Forage, a job simulation platform working with more than 1.5 million college students to set up experiential learning opportunities that can transition to post-graduate employment, has named the College of Staten Island a Top 50 school for Experiential Learning.

“We’re thrilled to see high-quality experiential learning being delivered at scale at the College of Staten Island,” said Tom Brunskill, CEO at Forage. “What separates a leading education institution like CSI is that its team is deeply in touch with the needs of students. Initiatives like the CUNY 2X Tech Initiative, NYC Tech Talent Pipeline and the New York Jobs CEO Council highlight the university’s focus on setting students up for long term career success. CSI has recognized that experiential learning must be core to the student experience, closely aligned with a student’s academic experience. It’s an institution leveraging partnerships and technology to deliver experiential learning at a scale they never dreamed possible.”

In operation since 2017, this is the first year that Forage has compiled its list of top Experiential Learning institutions. Rankings are gathered by analyzing student engagement, faculty involvement, and early participation metrics at the top 800 four-year U.S. institutions that have partnered with Forage. CSI’s ranking puts them in the Top 1% of higher education institutions nationally that are helping bridge the gap between college and career, something the College is actively dedicated to doing.

“Our designation as a Top 50 school for Experiential Learning speaks to our commitment to student success post-graduation,” said Interim President Timothy G. Lynch. “More and more, we see the value of integrative work experience during undergraduate study and our mission is to further these initiatives to provide real-world experiences to our students so that they are career-ready upon graduation.”

Several CSI students have utilized Forage’s services for project-based learning with companies like JPMorgan Chase, Electronic Arts, and Lyft Mobile to name a few. This, in turn, has given students the background and tools sought after by those companies and others like them, giving them practical experience and confidence as they seek graduation and look to complete internships and join the workforce. 

According to CUNY2X Advisor at CSI Kristi Brescia, the Computer Science program is actively working with Forage in several capacities. Almost 90% of all CSI CUNY2X cohort students are directly using Forage in their training, which can begin as early as a student’s first year and can also be seen as a pipeline to internship opportunities and for satisfying two Co-curricular CLUE credits. The work with Forage is one of several avenues the College is utilizing to give students the experience they need to land gainful employment, post-graduation.

“The recognition is exciting and fantastic for our students,” said Brescia. “The Computer Science Department and the CUNY2X program have worked together to ensure that Computer Science majors have access to all opportunities that will enhance their professional development. Our partnership with Forage has provided our students with the skills and confidence they need to move from the classroom to the world of work.”

Computer Science Lecturer Tatiana Anderson is using Forage in her Intermediate Programming and Data Structures class and thinks the practical application is giving her students valuable insight into what they will be doing in real-time, post-graduation or as part of internships.

“Forage is a wonderful tool for students to be exposed to different technical and non-technical roles in the industry,” Anderson said via LinkedIn. “Students are getting a chance to set career goals early and make better academic decisions.”

All of this is making CSI graduates a big commodity in the workforce after receiving their degrees.

CSI, principally through the Computer Science Department, plans to continue to partner with Forage as one of its experiential learning tools in the future. The full list of Top Experiential Learning schools is available on Forage’s Website.