NEW YORK, NEW YORK–August 14th, 2023: Schools That Can (STC), a nonprofit working to build an education to employment pathway that closes the opportunity and skills gap, announced the appointment of Migna Taveras as Executive Director of Schools That Can New York City, effective July 31st. In this role, Taveras will lead the vision and expansion of STC NYC, expanding the scope of the organization’s existing programming and partnerships with schools and industry leaders.
Taveras, an esteemed strategist, innovator, and entrepreneur with over twenty years of experience across public, private, and government sectors focused on strategic policy initiatives and program implementation, joins STC from Henry Street Settlement. While at Henry Street, she led successful efforts to prepare students for fields in healthcare and through her leadership in the Stacks+Joules program, technology and the green economy.
“I am honored to lead and broaden Schools that Can towards empowering students to see their futures, increase rates of college entrance among socioeconomically challenged students and reinforce the education to employment infrastructure by working closely with educators elbow-to-elbow in providing student centered culturally accessible material that leads to real world successes,” Taveras said
Taveras’s work has spanned healthcare, financial and legal services, workforce, and nonprofit sectors. Previously, she served as a policy advisor for the City Council Committee on General Welfare, and later worked as a policy advisor at NYCHA, raising over $35 million for safety and security initiatives. Building on her desire to impact global policy change and community health, in her role at Somos Community Care, Taveras led and trained a team of 55 community health workers–who were culturally, ethnically, and linguistically diverse community members–to implement patient-centered care coordination covering social determinants of health throughout New York. She was responsible for serving 250 primary care providers who had nearly 350,000 patients within a patient pool of 1.2 million.
An impactful leader with an eye toward educating and empowering communities, Taveras has collaborated with high-level executives and senior leadership teams as well as elected leaders. She studied political science and sociology at Barnard College, and earned a Masters’ in Management and Finance from the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. She is currently pursuing a Project Management Program at Cornell University.
“After working side by side with Migna as an advisor on socioeconomically challenged communities and budget issues, I’m delighted to support her appointment to Executive Director at Schools that Can,” said Deputy Speaker of the City Council Diana Ayala. “I know, in her, we have an experienced leader, ready to support the career-centered needs of students across the city. As we look to the Mayor’s plan to support jobs, I look forward to supporting her efforts to bridge the education to employment gap many students face.”
“Migna Taveras’ passion for education and advocacy for the underprivileged has made her an influential figure in our community,” said Christopher Marte, City Council Member of District 1. “Throughout her distinguished career, she has demonstrated exceptional leadership and dedication, tirelessly working to bridge the opportunity gap for young learners. I’ve known Migna for over 30 years and she stands as a true game-changer and the perfect visionary to lead STC into a brighter future.”
“We know Migna is a community leader who is ready to roll up her sleeves and make important connections to help people succeed. We wish her well in her new role, and trust that Migna will continue to work in dedicated service to those most vulnerable with education, training, and employment opportunities,” said David Garza President & CEO of Henry Street Settlement. He went on to say: “I am thankful for the service and passion she brought to her work here at Henry Street and wish her all the best in the future.”
“To say Migna’s appointment is a well-deserved accomplishment would be an understatement,” said Gregory J. Morris, CEO, New York City Employment & Training Coalition. “As someone whose work has spanned nearly every sector of our economy, Migna brings to Schools That Can a unique understanding of New York’s evolving labor market. We know she stands with the Coalition in our shared commitment to the impactful and sustainable intersection of workforce development and economic development, and the readiness of the next generation for personal and professional success.”
STC’s work to empower students in seeing their futures–with the support and skills to lead better lives–is personal to Taveras, whose focus on positively impacting communities is the heart and foundation of her work. As reported on by The New York Times in 1998, Taveras took on an internship opportunity at a law clinic at just fourteen-years-old as part of her high school education, after walking in the door and volunteering. Patricia Fersch, founding partner of Fersch LLC, later recounted the experience of working with then-intern Taveras in an article published by Forbes that focused on the unique power of the mentee/mentor relationship.
In Taveras’s role at STC NYC, she will focus on expanding the organization’s footprint, including STC’s network and community outreach, including the launch of a healthcare, STEM, and science career pathway program, set to pilot this academic year.
ABOUT SCHOOLS THAT CAN
Schools That Can is a nonprofit that bridges an education to employment pathway through career readiness programming that’s culturally relevant, youth-centered, and prioritizes real-world experiences and connections. STC currently provides career readiness programming in four major cities: New York, Newark, Chicago, and Pittsburgh. STC’s Career Readiness programming includes 125 hours of tested curriculum with a unique co-teaching model designed to support teachers and build the capacity of schools. Students engage with professionals in work-based learning experiences in industries including Climate Action, Cybersecurity, Design, and Robotics, skill-building opportunities including mock interviews and resume reviews, and mentorship and micro-internships. In STC’s Scholars At Work program, students have the opportunity to earn college credits and industry-recognized badges. To learn more, please visit: www.schoolsthatcan.org