on Education 



A Proposal for 
Fair and Equitable Distribution 
of State 
Education Aid

When School 
Expenses Rise, 
by Allen Larson




CONNECT:  Part 1

Community College Collaborations in Public Higher Education.  Testimony presented to the Joint Ways and Means Committee on Economic and  Workforce Development.  Summarized by Dr. Kathleen Schatzberg, President, Cape Cod Community College, February 23, 2004.

CONNECT Part 1     CONNECT Part 2 


        Thank you for the opportunity to speak on the happy partnership of higher education with Economic/Workforce Development.  Although we have heard from Economic Development and Workforce Development as two separate administration departments here today, I use the term as one entity because they are so intrinsically linked and interconnected in the context of higher education, particularly community colleges.  Specifically, I would like to describe for you CONNECT, a collaborative of our public higher education institutions in southeastern Massachusetts: Bristol, Massasoit, and Cape Cod Community Colleges; the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth; and Bridgewater State College. 

          Collectively we are one of the largest employers in southeastern Massachusetts.  Together we span two of the Regional Competitiveness Councils, both of whom identified in their reports (delivered last December) the centrality of higher education as a crucial fulcrum for workforce/economic development – a useful metaphor, that –

          Together, we are working to enhance and expand what we have always done, namely:

  • providing educational opportunities to area residents, businesses, and employers;
  • thereby driving economic/workforce development toward
  •  higher-wage jobs;

  •  greater economic security for families;

  •  higher tax revenues for the Commonwealth;

  •  increased jobs creation and business growth; and

  •  reduced state costs in such area as social services and criminal justice.

          Let me describe a specific example that involves several of the CONNECT institutions – an initiative to develop certificates and degrees for jobs in the emerging clean energy technologies.  We will create the “career ladders” to train the workforce needed to drive the growth of these businesses.  Specifically,

  • Our area technical high schools will train and re-train plumbers, electricians, and building trades workers for solar panel installation; fuel cell installation and maintenance; "green" building construction and/or renovation; and other green trades.
  • Cape Cod Community College will train technicians to work in areas ranging from solar to wind to hydrogen technologies to other ways of harnessing “clean energy.”
  • U-Mass/Dartmouth and Massachusetts Maritime will train engineers.
  • U-Mass/Dartmouth and private-sector institutions such as those in Woods Hole as well as state and federal agencies will provide for research and development and technology transfer.

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