by the Albany Community Action Program, a premiere childcare provider in the Capital Region, is open and accepting children on an as-needed basis. Coupled with the availability of Trinity’s Parent and Child Early Enrichment Program, the Center is already making a difference for families who are using it.

As the Center gears up, exciting new additions will include, but not be limited to The Advanced Technology Training and Information Networking (ATTAIN) Lab and other hands-on programs soon to be announced.

The event was highlighted by a presentation from Shatika Johnson who has found what she needs at the CSCC. She spoke from the heart about the difference the Center is making in her life, future and the well-being of her family. An Albany native, Shatika is participating in the Race to Ten Thousand program at the Center. Her goal is to pull together various college credits she has earned toward her ultimate goal of becoming a lawyer.

Shatika Johnson said, “Education, and the CSCC, is MY life jacket for success.”

Senator Neil D. Breslin said, “This unique collaboration among local businesses, higher education institutions and service providers will provide hope and opportunity to so many families in and around the Capital Region. Giving adult learners the opportunity to receive a secondary and/or post-secondary education will open up so many meaningful employment opportunities, improving the lives of so many families. I applaud all of the stakeholders who are here today who helped make this collaboration happen.”

Assembly Member Pat Fahy said, “The Capital South Campus Center will provide essential ready access to education and training opportunities for residents of Albany’s South End. Trinity Alliance of the Capital Region, UAlbany and many more partners in the Center will provide critical collaboration to help make it an economic driver for a community in need.”

Assembly Member John McDonald said, “It seemed like only yesterday when the community gathered to break ground on this magnificent and community driven effort to not only improve the lives of those in the South End but in essence to make the Capital City and the Capital Region that much stronger. Thanks to the help and assistance of many starting within the community and branching out, the Capital South Campus Center is no longer an idea or a dream but in reality a new way of life which will only bring about greater success in the community and throughout our region.”

Albany County Executive Dan McCoy said, “I wish to congratulate the community stakeholders and partners whose diligent efforts have made CSCC a reality,” said Albany County Executive Daniel P. McCoy. “This collaboration will serve as template for other communities in the country. The Capital South Campus Center will provide access to education to underserved populations in our city and with the knowledge that brighter days are ahead.”

Mayor Kathy Sheehan said, “It is universally understood that education is the pathway out of poverty. The resources that will be provided by the Capital South Campus Center are beneficial building blocks to many in our community who have not had access to a college education and will provide additional opportunities for acquiring the skills necessary to succeed in the 21st Century workplace. I applaud all of the partners who came together to make this Center a reality and look forward to seeing the achievements of the students who will fill this state of the art facility. ”

Albany Common Council President Carolyn McLaughlin said, “Today is a proud day for the City of Albany and in particular the Historic South End. The residents of this community have been the architects of the Capital South Campus Center from the concept to the design and now the grand opening. I congratulate them today. Maya Angelou stated that ‘When you know better, you do better.” The Capital South Center is designed to be a center of learning. As the students, of all ages, learn they will be equipped to do better for themselves, their families and their community. We are grateful to HUD, NYS Community and Homes Renewal, Albany Housing Authority, Trinity Alliance and all of the Educational and Community partners for making this day a reality.

Darryl C. Towns, Commissioner/CEO of NYS Homes and Community Renewal said, “The Capital South Campus Center is the kind of cutting edge, innovative community development project that Governor Andrew Cuomo has focused on to make neighborhoods stronger and futures brighter. By leveraging public and private partnerships that marry education, job training, day care, and youth programs, the Capital South Campus Center will be a catalyst for improving lives and creating opportunity in Albany’s South End.”

For further information about classes at the Center, please visit trinityalliancealbany.org/CSCC. Individuals who are interested in taking classes at the Center are encouraged to contact CSCC by phone at 518-694-4510 or email at [email protected]. Students may also contact one of the participating higher education institutions via their respective registration departments.

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Since its creation in 1948, the Albany Housing Authority (AHA) has evolved to provide leadership in meeting the needs and aspirations of its residents and their communities. More than just housing, today the Authority offers families a foundation from which to build successful lives, inspiring investment in self and community through quality rental, homeownership, employment and small business opportunities. The AHA is an able partner for those who wish to transform their future, and that of their community, into one of choice.

The mission of Trinity Alliance of the Capital Region is to provide services to the community that will support and promote healthy families, adults and children. The agency is dedicated to improving the neighborhood as a setting for family life, contributing to health and well-being and promoting education and employment as a means of self-development.

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Media Contact:

Jerry Gretzinger, Vice President of Strategic Communications and Public Relations
(518) 956-7359 | [email protected]