The Baker-Polito Administration has announced $9.7 million in grants from the Skills Capital Grant Program to 47 educational organizations across the Commonwealth to update equipment and expand student enrollment in programs that provide career education. The awards announced Monday mark $102 million in total funding provided to high schools, colleges, and other educational organizations since the program’s inception in 2015. 

Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Labor, and Workforce Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta, and Education Secretary James Peyser visited Peabody Veterans Memorial High School to announce the awards and to tour the high school’s electrical engineering and culinary arts classrooms, which received a $175,000 award last year. 

Four Berkshire County schools are among the educational institutions that are receiving a portion of the grant money: 

Berkshire Community College, Pittsfield - $400,000, Culinary and Hospitality: The college will establish the Berkshire Culinary Institute (BCI) to support its redesigned culinary and hospitality program.  The former cafeteria will be repurposed into a modern teaching and learning space to give students experience in the culinary, hospitality, and foodservice industries. 

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Taconic High School, Pittsfield - $171,615, Information Support Services and Networking: The high school is launching a new Information Support Services and Networking Program (ISSN) to meet the local workforce demand. The new equipment will outfit two new IT computer labs that will provide a learning resource for students to become certified in COMP A++ and Cisco Networking Assistant.      

McCann Technical School, North Adams - $96,430, Metal Fabrication & Welding: Precision manufacturing in Berkshire County is a niche market focused on aerospace, defense, commercial, medical device, plastics, and mold making markets.  Critical to these industries is a workforce of well-trained welders, metal fabricators, and robotic welding technology programmers for both bridge and structural and pre-cast concrete fabrication. The high school will purchase welding and robotics equipment to support students in the metal fabrication program, as well as learners in evening adult training programs. 

Monument Mountain Regional High School, Great Barrington - $75,000, Manufacturing Innovative Pathway: Students in the manufacturing Innovation Pathway will have opportunities for hands-on instruction with several multi-material 3D printers, laser cutters, a welding simulator, and automation simulator through Project Lead the Way (PLTW) project-based learning curriculum. 

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