On November 12, 2019, the New York City Department of Design and Construction (DDC) and The School Construction Authority (SCA) kicked off the first meeting of ACE Team 8; an affiliate of the ACE Mentor Program of America. ACE Team 8, led by the STEAM Initiatives team, recruited 33 students from neighborhoods all over New York City, mainly from Queens and Brooklyn. ACE Team 8 also registered 9 mentor Engineers, Architects and Construction Managers from DDC, SCA, and TC Electric.
The ACE Mentor Program of America, Inc. (ACE) stands for Architecture, Construction and Engineering. The non-profit organization helps mentor high school students and inspires them to pursue careers in design and construction. ACE not only engages sponsors and volunteer mentors to expose students to real-world opportunities, it also financially supports student's continued success through scholarships and grant opportunities.
Returning mentors Deputy Director of Public Buildings Oral Selkridge and Civil Engineer Madeline Skoblik spoke about the many valuable resources and opportunities students would get out of the program and encouraged student to stay engaged and participate in ACE for the duration of the program.
“In addition to exposure to careers in architecture and engineering, we can provide you with college recommendations that will make you stand out,” stated Mr. Selkridge.
Ms. Skoblik shared an inspirational story about herself, and added, “I wish I was involved with ACE and this mentorship program when I was your age. I’m a young engineer from Wisconsin who moved to New York City to pursue my dreams.”
The students, mentors, and staff participated in introduction session, an icebreaker, and human bingo to get to know each other better. They discussed each other’s interests and involvement in ACE. Mentors expressed the importance of adhering to the high expectations and requirements of the ACE Program and Team 8 STEAM specific policies.