Career Innovation Hub

Innovating Academic & Career Pathways

True innovation requires bold change and a visionary trajectory. Guttman Community College will expand its impact beyond the walls of our institutions and into the NYC community. The Career Innovation Hub will partner with community-based organizations to offer a variety of credit-bearing and non-credit opportunities to result in professional secure and successful futures for marginalized communities.

Preparing to pivot

“A unique community college in New York City that has focused on full-time, mostly traditional-age college students over its first 10 years is preparing for its next phase: Adding more workforce development that can serve older learners by offering part-time and weekend programs, as well as more credit and noncredit opportunities, including certificate programs, internships, credit for prior learning and more.”

Our Approach: Innovating Academic & Career Pathways

The Career Innovation Hub will create and implement tightly coordinated educational pathways that lead to satisfying and financially secure careers in order to support Guttman students as they navigate the complex intersection between their interests and aspirations, the labor market, and industry needs.

The purpose of the Career Innovation Hub is to launch Guttman students toward in-demand careers by offering a variety of credit-bearing and non-credit-bearing opportunities – certificate programs, courses, professional and personal skill-building, and course-based internships – aligned with and embedded into the educational pathways to undergraduate degrees, personal and professional growth, and financially and professionally secure and successful futures.

Using credit-bearing and non-credit-bearing entry points developed in partnership with industry leaders, the CIH will respond to student interests and industry needs and provide Guttman scholars educational pathways to enhanced job opportunities, higher earnings, degree completion, and promising career trajectories.

Program Overview and Partnerships

Cybersecurity Program with Henry Street Settlement

The Cybersecurity Program is CIH’s inaugural offering. The program was developed in partnership with the Henry Street Settlement, a not-for-profit social service agency in the Lower East Side neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City that provides social services, arts programs, and health care services to over 50,000 New Yorkers of all ages.

Cybersecurity Certificate Program Essential Questions 

Meet the Team

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Curtis Dann-Messier is one of New York City’s leading workforce experts. From 2012 – 2020 he worked at the CUNY Central Office as the University Director for Workforce Programs. In this role:

  • He oversaw over 1,000 paid internships for students as part of the CUNY Service Corps, Service Corps Puerto Rico, and CUNY Cultural Corps.
  • Curtis was the University’s health and human services workforce expert focused on the sub-baccalaureate level (associate degree and certificate programs).
  • He spearheaded the University’s adult learner initiative, helping to create a credit for prior learning policies and processes.
  • He developed and managed a 6-building, 120-unit housing program for formerly homeless veterans.

For the past three years, Curtis has been working in the healthcare industry. Most recently, Curtis was the Director of the NYC Health + Hospitals Peer Academy. The Peer Academy trains former patients, who have a lived experience with mental health or substance use challenges, to work as peer counselors in a large hospital system.

During the pandemic, Curtis worked for the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. He supported the City’s response to COVID-19, as well as working to advance the City’s peer & CHW workforce. He launched the NYC Justice Peer Initiative, which is creating two Medicaid-reimbursable state certifications for Justice Peers. Justice Peers use their lived experience with criminal legal system involvement to support others ensnared in the system.

Curtis has a master’s degree in Education and spent three years teaching in NYC classrooms. He started his career in the non-profit sector, running an after-school center in Providence, education programs in Central Park, and programs for homeless youth in Madison, Wisconsin. He holds a bachelor’s degree in ecology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Curtis has two wonderful if irascible, children, Frankie and Bobby. He loves playing basketball, seeing live music, and exploring the City in search of the best mapo tofu. He is very excited to start at CUNY’s Guttman Community College as Dean of Academic Innovation and Career Success.