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Ribbon Cutting Ceremony Held for Blackstone Valley Education Hub

September, 2018
  • President Blackstone Chamber of Commerce, Jeannie Hebert, QCC President Luis Pedraja and Congressman James McGovern
    From left: President Blackstone Chamber of Commerce, Jeannie Hebert, QCC President Luis Pedraja and Congressman James McGovern
  • From left: Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja and Former State Senator Richard Moore.
    From left: Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja and Former State Senator Richard Moore.
  • Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony for the new Blackstone Valley Education Hub.
    Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony for the new Blackstone Valley Education Hub.
  • From left: Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Congressman McGovern and QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja.
    From left: Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Congressman McGovern and QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja watch students demonstrate the latest advanced manufacturing technologies.

On September 18, Quinsigamond Community College became part of Blackstone Valley history when the Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce held an official ribbon-cutting ceremony to open its new Blackstone Valley Education Hub, an advanced manufacturing training center developed for students to get hands-on training in the manufacturing and technology field. The new education hub, located in the renovated Linwood Mill in Northbridge, is part of the Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce’s nonprofit organization, the Center for Business and Enterprise. QCC, along with Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology and Worcester State University have partnered with the Chamber to help make the education hub a reality. The Blackstone Valley Education Hub houses three classrooms, a skilled learning and performance center offering state-of-the-art technology, machines, computers and a design lab that focuses on 3D design and printing. The education hub is designed to teach advanced manufacturing skills to students and adults, in an effort to fill the current gap in the manufacturing workforce, a gap that has expanded as people age out of the industry.

Attending the event was Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Congressman James McGovern, as well as a multitude of local legislators, business and civic leaders. Students from the region, including the Grafton Job Corps and Uxbridge High School demonstrated some of the technologies available at the Education Hub.

“Today manufacturing isn’t like what it was in my dad’s generation,” Congressman McGovern said.

Lt. Governor Polito, who is the Massachusetts STEM Advisory Council Co-Chair, acknowledged the amazing manufacturing advances that have been happening in the Commonwealth.

“We are the envy of a lot of other states and around the world,” she said.

President and CEO of Blackstone Chamber of Commerce, Jeannie Hebert said students will be work-ready after their training at the Education Hub.

“Our higher learning partners Quinsigamond Community College and Worcester State University are going to be teaching these kids,” she noted.

 “We have to think ahead and teach to the jobs of tomorrow, not today,” QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja added.

In addition to teaching, QCC has also provided the financial support for the equipment and furniture.

“QCC’s Foundation has financially been at the table for years and we appreciate the commitment…” Congressman McGovern said, adding, “This is the future of Blackstone.“

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