Patrick Administration Grants $27.8 million to Western MA Community Colleges
This week the Patrick Administration announced its latest round of funding for community colleges in Massachusetts, including over $25 million to campuses in the western part of the state.
The grants are part of a $2.2 billion higher education bond bill passed by the legislature in 2008. The funding announced this week brings over $21 million to Berkshire Community College in Pittsfield. Ellen Kennedy, president of the college, says the money will fund the renovation of the campus' two main classroom buildings.
"It's a very exciting change for this campus. It's the first time in forty years we would have this kind of investment in our infrastructure."
Kennedy says the renovations are still in the design phase, but says state funding will cover most of the renovation costs. Paul Reville is the state's Secretary of Education. He says investments in community colleges alleviate unemployment, and provide long-term economic growth in the state.
"There are a lot of jobs out there right now that require more than a high school degree but less than a four-year baccalaureate degree, and our community colleges are ideal training engines for these kinds of jobs."
The administration also announced $6.8 million for Springfield Technical Community College. That money will go towards renovations and repairs in the school's main classroom and student activity building.