“We want to be the next Silicon Valley.”
That was the message from Bronx Borough President Rubén Diaz Jr. at his first-ever “Bronx Tech Summit,” which was held at Hostos Community College on June 11.
Framed around two panel discussions, the well-attended event drew experts from several large technology companies, including Google and Verizon, as well community leaders and residents, who learned about the state of tech boom in the Borough and how it can be expanded. 
Varun Sehgal, Chief Information Officer and Assistant Vice President of Information Technology at Hostos, spoke about the College's commitment to working with industry partners and adjusting course offerings to align with their needs. This approach, he said, will build an ecosystem in the Bronx for educators, technology training centers, employers and tech startup incubators and fuel the creation of a technology talent pipeline. Sehgal added Hostos has already submitted an application for a New York State Apprenticeship Grant that would help Hostos launch the state’s first certified apprenticeship program focused on IT skills and on-the-job training partnerships.

Talking about expanding the Borough’s growing tech market, the Borough President also spoke about how his administration is focusing on attracting other technology giants, like Google. He added he would like to see every home have a computer, not just a tablet device, to allow people to become more computer literate and effective in the workplace.
A panel discussion on “technology infrastructure” was moderated by Javier Saade, an Associate Administrator for the U.S. Small Business Administration, and included Michael Olsen (Cablevision), Leecia Eve (Verizon), Marlin Jenkins (Neture) and Steve Amarante (Sky Packets). Majora Carter, MCG Consulting LLC, moderated a second discussion on creating a “talent pipeline” with William Floyd (Google), Keith Klain (Doran Jones), Alex Abelin (LiquidTalent), Angie Kamath (Per Scholas), James Chase (Start Up Box) and Sehgal.
Minerva Tantoco as the City's first Chief Technology Officer, we are moving one
The event was also attended by Minerva Tantoco, New York City's first Chief Technology Officer, who is also a proud Bronx High School of Science alumna.
“When I think about New York, I think about creativity and innovation and the great minds that are here …  The people who are here in this room right now, are the future of technology in the Bronx,” Tantoco said.
The Bronx Borough Summit was hosted by the Bronx Borough President’s Office and sponsored by Hostos, Google, StartUp Box, Verizon, JPMorgan Chase & Co., and Optimum.
Watch the June 11 Bronx Tech Summit

About Hostos Community College
Eugenio María de Hostos Community College is an educational agent for change that has been transforming and improving the quality of life in the South Bronx and neighboring communities since 1968. It serves as a gateway to intellectual growth and socioeconomic mobility, as well as a point of departure for lifelong learning, success in professional careers, and transfer to advanced higher education programs. The College’s unique "Student Success Coaching Unit" provides students with individualized guidance and exemplifies its emphasis on student support services. 
Recently named one of the top 10 finalists for the 2015 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, Hostos offers 27 associate degree programs and two certificate programs that facilitate easy transfer to The City University of New York’s (CUNY) four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions. The College has an award-winning Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development that offers professional development courses and certificate-bearing workforce training programs. Hostos is part of CUNY, the nation’s leading urban public university, which serves more than 500,000 students at 24 colleges.