Connect, Educate and Promote
In yesterday's New York Times,this article talked about how Stamford has one of the highest levels of collegiate education in the nation at 44%. Stamford is also mentioned in the following where the author state's that "metropolitan Stamford draws highly educated workers from white-collar professions in New York like finance." CT rocks in finance and especially lower Fairfield County, that is our bread and butter.
But how do we shift the county from just a one trick pony to being much more multi faceted?
Here are a couple of ideas:
1. Cooperate across town/city lines -- Here's a quick comparison of my experiences: I'm looking to put together a hackathon and I called several schools in Fairfield as well as New Haven county. In Fairfield county, the universities that I spoke with wanted exclusivity. If their students were to be involved or the event was on their campus, then they did not want to share. In New Haven county, the institutions took the opposite approach, in fact they suggested other people to work with at other schools.If we are to succeed in developing local talent rather than having to recruit it in we need to get places working together. My suggestion here is that the Stamford Innovation Center and other neutral locations be leveraged as much as possible .
2. The return of apprenticeships -- Right now future developers are limited to learning things on their own. If we are to grow a new generation of developers here, an early foundation in how things work from a development perspective will put them at such a huge competitive advantage as they get older. Much in the same way that apprentices have been used in the past to develop hands on experience, we need to create a way to leverage the current talent in the area to help pay it forward.
3. Transparency-- Having lived in this area for several decades, we have a tendency like most places, to not want to discuss the failings or missteps but we have to look at the history of what has been done warts and all. But the most useful information that we can perhaps learn is how others have failed or succeeded. this becomes really true when events are looked at to see the long term impact and benefit, such as Startup Weekend Stamford. I'd really like to see the results and hear some more details of the event a few months out to see how the startups there have done.
4. Aggregate the communities we have -- We seem to have lots of great meetups in the area but we need single event to get some commingling together.
Let's do this