Marcy, NY (WIBX) - A public forum at SUNYIT this morning was an effort led by Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi to prepare people living across the Mohawk Valley for an array of jobs at the future Nanotechnology Park being build on the school's campus. Officials from across the region were at hand to address an array of opportunities in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Labor fields. "It think there's a lot of money to be made, there's a lot of people to be hired. It will be our opportunity," said Shawna Papale, Senior Vice President of Economic Development and Administration with Mohawk Valley EDGE.

Papale says with a little training, many in the workforce can look to advance their careers. "But, it also can be those individuals in the high schools, in the community colleges, that can become the majority of people working in a facilities that we will see at Marcy Nanotechonology at SUNYIT."

Brindisi says the aim is to plan ahead and develop a strategy for a better educated and better trained workforce. "Over the past few months, the SUNYIT Quad-C project has made leaps and bounds, from creating a partnership with the firm nfrastructure to securing additional funding from the state through the Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council. Some companies have already made commitments to our area, and we need to continue to attract more businesses, create more jobs and grow our local economy." Brindisi goes on to say in his released statement, "...I look to the SUNYIT project as a model for how we can do more to move the Mohawk Valley forward and strengthen our community for future generations."

David R. DePiazza, self employed Certified Financial Counselor, says he attended the forum because he has an interest in the area's future. "I think back to the time when my father was young. He got a technology degree and went to work for GE, and that was a thriving time for Utica, you know, where many jobs were high tech and Utica was doing very well, and we've lost all of that now. All of those great jobs have left the area. We have an average income in this area that is very very low and that causes some real problems for people," he said. DePiazza goes on to say that unless something is done to improve STEM curriculum in schools, raise the standard, in terms of jobs and opportunities for people in the area, the population will steadily dwindle.

To learn more about future nanotechnology opportunities in the area, contact (315) 732-1055, or brindisia@assembly.state.ny.us.