Baker Awards $11.7 Million in Skills Capital Grants to Educational Institutions

The Baker-Polito Administration last week announced $11.7 million in Skills Capital Grants awarded to 47 educational institutions across the Commonwealth to update equipment and expand student enrollment in programs that provide career education.

Twelve of the organizations are receiving a Skills Capital Grant for the first time. 

To date, the Baker-Polito Administration has awarded approximately $92 million in Skills Capital Grants to nearly 300 different programs. Through Skills Capital Grants, schools have expanded their enrollment of students learning skills in high-demand occupations, enabling more than 16,200 additional students to enroll in educational programs that are prioritized by employers across Massachusetts.

“At a critical time in our Commonwealth, these Skills Capital Grants will increase flexibility and support for schools and educational institutions to launch new programs and help more students develop important technical skills and prepare them for high-demand industries,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “As our economy moves forward, it will be crucial for young people to develop the important technical skills that local employers need to grow their businesses.”

The Skills Capital Grants are awarded by Governor Baker’s Workforce Skills Cabinet, which was created in 2015 to bring together the Secretariats of Education, Labor and Workforce Development, and Housing and Economic Development to align education, economic development and workforce policies in order to strategize around how to meet employers’ demand for skilled workers in every region of the Commonwealth.

The competitive grants are awarded to educational institutions that demonstrate partnerships with local businesses, as well as align curriculum and credentials with industry demand to maximize hiring opportunities in each region of the state. The 2018 Economic Development Bill, filed by the Governor and passed by the Legislature, established an additional $75 million in Skills Capital Grant funding.

The following local organizations received awards in this round:

•Bunker Hill Community College, Boston – $400,000 Associate of Science Degree in Registered Nursing: The grant will support a new nursing Innovation Pathway program for students from Madison Park Vocational Technical School, in partnership with the University of Massachusetts Boston. The college will also make critically needed updates to its registered nursing program’s simulation labs. BHCC will install a networked web-based video capture system in all three laboratory classrooms, allowing faculty to view and evaluate student performance.

•Everett High School, Everett – $85,000 Culinary Arts Program: The high school will open an onsite bistro to create an in-house experiential learning opportunity for students. The experience will build students’ real-world skills so they can meet the expectations of employers. 

•YMCA of Greater Boston, Boston – $217,648 Industry Certification Workforce Training: The YMCA of Greater Boston’s Training Inc. is a workforce development training program serving underemployed and unemployed adults with certificates in high-demand entry-level occupations that have a good pathway for career growth. The program collaborates with dozens of employer partners to recruit qualified candidates, and design and implement training curriculum that matches employers’ needs.

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