The Highland Street Foundation's 11th annual Free Fun…
Highland Street Foundation offers Free Fun Fridays at Massachusetts Cultural Venues This Summer
The Highland Street Foundation‘s 11th annual Free Fun Fridays program this summer offers visitors no-cost admission to many of the most treasured cultural venues in Massachusetts. The program runs from June 28 to August 30, 2019. Created in 2009, Free Fun Fridays is designed to increase access and enrichment opportunities for children and families throughout Massachusetts during the summer months. Every Friday, from the end of June through the end of August, multiple sites are open for free. The program offers a great way for visitors and residents alike to appreciate all that Massachusetts has to offer in the summer. The program attracted 153,000 visitors in 2018 and has welcomed a total of 1.3 million people since 2009, according to Highland Street Foundation. June 28 • Lyric Stage Company of Boston, Boston • Cape Ann Museum, Gloucester • Clark Art Institute, Williamstown • MIT Museum, Cambridge • Nichols House Museum, Boston • Norman Rockwell Museum, Stockbridge • Plimoth Plantation, Plymouth • The Mount: Edith Wharton’s Home, Lenox • Wenham Museum, Wenham • Worcester Art Museum, Worcester July 5 • Cape Cod Maritime Museum, Hyannis • Amelia Park Children’s Museum, Westfield • Falmouth Museums on the Green, Falmouth • Pilgrim Hall Museum, Plymouth • Children’s Museum, Easton • Edward Gorey House, Yarmouth Port • Jacob’s Pillow, Becket • Museum of Printing, Haverhill • The Old Manse, Trustees, Concord • The Telephone Museum, Waltham July 12 • Museum of Fine Arts, Boston • The Hall at Patriot Place, Foxborough • Children’s Museum of Greater Fall River, Fall River • Gloucester Stage Company, Gloucester • New England Quilt Museum, Lowell • Smith College of Art, Northampton • Springfield Museums, Springfield • Charles River Watershed Association, Weston • Chesterwood, Stockbridge • Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, Great Barrington July 19 • Boston Children’s Museum, Boston • Arnold Arboretum, Boston • Battleship Cove, Fall River • Cape Cod Children’s Museum, Mashpee • Peabody Essex Museum, Salem • Sandwich Glass Museum, Sandwich • Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, Amherst • New England Historical Genealogical Society, Boston • Nantucket Maria Mitchell Association, Nantucket • Spellman Museum of Stamps & Postal History, Weston July 26 • Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston • Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the U.S. Senate, Boston • Cape Cod Museum of Art, Dennis • Commonwealth Museum, Boston • Larz Anderson Auto Museum, Brookline • The Gardens at Elm Bank, Wellesley • Ventfort Hall Mansion & Gilded Age Museum, Lenox • Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, Boston • Fitchburg Art Museum, Fitchburg • Historic Deerfield, Deerfield August 2 • Franklin Park Zoo, Boston • Old State House, Boston • Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood, Lenox • Chatham Shark Center, Chatham • Children’s Museum of Holyoke, Holyoke • Concord Museum, Concord • International Volleyball Hall of Fame, Holyoke • Lynn Museum, Lynn • Museum of Russian Icons, Clinton • Naumkeag, The Trustees, Stockbridge August 9 • Boston Harbor Islands National and State Park, Boston • Davis Museum at Wellesley College, Wellesley • Gore Place, Waltham • Hancock Shaker Village, Pittsfield • JFK Hyannis Museum, Hyannis • New Bedford Whaling Museum, New Bedford • Old Colony History Museum, Taunton • Worcester Historical Museum, Worcester • Museum of the National Center of Afro-American Artists, Boston • The Greenway Carousel, Boston August 16 • John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston • USS Constitution Museum, Boston • Berkshire Theatre Group, Stockbridge • Cahoon Museum of American Art, Cotuit • Discovery Museums, Acton • Fuller Craft Museum, Brockton • Harvard Museums of Science & Culture, Cambridge • Provincetown Art Association and Museum, Provincetown • Paragon Carousel, Hull • Fruitlands Museum, The Trustees, Harvard August 23 • Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston • Berkshire Museum, Pittsfield • Boston Athenaeum, Boston • Buttonwood Park Zoo, New Bedford • Emily Dickenson Museum, Amherst • The Mary Baker Eddy Library & Mapparium, Boston • Fort Devens Museum, Devens • Freedom Trail Foundation, Boston • Heritage Museums & Gardens, Sandwich • Museum of African American History, Boston and Nantucket August 30 • Old Sturbridge Village, Sturbridge • EcoTarium, Worcester • Capron Park Zoo, Attleboro • MASS MoCA, North Adams • Mass Audubon’s Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary, Topsfield • Cape Cod Museum of Natural History, Brewster • Museum of the First Corps of Cadets, Boston • Hull Lifesaving Museum, Hull • Osterville Historical Museum, Osterville For information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Baker-Polito Administration Launches Economic Development Planning Council
Today, Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito swore in members of the Economic Development Planning Council, which will provide input on and oversight of an economic development plan that will be presented to Governor Baker by the end of the year. Lt. Governor Karyn Polito and Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy will serve as co-chairs of the council. The new council brings a diversity of experience and perspective, including representation from every region of the Commonwealth. The council includes appointees of the House, Senate, relevant Executive Secretariats, and municipal leaders, along with small business owners and entrepreneurs, leaders from key business sectors and higher education. Governor Baker said, “Our administration values the unique insight the members of the Economic Development Planning Council will bring under Lt. Governor Polito and Secretary Kennealy’s leadership to continue propelling Massachusetts’ economy forward. We remain committed to empowering local communities with the tools and funding needed to succeed and I look forward to reviewing the Council’s recommendations.” Lieutenant Governor Polito, co-chair of the Economic Development Planning Council said, “I am honored to co-chair this essential process, and work with the exceptional and talented individuals appointed to the Council. With Council members hailing from the Berkshires to the Cape, representing industries ranging from healthcare to financial services to manufacturing, from entrepreneurial ventures to large established companies, the composition of this Council will ensure Massachusetts benefits from a diversity of perspectives.” Housing and Economic Development Secretary Kennealy, co-chair of the Economic Development Planning Council, said, “We are proud of the unprecedented strength of the Commonwealth’s economy, and are committed to ensuring all residents can share in continued economic growth. This Council will embark on a robust planning process, engaging stakeholders across the state for valuable input on ways we enhance our partnership with local communities, educational institutions and training organizations, and businesses. I look forward to collaborating with stakeholders across the state, and am pleased to co-chair this council with Lt. Governor Polito.” The council and process are guided by Section 16G of Chapter 6A of the Massachusetts General Laws, which requires a new economic development plan formulated and signed by the governor within the first year of a new administration. Under the leadership of Lt. Governor Polito and Secretary Kennealy, the council will embark on regional engagement sessions across the state to obtain public input in the development of a new economic development plan, which the council will approve and present to Governor Baker to guide economic policy over the next four years. Additional details on the regional engagement sessions, including session registration, are available online. At the onset of the Baker-Polito Administration’s first term in 2015, a similar process resulted in the plan entitled “Opportunities For All.” This plan formed the basis for the Administration’s economic development policy and led to the filing of economic development legislation in 2016 and 2018. Together with the Legislature, the resulting bills signed by Governor Baker collectively authorized more than $2 billion toward growing the economy and promoting regional equity within Massachusetts. The Administration’s economic development programs include the MassWorks Infrastructure Program to fund public infrastructure projects the drive job and housing growth, the Site Readiness and Brownfields programs, to enable communities to leverage underutilized sites and prepare them to be shovel-ready for development, the Collaborative Workspace program to empower local entrepreneurship and innovation and the Massachusetts Manufacturing Innovation Initiative (M2I2) to support cutting-edge research and development. The 2018 legislation authorized funding for the first ever standalone Dredging Program for our coastal communities, which supplements extensive funding for the Seaport Economic Council, which the Administration reconstituted in 2015. Since 2015, the Administration has invested $1.5 billion in grants in over 300 communities, spurring the addition of thousands of jobs and housing across the Commonwealth. Economic Development Planning Council Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Council Co-chair Secretary Mike Kennealy, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development, Council Co-chair Secretary Rosalin Acosta, Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development Pat Begrowicz, Owner and President, Onyx Specialty Papers Stephen Boyd, CEO, Boyd Technologies Cheri Butts, Associate Director, R&D, Biogen David Crouch, Founder and Owner, Ten24 Carlos DaCunha, Senior VP & Chief Lending Officer, St. Anne’s Credit Union Mayor Kim Driscoll, City of Salem Pamela Everhart, Senior Vice President, Fidelity Brian Fairbank, Chairman, The Fairbank Group Representative Ann-Margaret Ferrante, 5th Essex District Leslie Gould, Executive Director, Greater Beverly Chamber of Commerce Leslie Greis, Owner and Director, Kinefac Corp. Secretary Michael J. Heffernan, Executive Office of Administration and Finance Judy Herrell, Owner and CEO, Herrell’s Ice Cream Karl Hetzler, President, H&S Tool and Engineering Wendy Hudson, Co-Founder, Cisco Brewing Michael Lauf, President and CEO, Cape Cod Health Care Senator Eric Lesser, 1st Hampden and Hampshire District David Lucchino, Co-founder, President and CEO, Frequency Therapeutics Sal Lupoli, CEO, Lupoli Companies Marcos Marrero, Director of Planning and Economic Development, City of Holyoke Dani Monroe, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Partners HealthCare Derek Oliver, Director, Government and Industry Affairs, Wayfair Luis Pedraja, President, Quinsigamond Community College Secretary Stephanie Pollack, Executive Office of Transportation Pam Randhawa, Founder and CEO, Empiriko Dan Rea, Executive VP, Real Estate Development, Pawtucket Red Sox Jody Rose, President, New England Venture Capital Association Roben Salinas, Founder, President and CEO, Parsagen Diagnostics Dorothy Savarese, President, Cape Cod Five Bank Secretary Katie Theoharides, Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs Todd Trapp, Chief Financial Officer, Abiomed Jean VanderGheynst, Dean, UMass Dartmouth Robin Ward, Secretary, Homebuilders and Remodelers Association, Mid-Cape Home Centers
Economic Development Engagement Sessions Taking Place Across Massachusetts, May 15 – June 13
Join Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy, along with municipal officials, legislators, and community and business leaders, for a regional engagement session to inform the Baker-Polito Administration’s economic development strategy for the next four years. The sessions are taking place in regions across the Commonwealth, including May 15/ North East / Salem May 16/ Pioneer Valley / Springfield May 21/ Merrimack Valley/ Lowell May 23/ South East/ Dartmouth May 28/ Greater Boston / Roxbury May 30/ Central Mass / Worcester June 4/ Berkshire County / North Adams June 13/ Cape & Islands / Chatham Find more details and registration information here. These engagement sessions offer an opportunity to connect with local economic development leaders on their priorities as the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development (EOHED) writes a new economic development plan to be signed by the Governor at the end of this year. The new economic development strategy will guide the administration’s legislative agenda. For questions, please contact Molly Bourque at firstname.lastname@example.org. if you wish to attend sessions in more than one region, you will need to register for each separately.
Asian Pacific-American Heritage Month in Massachusetts
Artists in Arita, Japan. Birdcage vase, about 1700, Porcelain, lacquer, iron, gold, and paper.© Peabody Essex Museum. Photography by Mark Sexton. May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month across the United States, a time to celebrate the rich communities that contribute so much to the United States, and to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates the Asian-American population in Massachusetts is 448,000, representing 6.6% of residents, with significant numbers in Quincy, Lowell, Malden, Lexington, Brookline, Cambridge, Burlington and Boston. Massachusetts also has strong business, educational and travel connections with Asian Pacific nations. Boston’s Logan International Airport has direct flights between Boston and Beijing, Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Seoul. A number of events and activities celebrating the Asian Pacific American community are taking place in Massachusetts. On February 1, Boston City Councilor Ed Flynn filed a “Resolution Recognizing the Contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders” as part of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, and held a reception for local Asian-Americans at Boston City Council chambers. On May 7, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh held a celebration at Boston City Hall “to joyously recognize the many contributions—historically and in present day—that Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have made to Boston, from enriching the city through food, arts, and culture, to energizing our philanthropic and civic spirit.” Part of City Hall’s celebration is an exhibit entitled First Transcontinental Railroad across North America, a 7-panel exhibit highlighting the sacrifices made by Chinese migrant workers in their instrumental efforts to build America’s railroad system, allowing the nation’s commerce to flourish. On Thursday, May 9, WGBH hosts its annual Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month Celebration at WGBH Studios in Brighton. It features a live interview with the first-ever Asian American US Cabinet Secretary, Norman Mineta, featured in the PBS documentary, Norman Mineta and his Legacy: An American Story, airing Mon, May 20. The event is free and open to the public but registration is required. The Peabody Essex Museum in Salem has one of the foremost collections of Asian art in North America. Among its exhibits: Japanomania! Japanese Art Goes Global features PEM’s celebrated Japanese export art collection, from the arrival of Portuguese merchants in the 1500s through Japan’s emergence on the world stage in the late 19th century and beyond. It runs through January 2021. In June, PEM opens a new exhibit, Kimsooja: Archive of Mind, an installation on the works of South Korean, multi-disciplinary conceptual artist Kimsooja. It runs through January 2020. On May 29, the Boston Asian American Film Festival (BAAFF) presents Short Waves: Stories Shaping our Community, with locally made, community-driven films. According to the US Library of Congress, Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month is designed to not only celebrate the Asian continent, but also the Pacific Islands of Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia. Massachusetts has an Asian-American Commission, a permanent body that works to recognize and highlight the vital contributions of Asian Americans to the social, cultural and political life of the Commonwealth.
Celebrate National Park Week in Massachusetts, April 20-28
Annisquam Lighthouse at the Essex National Heritage Area National Park Week is celebrated across the United States from April 20-28, 2019, paying homage to one of America’s greatest natural resources. In 2017, 331 million park visitors spent an estimated $18.2 billion in local gateway regions while visiting National Park Service lands across the country. These expenditures supported a total of 306,000 jobs, $11.9 billion in labor income, $20.3 billion in value added, and $35.8 billion in economic output in the national economy, according to the National Park Service. Massachusetts is proud of its national parks, historical sites, seashores, heritage areas and national scenic trails spread across the Commonwealth. These parks offer incredible opportunities to experience our state’s history and heritage, natural resources and the environment, maritime and industrial heritage as well as important political, literary and cultural figures ranging from John F. Kennedy and John Adams to Henry Longfellow and Frederick Law Olmsted. In 2017, visitors to Massachusetts national parks spent $539 million and attracted 10,376,681 visitors, according to National Park Service records. Here are fee-free days throughout the year during which visitors can enjoy national parks for free: April 20, 2019 (the first day of National Park Week) August 25, 2019 (the National Park Service’s birthday) September 28, 2019 (National Public Lands Day) November 11, 2019 (Veterans Day) Find out more about visiting Massachusetts at MassVacation.com.
Massport Welcomes Boston-Seoul Nonstop Flights with Korean Air & Delta Air Lines
Officials from Massport, Korean Air & Delta Air Lines Join Government and Tourism Leaders at Terminal E Ribbon Cutting Ceremony to Welcome the new Boston-Seoul Nonstop Route Korean Air, the world’s largest transpacific airline, launched a new nonstop service between Boston and Seoul on April 12, 2019 in cooperation with joint venture partner, Delta Air Lines. The Boston-Seoul service will be operated on Korean Air’s new 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft featuring six First Class sleeper suites, 18 Prestige business class sleeper suites, and 245 seats in economy class. The new route is part of Massport’s steady expansion of international flights to and from Boston’s Logan International Airport in recent years as Massachusetts and New England continue to attract both leisure and business travelers. John Jackson, Korean Air’s managing vice president, said, “As a major gateway for high tech industries, Boston is the most popular unserved point from Korea with rapidly growing demand to Asia. The city, with its numerous universities and colleges, is a growing New England hub attracting companies in fast-growing industries like IT, bio-technology, healthcare, finance and pharmaceuticals.” The new nonstop route will meet a steady demand for travelers who had to switch planes in another city to get here. In 2017, Massachusetts welcomed 73,000 South Korean travelers, who represented 3.1% of all international visitors to the Commonwealth, according to the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism. They spent $184 million and generated $11.8 million in state and local taxes. There are strong cultural ties between Massachusetts and Korea, dating back to 1953, when the Korean Society of Boston was established by professors at Harvard’s Yenching Institute and Boston University. Today, Boston is the third most popular American city for Korean students studying in the United States. There are currently over 3,000 Korean students studying at Harvard, MIT, Boston University, Boston College and Northeastern. Other universities with notable Korean presence include the Berklee College of Music, whose Korean Culture & Student Association bridges the rich musical traditions of Korea and the United States. And UMass/Amherst is developing major and minor degrees in Korean, offering classes in how to speak, read and write Korean. The Massachusetts Export Center works closely with American companies wishing to export lobsters, machinery or high technology abroad. Korea is Massachusetts’ 9th largest export partner, accounting for nearly $1.2 billion in exports, while importing $452 million in goods from Korea in 2017. At the same time, the Massachusetts Office of International Trade and Investment (MOITI) works with Korean companies seeking to invest in Massachusetts, especially in life sciences and innovation. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Cooperation in Life Sciences and High Technology Industries between the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the Seoul Metropolitan Government has been in place since 2011. For more information on visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Massachusetts Celebrates National Library Week, April 7-13
As libraries across the United States celebrate National Library Week (April 7-13) and honor the great work of librarians everywhere, the illustrious traditions of Massachusetts as a center of learning, education and free exchange of ideas comes to the fore. With over 370 public libraries and 1,400 academic and specialized libraries, according to the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners, we also have the nation’s first membership library (Boston Athenaeum, 1807) and the nation’s first public library (Boston Public Library, 1848). We have a presidential library (John F. Kennedy, 1979), hundreds of outstanding university libraries, two federal archives, and the world’s largest repository of books for the blind and deaf (Perkins School for the Blind). First celebrated in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA). This year’s theme, “Libraries = Strong Communities,” underscores the value of libraries both as educational resources and as centers for residents and visitors to gather together for cultural and civic pursuits. The State Library of Massachusetts, located at the State House, has a vast collection of important government documents dating back to the founding of the nation. It also has official documents pertaining to Massachusetts’ participation in various wars, and all of the regulations and laws passed by the Massachusetts Legislature in its history. The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum at Columbia Point in Dorchester is a federal repository of the papers and holdings of President Kennedy and his administration. The JFK is a treasure trove of information about the state’s native son, and also materials on mid-20th century politics in America. The National Archives hold the permanent archival records of the federal government. Massachusetts is fortunate to have two of the thirteen regional facilities located around the country, in Waltham and Pittsfield. The Massachusetts Health Sciences Library Network is a consortium of libraries that include medical research centers and hospitals, publishing companies and college libraries with significant collections in health sciences. Digital Commonwealth is a non-profit collaborative organization disseminates cultural heritage materials held by over 180 Massachusetts libraries, museums, historical societies, and archives. You can find more about the state’s libraries by visiting the Massachusetts Library System, Massachusetts Library Association, You can search for libraries by topics or by town here.
Baker-Polito Administration Names Tim McGourthy as New HED Deputy Secretary
Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy announced Timothy J. McGourthy as incoming Deputy Secretary, effective March 4. McGourthy will assume the role vacated by former Deputy Secretary Carolyn Kirk, who was named executive director of Massachusetts Technology Collaborative earlier this month. McGourthy has been engaged on policy development for local, state, and federal initiatives over his 25-year career. In the last twenty years, McGourthy held public sector and nonprofit executive roles focused on the economic growth of Boston and Worcester, most recently serving as the executive director of the Worcester Regional Research Bureau, a position he has held since February 2014. “I am thrilled to welcome Tim McGourthy to the Baker-Polito Administration,” said Secretary Kennealy. “Tim brings a wealth of policy expertise and a deep understanding of municipal government and collaboration at the regional and state level. His work in Massachusetts’ two largest cities, particularly the last 12 years in Worcester, has laid the foundation for a great deal of regional and statewide economic success, and I look forward to leveraging his insights and experiences as we work to spur new jobs and economic prosperity across the state.” As Deputy Secretary, McGourthy will support the management of the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development (EOHED), which works to advance the economic opportunity for residents, partner with local leaders to pursue economic priorities, and engage with businesses to support job creation. EOHED is comprised of several agencies, including Housing and Community Development and the Office of Consumer Affairs, has a $1.4 billion budget and approximately 1,000 employees. “I am honored and excited to be serving in the Baker-Polito Administration and to work alongside Secretary Kennealy to ensure economic growth continues, across all regions of the state,” said McGourthy. “I have witnessed first-hand the partnership embodied by this administration and how that has translated into growth and positive momentum in the Worcester region and beyond, and I look forward to contributing to the team’s continued work on behalf of each and every community in this great Commonwealth.” ### About Timothy J. McGourthy: Timothy J. McGourthy has been engaged on policy development for local, state, and federal initiatives over his 25-year career. Over the last two decades, McGourthy held public sector and nonprofit executive roles focused on the economic growth of Massachusetts’ two largest cities. McGourthy previously served as Executive Director of the Worcester Regional Research Bureau, Inc., a position he held since February 2014. McGourthy focused on economic development for the City of Worcester from 2006 to 2014, serving as Chief Development Officer for the City, as well as Chief Executive Officer of the Worcester Redevelopment Authority, where he oversaw nine City divisions related to business development, culture, housing, neighborhoods, planning, workforce development, and youth. He worked closely with public and private partners to facilitate transformative redevelopment projects for Worcester. From 1999-2006, McGourthy served as Director of Policy at the Boston Redevelopment Authority, Boston’s planning and economic development agency, where he crafted policies and programmatic solutions to a broad range of issues impacting the growth and development of the city. McGourthy’s research experience at Carnegie Corporation of New York explored issues of social development and international affairs. He also worked for Lincoln Institute of Land Policy and the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Governor’s Office. He has served as a member of Governor Charlie Baker’s Commission on the Future of Transportation in the Commonwealth, the Baker-Polito Better Government Transition Committee, and the Massachusetts Economic Development Policy Council as well as the City of Worcester’s Tax Policy Committee. McGourthy holds a bachelor’s degree in history from The College of William & Mary, a master’s degree in government from The Johns Hopkins University, and a master’s degree in public policy and urban planning from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. He is adjunct faculty at Clark University. McGourthy and his family live in Worcester.
Massachusetts Offers Outdoor Fun during School Vacation Week
The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT) is promoting dozens of outdoor activities across the Commonwealth for families to enjoy during School Vacation Week, February 16-24, 2019. “From alpine ski resorts and cross-country skiing to ice skating, snowboarding and hiking, Massachusetts is a winter wonderland each February, and we urge residents and visitors to take advantage of all we have to offer during the upcoming school vacation week,” says Executive Director Francois L. Nivaud of the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism. Among the winter assets in Massachusetts are 12 alpine ski resorts, with downhill options for skiers and snowboarders at all levels, as well as snow tubing, cross country and snowshoeing facilities. Four ski resorts are running a Learn to Ski contest, which includes a free day of lessons, rental and a lift pass for two skiers or riders. Winners are selected on February 22, 2019. The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), which manages 450,000 acres of open space, has 84 family-friendly activities being offered in state parks across Massachusetts with 12 Visitor Centers open and fully staffed. The Trustees of the Reservations, which manages 100 properties spanning 27,000+ acres, is offering its Staycation with the Trustees program of outdoor activities, from drop-off and drop-in programs at local farms, to sledding, snowshoe walks and scavenger hunts. The Mass Audubon Society has a full week of children’s activities, including birdwatching and nature walks, at outdoor facilities throughout the Commonwealth. In addition, MOTT has compiled a resource of more School Vacation Week Activities, both outdoors and indoors. For year-round information on visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com. About the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism: MOTT’s mission is to promote Massachusetts as both a leisure and business travel destination for domestic and international markets and to contribute to the growth of the Commonwealth’s economy. MOTT works closely with 16 regional tourism councils across the state, and with larger tourism alliances such as Discover New England and BrandUSA.
National Parks of Boston Resume Operations
The National Parks of Boston released a statement today announcing the resumption of operations and activities at Boston National Historical Park, Boston African American National Historic Site and the Boston Harbor Islands State and National Park. “Limited operations begin on January 26 and 27, 2019 (and) It is expected that the parks will be running on their regular winter schedule the week of January 28, 2019,” according to the statement, which urges patrons to check the respective web sites for further details. National Parks of Boston General Superintendent Michael Creasey said, “the generosity from the Boston community and the many partners that supported the National Parks of Boston during the lapse in Federal appropriations has been incredible and very much appreciated. So many people offered all types of support to park staff and their families during the period of the government shutdown, we are most grateful.” “The nearly 100 National Park employees are happy to be back at work, serving the American people and welcoming visitors to their national parks,” the statement added. About the National Parks of Boston This unique collaboration of government owned and privately owned and operated historic sites is associated with the colonial struggle for independence and the birth and growth of the United States. These nationally significant landscapes and buildings include the Boston Harbor Islands, African Meeting House and the Black History Trail, the Freedom Trail sites including: Old South Meeting House, Old State House, Faneuil Hall, Old North Church, Paul Revere House, Bunker Hill Monument, Bunker Hill Museum, Dorchester Heights Monument, and the Charlestown Navy Yard, including USS Constitution, the USS Constitution Museum, and USS Cassin Young.
Berklee High School Jazz Festivals Attracts Top Musicians & Students to Boston
Participants in the 2018 Berklee High School Jazz Festival (Courtesy of Berklee) The annual Berklee High School Jazz Festival, the largest of its kind in the United States, takes place at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston’s Back Bay on Saturday, January 26, 2019. Admission is free and the event is open to the general public. Here is a schedule of events. The festival features 133 top-ranked jazz ensembles from 16 states and territories, from California to Puerto Rico, and from Florida to Maine. The bands are competing for partial scholarships to Berklee’s Five Week Summer Performance Program, while individual musicians are auditioning for tuition scholarships toward the full-time program or the summer performance program. Here are details on the awards. According to a 2017 study by the Barr Foundation, the non-profit arts industry, which is part of the creative economy in Massachusetts supports 73,000 jobs while generating $1.4 billion in household income and $2.2 billion in economic activity. Berklee College of Music is considered the preeminent institute of contemporary music and the performing arts, according to its website. Berklee’s commitment to arts education is reflected in the work of its students, faculty and alumni – hundreds of whom have been recognized with Grammy, Tony, Oscar and Emmy awards. Find more about jazz in Massachusetts at massjazz.com. For information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Massachusetts Celebrates Lunar New Year in February 2019
Chinese New Year Concert at Berklee College of Music Massachusetts residents and visitors are preparing to celebrate Lunar New Year this winter, a significant holiday for more than 426,225 Asian-Americans living in the Bay State, and for billions of Asians around the world. Lunar New Year has many different names: the Vietnamese community calls its Lunar Year celebration Tết, while South Koreans call theirs Wondan and in China it is called Chinese New Year. The celebration goes back over 2,000 years to the Eastern Han Dynasty, when ancient Chinese developed Chinese Zodiac Signs to mark the New Year, using a 12 year cycle of deliberately-chosen animals. 2019 is the Year of the Pig. Illustration by MOTT Intern Rebecca Chin, Fitchburg State University January 30 TCSA’s spring 2019 Lunar New Year Celebration Taiwanese & Chinese Students’ Association Campus Center, UMass, Amherst 7 – 9 p.m. Through February 18 Reunion Dinners for Chinese New Year Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Boston Evenings February 2 2019 Chinese New Year Celebration Potter’s House, Malden 6:30 – 9:30 p.m. February 2 Boston NKAA Chinese New Year Party Alister by Mill Creek, Quincy 6. – 9 p.m. February 2 Newton Cantonese School Chinese New Year Celebration Bigelow Middle School, Newton 9 a.m. –Noon February 2 2019 Chinese New Year Celebration Gala Greater Lawrence Technical School, Andover 3 – 8 p.m. February 2 Celebrate Lunar New year at Franklin Park Zoo Franklin Park Dorchester, Boston 10:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. February 2-3 Year of the Pig Painting Artbeat Creativity Store and Studio, Arlington 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. February 3 Vietnamese Tet Celebration of Lunar New Year Grand Ballroom, UMass, Lowell 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. February 4 2019 Chinese New Year Celebration Fo Guang Buddhist Temple, Cambridge 10 a.m. February 7 Berklee College of Music Presents Chinese New year Concert Berklee Performance Center, Back Bay, Boston 8 p.m. February 8 Asian Cultural Society Lunar New Year Tilton Hall, Clark University, Worcester 6 – 9 p.m. February 9 VietAid Tet 2019 Vietnamese American Initiative for Development Dorchester 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. February 9 Chinese New Year Gala + Dinner Boston Marriott Hotel, Burlington 6 p.m. February 9 Tanglewood Marionettes Present The Dragon King John F. Kennedy Presidential Library Dorchester, Boston 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. February 9 MFA’s Lunar New Year Celebration Museum of Fine Arts, Boston 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. February 9 Family Day! Celebrating Chinese New Year Norman Rockwell Museum, Stockbridge 1 – 4 p.m. February 10 Chinese Dulcimer Guzheng Youth Band Newton Free Library, Newton 2 – 3 p.m. February 10 31st Annual Lunar New year Festival North Quincy High School, Quincy Noon – 5 p.m. February 10 2019 Chinese New Year Celebration Fo Guang Buddhist Temple, Cambridge 5 p.m. February 16 Lunar New Year Celebration Peabody Essex Museum, Salem 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. February 16 SAPA-NE Chinese New Year Celebration 2019 Trinitarian Congregational Church, Wayland 4:30 – 9:00 p.m. February 17 Chinese New Year Lion Parade Street Photography Class Jaho Coffee Roaster & Wine Bar, Downtown Crossing, Boston 9:30 a.m. – Noon February 25 HMS-CSSA 2019 Chinese New Year Gala Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Yawkey Building, Boston 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. Find out more about visiting Massachusetts at MassVacation.com.
Tourism Leaders Hold China Workshop to Increase Chinese Visitors to Boston & Massachusetts
Pictured: from left, Francois Nivaud, Brad Rice, Sharon Xu, Pat Moscaritolo and David O’Donnell Chinese visitors coming to Boston and Massachusetts continue to break records for visitation numbers and spending, according to the China 3.0 Workshop held at the Colonnade Hotel in Boston on Tuesday, January 15, 2019. Organized by the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau (GBCVB), Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT), Massachusetts Convention Center Authority (MCCA), American Express and other travel and hospitality partners, the Workshop attracted 125 participants who came to learn ways to tap into the lucrative Chinese inbound market. In 2017, 301,000 Chinese visitors came to Boston, a 153% increase over the past 5 years. GBCVB President & CEO Pat Moscaritolo and China-Friendly Marketing Committee Chair Brad Rice singled out three individuals who have driven the China initiative and its record-breaking results: Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism Executive Director Francois Nivaud, GBCVB Senior Manager of Media Relations David O’Donnell, and GBCVB Chinese Marketing Manager Sharon Xu. “A destination does not have this kind of success by accident,” said Moscaritolo. Massport Director of Aviation Ed Freni gave an update on the expansion and upgrades taking place at Boston Logan International Airport to meet the growing demand from domestic and international visitors in the coming years. MOTT’s Francois Nivaud spoke about his agency’s efforts to attract visitors, including cooperative marketing campaigns, sales missions & training events, and familiarization visitors from Chinese tour operators and media. At the China 3.0 workshop, multiple presenters referenced 2018 data that shows continued growth for Boston even as inbound numbers from China have slowed across the nation. Scott Johnson reported that Boston’s market share is on the rise and that this will result in even more impressive numbers from China to Boston in 2018 and 2019. Carla Cabrera, Hainan Airlines’ Director of Sales for North America, revealed that Boston is now Hainan’s most successful route in North America, eclipsing Seattle in 2018. And Expedia Senior Market Manager for Boston, Alex Fromson, shared robust results from a recent holiday booking campaign that Expedia and the GBCVB collaborated on. Tourism leaders are optimistic that Chinese numbers will continue to grow. “In addition to the robust leisure market that attracts visitors from around the world, Massachusetts excels in education, sports, conventions and business opportunities, and these sectors offer growth potential in the Chinese market,” said Nivaud. “The goal for Boston, going forward, is 400,000 Chinese visitors by 2020,” said Moscaritolo. “We are confident we can get there because our China initiative, led by our China Marketing Committee team, will continue to engage this market and execute strategies to generate more business from China for Boston and for our member companies.”
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker Delivers Inaugural Address for Second Term
On Thursday, January 3, 2019 Governor Charlie Baker delivered his second inaugural address from the House Chamber of the Massachusetts State House. Here are the Governor’s full remarks as prepared for delivery: Here are excerpts from Governor Baker’s speech: “Think about the Commonwealth’s leadership on national issues. “We have the highest rate of health care coverage in the nation. But the story was written across two decades, ten legislative sessions, five governors and four Presidents. “We have best in the nation gun laws, a story that was written across multiple legislative sessions and several Governors and was almost always bipartisan. “We have a K-12 education system that, despite its limitations, is the envy of the country. “This story was written by a large cast of leaders and contributors across decades of deliberation and action. “As we approach the third decade of the 21st century, we’re engaged in a number of difficult policy issues. Some will be with us long after our time on Beacon Hill is done. “But it’s incumbent on us to pursue these tasks with foresight, intelligence and commitment, so that we can rest assured that when our time is done, those who come after us will be able to build on the foundation we’ve established. “As I look forward, I’m grateful that we’re taking on difficult policy issues from a position of strength. “Massachusetts no longer has a structural budget deficit. In fact, we ended last year with a major budget surplus. Deposited over $650 million into our Stabilization Fund. And anticipate making another major deposit to that Fund at the end of this fiscal year. And we did it without raising taxes. “We delivered huge environmental benefits and lower energy prices. And now everybody wants to duplicate our process. “Our regulatory reform project reduced the complexity of state government across the board, allowing our small businesses to become more competitive in a dynamic economy. “And our ‘get stuff done’ approach with public private partnerships in economic development, advanced manufacturing, robotics and smart materials has created jobs and opportunity across the Commonwealth. “As a result, our economy is booming. “We have more people working than at any time in state history. Over 200,000 jobs have been created since we took office. Our labor force participation rate is at an all-time high. And people are moving to Massachusetts because we offer good jobs and opportunity. “Thanks to the hard work of so many, the state of our Commonwealth is strong! “By putting the public interest ahead of partisan politics, we’ve made our Commonwealth a better place to live for our residents. But there’s always much left to do. “There’s also much to do in transportation. “I’ll begin with a quick shout out to our Transportation Futures Commission. Predicting a future where there is so much possibility is difficult. They did great work and I want to highlight some of their recommendations. “First, continue to invest in public transportation. “This is an area in which the Commonwealth sat on its hands for far too many years and we’re all paying the price for it. “Over the course of the next five years, the T plans to spend over $8 billion on infrastructure, much of which will be invested in its core system. This is more than twice what has ever been spent in any 5-year period. “This will be no small task. “One of the reasons previous administrations didn’t invest in the core system is the complexity of upgrading and modernizing a system that operates 20 hours a day, seven days a week. “The constant tug between getting people where they need to go and disrupting that system to make it better is a big challenge. But it’s one that must be identified, scoped and overcome. “The T also needs to leverage its automated fare system once it’s in place in 2020. For the first time, that system will give the T real time data on how its riders use the system. That creates huge opportunities to improve service. To think differently about fares, routes and pricing. And to modernize operations to better serve customers. “Second, we must make the investments in public infrastructure that will enable the next generation of zero emission and autonomous vehicles to thrive here in the Commonwealth. “Getting this right will require unprecedented collaboration with local government and our New England neighbors, as well as innovative partnerships with the private sector. “Third, reduce greenhouse gas emissions within the transportation system. “The work we’re poised to do with other Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states should produce a cap and investment system for transportation that mirrors our successful model for energy. “It will create the largest program of its kind in US history. “Finally, we need to more fully appreciate the relationship between where people live and where they work and how state and local government policies affect their ability to get from one to the other. “I’ve spoken before about this housing crisis. “For over 20 years, we’ve produced less than half the new units of housing that we produced like clockwork in the previous forty years. “As a result, we have limited inventory. And the inventory we have gets priced out of sight, forcing people to live farther and farther away from where they work. “I believe that our housing bill was a strong step in the right direction to deal with this. It respected the need for communities to plan for themselves, but created incentives to tie development more closely to overarching strategies concerning transportation and land use generally. In the end, it failed because it was too much for some and not enough for others. “We shouldn’t let the perfect become the enemy of the good. “Building a stronger, more equitable, more resilient and more successful Commonwealth rests on several pillars. But one of the most important ones is delivering a big increase in housing production. We need to get this done. “Massachusetts is also a national leader in health care. We’re one of the healthiest states in the nation. And we have the highest rate of health care coverage. “Our health care cluster is a wonder, economically and clinically. It’s constantly delivering solutions to some of the most urgent and challenging problems facing patients and their families. “The flip side is the price we pay. “Small businesses in Massachusetts have among the highest health insurance costs in the country. The price for the same medical service can vary by as much as 300% depending on where it’s provided. “Our community hospitals continue to struggle. And, ironically, some of the Commonwealth’s rules make it tough to practice modern medicine. “Later this year, we will file legislation to address these issues. By expanding the use of telemedicine, rethinking some of our scope of practice guidelines and dealing with the parity issues that have negatively affected individuals and families dealing with mental health issues. “The fact that 351 cities and towns in this Commonwealth have worked with state government on over 800 best practices and now use that program to spread the word on other smarter ways to deliver services doesn’t make much news. “The work we’ve done together to invest billions of dollars in housing, downtown and regional economic development and public/private partnerships in communities across the Commonwealth are stories that come and go. “The 16,000 trees we’ve planted and thousands of LED lights we’ve installed with our colleagues in local government is just doing our job. “Each day, the wheels turn, and when they turn well they build strong communities. Support great schools. Grow the economy. Clean up the environment. Promote justice. And give people a chance. “Those wheels create hope, opportunity and possibility . “Over the past four years, Lieutenant Governor Polito and I have heard time and time again that the way we all work together is a model for the nation. “People like our collaborative approach to governing. And they say they’re proud to be from Massachusetts! “And so am I! “This state is bursting with talent, humor and decency. Boldness and common sense. Our abiding sense of patriotism, belonging and community has made us strong and has carried us forward for almost 400 years. “Let others engage in cheap shots and low blows. Let’s make our brand of politics positive and optimistic, instead of cruel and dark. “And instead of the bickering and name calling that dominates much of today’s public debate, let’s build on the work of those who came before us. “And make our work about how we can make this great state better for the people who call this glorious place ‘home.’ “God Bless This Commonwealth. “God Bless the United States of America.” ###
Baker-Polito Administration Announces Transition at the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development
Photo (l-r), Secretary Ash, Governor Baker, Lieutenant Governor Polito and Incoming Secretary Kennealy Governor Charlie Baker and Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito announced the departure of Housing and Economic Development (HED) Secretary Jay Ash, and introduced as incoming Secretary current HED Assistant Secretary for Business Growth, Mike Kennealy. Secretary Kennealy will be sworn in on Friday, December 28, 2018. Governor Charlie Baker said, “From day one, Jay has worked tirelessly with members of the Legislature, local officials and private companies to enhance economic development, housing and the life sciences industry in Massachusetts. Our administration will always be particularly thankful for his work to help reduce the number of homeless families living in hotels and motels, from over 1,500 to less than 40, and his focus on achieving economic growth across the entire Commonwealth. We thank Jay for his public service, wish him well in the future and look forward to welcoming Mike to the cabinet.” Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito said, “Massachusetts cities and towns have had a tremendous partner and collaborator in Secretary Jay Ash throughout our administration’s first term,” “Drawing upon his successful career as Chelsea city manager, Jay has a keen understanding of municipal concerns and has helped local leaders build stronger communities. From the substantial reach and impact of MassWorks to the development of new tools to prepare underutilized sites for development and create collaborative workspaces, Jay has been a driving force in economic growth. I join Governor Baker in wishing him all the best and look forward to working alongside Mike going forward.” Secretary Jay Ash said, “I am proud of what we have accomplished together to grow and strengthen Massachusetts’ economy over the past four years as we worked to empower communities to achieve their economic potential, ensuring prosperity could be shared across the Commonwealth. Governor Baker and Lieutenant Governor Polito led by example, engaging local and state officials and our vibrant business and nonprofit sectors in an active dialogue, and we followed by identifying opportunities for investment and areas where we could create more support. It was an honor to visit over 200 cities and towns over the last four years. I have been energized and inspired by the ingenuity and tenacity of our municipal, community and business leaders, and I am grateful to Governor Baker and Lieutenant Governor Polito for asking me to serve in this capacity. Incoming Secretary Mike Kennealy is uniquely qualified and played an instrumental role in our first term achievements. Finally, I would like to thank the talented and committed professionals in EOHED and across the administration, who have been generous with their time and talent, and totally committed to the Commonwealth.” Incoming Secretary Kennealy said, “It has been an honor to serve as Assistant Secretary for Business Growth under Secretary Ash, Governor Baker and Lt. Governor Polito over the last four years and I am excited to take on the role of Secretary. I have been inspired by the ingenuity and drive in our diverse communities and companies and I look forward to working with the Administration, Legislature, local officials and members of the non-profit and private sectors across the Commonwealth to grow Massachusetts’ nation-leading innovation economy and continue to make progress on important issues like affordable housing and homelessness.” Under Secretary Ash’s leadership, the Baker-Polito Administration conceived and pursued an economic development strategy entitled “Opportunities for All” to bring vitality to communities, prosperity to people and growth for businesses in all regions of the Commonwealth. Key accomplishments include: • Transitioned over 1,400 homeless families out of hotels and motels, from 1,500 in 2015 to under 40 today. • Partnered with the Legislature to pass two billion-dollar economic development packages in 2016 and 2018, the $1.8 billion housing bonding bill and a $623 million life sciences bill to ensure our continued leadership in this sector on a national and global basis. • Delivered $12.5 million in state funding to the Berkshire Innovation Center in Pittsfield, a state of the art facility that will have the potential to serve as life sciences hub for the region. • Supported Worcester’s revitalization, including the redevelopment of the Canal District with a recently-announced $35 million infrastructure and HDIP affordable housing investment, made in conjunction with Pawtucket Red Sox relocation, announced in August. • Partnered with Springfield on six projects designed to revitalize its downtown revitalization, including the October announcement of the $2.5 refurbishment of the Paramount Theater, a lynchpin project for the city. • Played an important role in Lynn’s economic revitalization as a member of the Lynn Economic Advancement and Development (LEAD) Team – launching a number of commercial and housing projects, including Gateway North residences, which opened in 2018. • Served on Governor Baker’s Workforce Skills Cabinet (comprised of EOLWD, EOHED, EOE secretaries) and drove the creation of 7 regional workforce plans, over $50 million in Skills Capital Grants and the launch of the first registered tech apprenticeship program in the state. • Helped facilitate expansions from leading companies like GE, Kronos, MassMutual, MilliporeSigma and Siemens. About Mike Kennealy: In early 2015, Mike Kennealy joined the Baker-Polito Administration as Assistant Secretary for Business Growth in the Executive Office of Housing & Economic Development. As Assistant Secretary, Kennealy has played an integral role in advancing the administration’s strategy for job creation and business development across the entire Commonwealth and has provided leadership in key sectors, including serving as co-chair of the board of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center. Kennealy combines a successful track record in the private sector with a strong commitment to the public good. He began his career in private equity at TA Associates, a Boston-based firm. In 1997, he joined Spectrum Equity, a private equity firm founded in 1994 with offices in Boston and San Francisco. During his more than 15 years at Spectrum, he helped grow the firm to become an established market leader with nearly $5 billion in assets under management and investments in over 100 high-growth internet, software and information services companies. After his career in private equity, Kennealy spent two years as Special Advisor to the Receiver at Lawrence Public Schools, where he worked with the state-appointed superintendent/receiver on strategic and financial initiatives to support the school district’s turnaround plan. Kennealy and his family live in Lexington, Massachusetts, where they have been highly involved in town government, education and youth sports. He has served on the Board of Trustees of St. John’s Prep in Danvers since 2009 and currently serves as Chairman, and he serves on the Board of Visitors for The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences at Dartmouth College. Kennealy received a A.B. in Government from Dartmouth College and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
Export Leaders Discuss U.S. Trade Policy at Annual Export Expo in Boston
U.S. Economic Sanctions Panel: Peter Liston, Barb Secor, Alexandra Lopez-Casero and moderator Gwendolyn Jaramillo. Over 300 export leaders and companies from throughout the state and region attended the annual Export Expo held on December 8 at the Massachusetts Transportation Building in Park Square, Boston. Organized by the Massachusetts Export Center, which is part of the Small Business Development Center Network, this year’s expo focused on the rapidly-changing global trade environment, including recent and anticipated shifts in U.S. trade policy. Hot-button issues such as China and tariff policy, tightening foreign investment policy, USMCA and free trade policy, export controls, sanctions and enforcement were addressed, with a focus on helping companies navigate a dynamic and increasingly complex global trade environment. “We are pleased to organize the Export Expo for the state’s global trade community each year,” said Mass Export Center Director Paula Murphy. “This year, there have been a number of critical trade policy developments involving tariffs, foreign investment, export controls, sanctions and more. We are delighted and honored to host a number of influential speakers at this year’s Expo to provide up-to-the-minute updates on these issues for Massachusetts businesses.” Among the keynote speakers were U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Administration Richard Ashooh; Managing Director of Rock Creek Global Advisors Clay Lowery; and Senior VIP of U.S. China Business Council Erin Ennis. Murphy presented Brian Amero, director of Global Compliance and Ethics at Teradyne, with the Center’s first-ever Export Champion Award for serving as the Center’s Compliance Alliance Advisory Board chair and for his continuous efforts in supporting Made-in-Massachusetts exporters. New at the Export Expo this year was US-UK Trade Agreement Listening Tour, formed as the U.S. prepares for a trade agreement with the UK. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) has commissioned an investigation to be conducted by the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) on barriers for U.S. SMEs exporting to the UK, including challenges associated with the upcoming Brexit implementation. Participants were invited to provide input on what is expected to be a landmark trade agreement with one of Massachusetts’ most important trading partners. Sponsors of the Export Expo included The Provident Bank, Foley & Hoag, Trade Consulting Services, Descartes, TMF Group, KPMG, Associated Industries of Massachusetts, U.S. Commercial Service and the US-China Business Council. In addition to the sponsors, a number of government agencies exhibited at the Expo, including Mass Office of International Trade & Development (MOITI), Mass Department of Agricultural Resources, MassDeveloment, Small Business Association and Massport. “The Massachusetts Export Center’s annual expo is always a highlight for the international business community,” said Executive Director Mark F. Sullivan of Massachusetts Office of International Trade & Investment (MOITI). “Whether you’re an export veteran or new-to-exporting, there are always topics of interest and industry experts to hear from. For MOITI, it is a great opportunity to meet with small businesses and present the State Trade Expansion Program (STEP).”
John Coltrane Memorial Concert Showcases Boston’s Vibrant Jazz Community
Stan Strickland and Bill Pierce In 1977 a group of Boston musicians – Hayes Burnet, Syd Smart and Leonard Brown – initiated the John Coltrane Memorial Concert as a way of recognizing the genius of one of America’s greatest musicians and composers. The concert venue changed for the first several years before moving permanently to Northeastern University, where Dr. Leonard Brown was hired as Associate Professor of African American Studies and Music. Fast forward four decades later, and the 41st Annual John Coltrane Memorial Concert remains a centerpiece of Boston’s vibrant jazz scene. The concert is set to take place on Saturday, December 15 at Northeastern’s Blackman Auditorium under the musical direction of Dr. Carl Atkins. It is an evening of reflection and re-animation of John Coltrane’s compositions, legacy and philosophy. This year’s concert honors two master JCMC alumni: Bill Pierce and Stan Strickland, both of whom have made indelible musical contributions to the world. Purchase tickets here. The success of the annual concert has been recognized by fans of jazz and by local public officials. In 2017 Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker gave the John Coltrane Memorial Concert an official citation on the occasion of its 40th anniversary, and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh presented a John Coltrane Memorial Concert proclamation. Read this 2011 MassJazz interview with Dr. Leonard Brown talking about John Coltrane and his legacy. For information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
New Massachusetts Law Promotes Civic Education for Students
Governor Charlie Baker recently signed into law S2631, An Act to promote and enhance civic engagement (S2631) to enable students in Massachusetts to gain a new appreciation and understanding of history and civics. Joining Governor Baker at the signing were Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Education Secretary James Peyser, Senate President Emerita Harriette Chandler, JFK Library Executive Director Steven M. Rothstein, EMK Institute President Mary Grant, Media Literacy Now President Erin McNeill, Generation Citizen Massachusetts Executive Director Arielle Jennings as well as representatives from UTEC Lowell & Teens Leading the Way, local students and members of the Legislature. This new law will make it a requirement for Massachusetts public high schools and school districts serving eighth-grade students to provide at least one student-led, non-partisan civics project for each student. These projects can be individual, small group, or class wide and they must be designed to promote student abilities related to the analysis of complex issues; consideration of different perspectives; logical reasoning with supportive evidence; engagement in civil discourse, and understanding of the connections between federal, state, and local policies, including those that may impact the student’s school or community. Under the new law, a student who chooses not to participate in a particular group or class-wide project must be offered the opportunity to develop an individual civics project, with approval by the principal. This bill also creates a Civics Project Trust Fund, which will be used to assist Massachusetts communities with implementing history and civics education state requirements, particularly in underserved communities. In addition, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), in consultation with the Secretary of State, will work to form a non-partisan high school voter challenge program to raise awareness for eligible students to register or pre-register to vote. This bill complements recent actions taken by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. In June, the Board voted to approve a revision of the History and Social Sciences curriculum framework, which will improve the impact of civics education across multiple grade levels and subject areas. Education Secretary James Peyser said, “Civics education is about both learning and doing, and effective civic engagement is not simply about advocacy or action, it’s about listening, questioning, respectful dialogue, and compromise. In the end, civics should help our young people develop a love of our Commonwealth and our country and the democratic values they embody.”
TripAdvisor Unveils a New Site and Mobile Experience
TripAdvisor co-founder and CEO Stephen Kaufer introduces the new site TripAdvisor, a Massachusetts company based in Needham, announced plans to launch a new site and mobile experience that will make it easier for its customers to enhance their travel by curating social media influencers and select travel media like National Geographic and Conde-Nast Traveler. Currently in beta, the new TripAdvisor site and mobile experience is set to launch globally to the public later this year across all markets and languages where the company operates. TripAdvisor co-founder and CEO Stephen Kaufer said at a presentation in New York City, “Years ago, we revolutionized how people planned their trips by enabling travelers to benefit from the wisdom of the crowds. We have the most robust data helping us understand what all of you are going through when you’re planning this trip—which stage you’re in, where you’re looking, the past trips you’ve taken.” To date, more than 500 social media influencers, well-known consumer brands, publishers and travel partners have joined the new TripAdvisor. In addition, TripAdvisor’s team of destination experts and TripAdvisor Media Group brands, including Smarter Travel, Cruise Critic and TheFork.com, will also contribute to the site experience through unique profiles. Members will be able to follow favorite brands like National Geographic, Condé Nast Traveler, Travel Channel, Business Insider & Insider Guides, PopSugar, Great Big Story, Pandora Music, GoPro, Goop, NYC & Company (via their consumer-facing tourism website, nycgo.com), Nashville Music City, and The Knot, among many others. Members will also be able to follow leading social media influencers like television personality and restaurateur Giada De Laurentiis, as well as travel bloggers, like TravelBabbo. For information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com. About TripAdvisor TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel site, enables travelers to unleash the full potential of every trip. With over 661 million reviews and opinions covering the world’s largest selection of travel listings worldwide – covering approximately 7.7 million accommodations, airlines, experiences, and restaurants — TripAdvisor provides travelers with the wisdom of the crowds to help them decide where to stay, how to fly, what to do and where to eat. TripAdvisor also compares prices from more than 200 hotel booking sites so travelers can find the lowest price on the hotel that’s right for them. TripAdvisor-branded sites are available in 49 markets, and are home to the world’s largest travel community of 456 million average monthly unique visitors, all looking to get the most out of every trip. TripAdvisor: Know better. Book better. Go better.
Hawaiian Airlines says Aloha Massachusetts + New England
Massport announced that Hawaiian Airlines will begin nonstop service between Boston Logan International Airport and Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Oauu, Honolulu starting on April 4, 2019. At 5,095 miles, Hawaiian’s BOS-HNL route becomes the longest regularly scheduled domestic route in U.S. history, according to airline officials. Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker said, “The Commonwealth is excited to welcome Hawaiian Airlines to Logan Airport, providing a new connection between our states. This route will provide travelers from Hawaii direct access to all that the Commonwealth has to offer, including our nation-leading innovation economy, while also making travel for New England residents to Hawaii easier.” Hawai‘i Governor David Ige said, “It’s important for our residents and visitors to have direct access to strategic destinations, and I thank Hawaiian Airlines, as our hometown carrier, for making it easier to connect with Boston and the Northeast.” Massport CEO Tom Glynn said the new route is “Logan’s 76th nonstop domestic destination, and with New Englanders coming off a long winter this flight’s start date is worth the wait. Providing more options for passengers is our goal, and I expect passengers will love the Hawaiian Airlines traveling experience with all the airline has to offer.” Hawaiian Airlines President and CEO Peter Ingram said, “We look forward to sharing our warm hospitality with our New England guests whose vacation starts the minute they check in and step onto our plane.” Boston is the largest U.S. market without nonstop service to Hawai‘i with nearly 500 people flying between eastern New England and the islands on any given day. Boston’s world-class educational and medical facilities are among the many attractions drawing Hawai‘i travelers to the Bay State. This new route adds to Hawaiian Airlines’ global network. The market between Boston Logan International (BOS) and Honolulu’s Daniel K. Inouye International (HNL) airports last year generated about $76 million in ticket sales. To celebrate the only nonstop service connecting Boston and Hawaii, Hawaiian is offering special roundtrip fares of $617 in the main cabin and $1,776 in first class featuring luxurious lie-flat leather seats. (Tickets must be purchased by Sunday and are good for travel from April 4-30. Blackout dates for travel to Hawaii are April 12-14, and to Boston from April 19-21). Starting with the inaugural flight on April 4, HA90 will depart HNL every day but Tuesday and Wednesday at 1:45 p.m. and arrive at BOS the following morning at 6 a.m. Flight HA91 will depart BOS every day but Wednesday and Thursday at 8:55 a.m., except for Friday flights, which will depart at 8 a.m. The flights will arrive in Hawai‘i the same day at 2:35 p.m. and the Friday flight will arrive at 1:40 p.m. Both HNL arrival times offer guests ample time to settle into their accommodations and unwind with a Hawaiian sunset, or connect to Kaua‘i, Maui or the Island of Hawai‘i via the airline’s convenient schedule of some 170 daily interisland jet flights. Hawaiian’s Airbus A330 widebody aircraft offers spacious first class cabin featuring 18 lie-flat leather seats that transform into 180-degree beds at a roomy 20.5 inches wide and 76 inches long. Aligned in a 2-2-2 configuration, the seats are ideally tailored to leisure guests such as couples, families and honeymooners, while offering functionality to the business traveler. About Hawaiian Airlines Hawaiian® has led all U.S. carriers in on-time performance for each of the past 14 years (2004-2017) as reported by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Consumer surveys by Condé Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure and TripAdvisor have placed Hawaiian among the top of all domestic airlines serving Hawai‘i. Now in its 89th year of continuous service, Hawaiian is Hawai‘i’s biggest and longest-serving airline. Hawaiian offers non-stop service to Hawai‘i from more U.S. gateway cities (12) than any other airline, along with service from China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, American Samoa and Tahiti. Hawaiian also provides approximately 170 jet flights daily between the Hawaiian Islands, with a total of more than 250 daily flights system- wide.
Boston Area Church League Awards Honor Tourism, Sports & Business Leaders
Last week, business, government and sports leaders from greater Boston gathered for the 16th Annual Boston Area Church League (BACL) Awards Luncheon at the Hilton Boston Back Bay. Honorees included Boston Red Sox President & CEO Sam Kennedy, who received the Ted Williams Home Run for Humanity Award and Boston Police Department Commissioner William G. Gross, who received the Jim Rice Hall of Fame Award. Formed in 2002, BACL provides life enrichment services to youth at risk, utilizing key community partnerships and providing alternative out of school time programs that promote positive youth development, according to program founder Frank Jordan. BACL is a partnership between the Boston Red Sox, the Red Sox Foundation, the Boston Police Department, Boston Parks & Recreation, the City of Boston, the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department, YMCA, and the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau (GBCVB). Other honorees at the Awards Luncheon included President & Vice Chairman of Eastern Bank, Quincy Miller; GBCVB Senior VP of Sales Beth Stehley; Red Sox VP of Community, Alumni and Player Relations Pam Kenn; volunteer director Jerome Frazier; Boston Parks Commissioner Chris Cook; Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism Executive Director Francois-Laurent Nivaud; and GBCVB President & CEO Pat Moscaritolo. Francois-Laurent Nivaud (left) receives award from Tom Kershaw Moscaritolo, BACL chairman, said, “The lessons of hard work and teamwork brought to life by the game of baseball is cultivating tomorrow’s leaders and over the past 16 years has made a significant difference in our community. More than 300 kids each year benefit from BACL programs, with over 100 coaches and volunteers playing critical roles.” For year round sporting events in the Commonwealth, visit the Mass Sports Marketing Office. Find out about visiting Massachusetts at MassVacation.com.
MASSECON IS CELEBRATED ON ITS 25TH YEAR
Susan Houston of MassEcon receives a Governor’s Proclamation from EOHED Secretary Jay Ash As it celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2018, MassEcon is receiving well-deserved praise from government and business leaders throughout Massachusetts. Under the leadership of Susan Houston, MassEcon has become one of the state’s premier nonprofit business organizations, contributing to the growth and economic health of Massachusetts. At MassEcon’s 25th celebration this summer, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash described himself as not only a strong supporter of MassEcon as Secretary, but also as someone who relied heavily upon MassEcon when he was City Manager and before that Planning & Development Director in Chelsea. “There’s been a constant,” Ash said, “and that’s been all of us being able to rely on MassEcon as part of a great team that puts Massachusetts’ best foot forward.” Secretary Ash then read a proclamation from Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, which praised MassEcon for creating “an enduring partnership between the public and private sectors to grow Massachusetts as a competitive location for expanding businesses.” Founded in 1993 by a consortium of utility companies led by then-Boston Edison, and embraced by the William Weld administration, MassEcon was the first private-public partnership to promote Massachusetts as an exceptional place to do business. “I’m a huge MassEcon fan,” said Gloria Larson, former President of Bentley University and former Massachusetts Secretary of Economic Affairs. “I worked a lot with MassEcon, and it was really all about our regional and U.S. and global reach. It fit hand in glove with what Governor Weld and my team were trying to do, putting Massachusetts on the map with respect to economic goals.” A nonprofit organization with a membership of business, trade associations, universities, chambers, and state, local, and regional economic development agencies, MassEcon has been working to help businesses come to, expand in, and thrive in Massachusetts — from the Berkshires to Boston. Over its 25-year history, MassEcon has facilitated the location of 275 companies, associated with 30,000 jobs, as they expanded or relocated to Massachusetts. Its partners in this endeavor have included the Massachusetts Office of Business Development, MassDevelopment, Massport, the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, and scores of regional and local economic development groups. MassEcon’s unique position as a non-partisan entity allows the organization to serve as a bridge from one administration to the next – from the Weld to the Patrick to the Baker administrations. Each Governor during its 25 years has chosen to be with MassEcon at its signature events and its members, leadership, and staff have been selected to serve on boards and commissions that have influenced policy. Some of the “firsts” initiated by MassEcon include: The Site Finder Service, established in 1994, to enable companies to find the best place to locate within the Commonwealth The Massachusetts Industrial and Research Park Directory, published with NAIOP in 1996 The ReadyMass100 portfolio of vetted properties that are potential homes for new companies The Annual Corporate Welcome Reception hosting 136 companies new to Massachusetts from 16 different states and 24 different countries The Annual Team Massachusetts Economic Impact Awards honoring more than 250 companies from throughout the state that have contributed to the Massachusetts economy by adding approximately 19,000 jobs and investing approximately $5 billion Those honored last year added 1,000 jobs in the state, invested more than $381 million and expanded their facilities by more than 2 million square feet. “You have competed in all shapes and sizes and played in all kinds of spaces,” Gov. Charlie Baker told the winners and guests at the Awards luncheon last November. To help the Commonwealth grow its rich economic base, MassEcon each year hosts out-of-state events that introduce the assets of Massachusetts to corporate site selectors, those professionals on the front lines representing companies considering expanding or relocating. In 2018, MassEcon hosted hospitality receptions in New York City, San Francisco, and Washington D.C., and took the Massachusetts story on the road to South Carolina and Atlanta. For almost 20 years, MassEcon’s monthly newsletter “In Brief” has been bringing news of company expansions, product launches, and the advantages of doing business in the Bay State. Stephen Flavin, Chairman of the Board during MassEcon’s 25th year and Vice President for Academic and Corporate Engagement at Worcester Polytechnic Institute remarked that “The solid foundation that has been built over the years puts the organization in great shape to reach even higher levels of achievement.”
Governor Baker & Plymouth 400 Announce Signature Events for 2020
On August 28, Governor Charlie Baker joined Plymouth 400 officials and elected officials to announce a series of Signature Events to mark the 400th anniversary of the Pilgrims arrival in Plymouth in 1620. Joining Governor Baker at the podium were Dusty Rhodes, Chair of the Plymouth Massachusetts 400 Commission; State Senator Vinny deMacedo, Plymouth & Barnstable District; State Representative Sarah Peake, 4th Barnstable District; Massachusetts Bureau of Indian Affairs Executive Director Jim Peters; Executive Director of Plymouth 400, Inc. Michele Pecoraro; President & General Manager of NBC Boston Mike St. Peters; and former Senate President of Massachusetts Therese Murray. Governor Baker called Massachusetts “a state of firsts, and what occurred in Plymouth in 1620 is a ‘first’ of ‘firsts.’ From Provincetown to Plymouth and beyond, many events are planned for 2020.” Here is a schedule of the Signature Events announced. Dusty Rhodes said, “The cultural contributions and American traditions that began with the interaction of the Wampanoag and English peoples have significantly shaped the building of America and continue to provide lessons for our future. Further, the inclusion of the Native American perspective is one of the truly unique aspects of this commemoration as, historically, this perspective has been mishandled and misrepresented.” Michele Pecoraro said, “The same cornerstones that defined this moment in history are also defined by the themes of this commemoration: exploration, innovation, self-governance, religious expression, immigration and thanksgiving. Each of Plymouth 400’s commemorative events and programs were specifically designed to highlight these themes.” Cape Cod is also part of the commemoration, since the Pilgrims initially landed off the coast of Provincetown prior to journeying up the coast to Plymouth in 1620. Established in 2011, Plymouth 400, Inc. is a non-profit organization has been working alongside the 35-member State Commission since January 2016. Together they are the architects of what is shaping up to be an epic commemoration of the voyage of the Mayflower and the founding of Plymouth Colony in 1620, a story that significantly shaped the building of America. Read more about Plymouth 400 here. For visitor information, go to MassVacation.com.
August Moon Festivals Celebrate Chinese Community in Massachusetts
by Lia Jackson The August Moon Festival, also known as the Mid-Autumn Festival, is the second largest festival in China. It began back in 771 BCE and is held in the middle of autumn, according to the Chinese Lunar Calendar, as a way to celebrate the harvest on a night of the full moon. Mooncakes are a popular and traditional food item at the Festival, which are served and eaten during the celebration to symbolize family unity. Massachusetts is fortunate to celebrate two August Moon Festivals, in Boston and Quincy. Visitors and local residents alike are welcome at each. Now in its 49th year, Boston’s Chinatown August Moon Festival (August 12) is a long day event (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.) that is free and open to the public. Located in Boston’s Chinatown neighborhood at Beach Street and Harrison Avenue, the event s organized by the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association of New England (CCBA), a group that promotes Chinese culture and traditions year round in the region. The Festival is filled with cultural performances as well as Chinese calligraphy, arts and crafts, along with various vendors of Chinese food and merchandise. The Festival also highlights what the CCBA and Chinatown has to offer the general public about the Chinese-American community. This year, Quincy is celebrating its 31st Annual Quincy August Moon Festival (August 19). Boston Magazine named it Boston’s Best Street Festival in 2018, and describes it like this: “Warm breezes, vibrant dragons and lions, and fresh-baked mooncakes filled with lotus-seed paste for the taking: This is the August Moon Festival, an always-boisterous street party commemorating the end of the harvest season. Chock full of cultural performances, it’s an action-packed day with arguably the best street food of any festival around.” The festival is organized by the Quincy Asian Resources, Inc., a non-profit organization whose mission is to foster and improve the lives of Asian Americans and their families to benefit Quincy and its neighboring communities. The festival is held on Coddington Street, Quincy Center and runs from noon to 5 p.m. Activities include live music, food, a petting zoo, cultural performances and games. Enjoy these August Moon festivals in Massachusetts. For visitor information, go to MassVacation.com. Lia Jackson is a recent graduate of Fitchburg State University and an intern at the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism in summer 2018.
Massport & Korean Air Announce Direct Service Between Seoul and Boston in 2019
Massport and Korean Air announced a new nonstop service, set to launch in spring 2019 between Seoul, South Korea and Boston, Massachusetts. It marks the 5th nonstop destination to Asia from Boston Logan International Airport. Other Asian destinations include Tokyo, Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai. Korean Air will operate five days a week on a Boeing 787-900 Dreamliner, carrying nearly 270 passengers, including six First Class sleeper suites, 18 Prestige business class sleeper suites, and 245 seats in economy class. Service is expected to begin between Logan (BOS) and Seoul Incheon International Airport (ICN) next spring. Seoul Incheon has been named one of the best airports in the world numerous times since 2000, most recently ranked 2nd by Skytrax. As the capital of South Korea, Seoul is one of the most populated cities in the world with more than 10 million residents. More than 24,000 individuals of Korean descent live in Massachusetts, including nearly 5,000 in Boston. Governor Charlie Baker said that his Administration “is committed to supporting access to economic development and growth across the Commonwealth. This new nonstop flight to Seoul will continue to strengthen Massachusetts’ international community and promote additional opportunities for residents, employers and visitors.” South Korea’s economy is ranked the 11th largest in the world and 4th largest in Asia. The country is also home to the headquarters of 15 Fortune 500 companies such as Samsung, LG Electronics, Hyundai and Kia, representing two of South Korea’s important exports: technology and automobiles. Korean Air’s Managing Vice President John Jackson said that Boston, “with its numerous universities and colleges, is a growing New England hub attracting companies in fast-growing industries like IT, bio-technology, healthcare, finance and pharmaceuticals.” In 2016, 66,500 South Koreans came to Massachusetts, spending $115 and generating $7 in state and local taxes, according to the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism. Massport CEO Thomas P. Glynn said, “Connecting New England with the global economy is a key part of Massport’s mission. Offering nonstop service to South Korea, one of the world’s largest economies, has been a priority and we are happy that it has come to fruition. We welcome Korean Air to Logan and look forward to connecting not only our economies, but students, families and tourists as well.” Other business and tourism industry leaders welcomed the news. Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau President and CEO Pat Moscaritolo called the announcement “terrific news for Boston’s visitor industry. South Korea is a top ten overseas source market for Boston, sending nearly 70,000 annual visitors to our city, and Korean Air directly services dozens of cities across China and Japan, which means Seoul is poised to become a major feeder city for Boston.” Boston’s Chief of Economic Development John F. Barros said, “As the City of Boston becomes an increasingly large presence in the global economy, international connections and partners are vital to our success. Commitments like these continue to bolster Boston’s tourism and business communities.” Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce President and CEO James Rooney said, “Connecting Boston with more international destinations increases opportunities for our talented workforce and helps make the Commonwealth more attractive for a variety of industries. Mass Competitive Partnership President and CEO Dan O’Connell said, “Nonstop air service is key to making Massachusetts competitive in the world marketplace. Connecting the Commonwealth with major international economies has great benefits.” Sustaining Massachusetts’ competitive edge in international travel is critical to the state’s highly travel-dependent and diversified economy; spread across sectors such as biotechnology, healthcare, education, and medical scientific research. Massport has worked to increase the number of options for international nonstop flights that help make Boston more attractive to foreign companies looking at U.S. facilities in the Commonwealth. International passengers fly through Logan’s newly renovated Terminal E. The Terminal E Renovation and Enhancements project, completed in 2016, improved the customer experience throughout the terminal. The project added 95,000 square feet of space and renovated three existing gates to accommodate larger aircraft. The project was designed to make Terminal E a true international gateway to Massachusetts and New England.
Governor Baker Signs Fiscal Year 2019 Budget
Today, Governor Charlie Baker signed the Fiscal Year 2019 (FY19) budget into law. The $41.232 billion plan reinforces the Baker-Polito Administration’s commitment to structurally balancing the state budget, while investing $4.91 billion towards K-12 education, providing over $200 million to combat the opioid and heroin epidemic, increasing funding to build stronger communities and supporting the state’s workforce from job growth to public transit. The FY19 budget anticipates a sizeable deposit in the Stabilization Fund, resulting in a net increase of $368 million for this fiscal year and a total balance of $2.15 billion by the end of FY19—which is nearly double the balance since the Baker-Polito Administration took office in 2015 and the highest amount in more than a decade. The budget reflects the Administration’s commitment to reducing the reliance on one-time sources of revenue, down from nearly $1.2 billion in Fiscal Year 2015 to $95 million in FY19, a decrease of 92%. Consistent with the administration’s previous budgets, this plan does not raise taxes or fees. The FY19 budget represents a 3.2% increase in spending over estimated spending in Fiscal Year 2018 (FY18). The total $41.232 billion in spending excludes the Medical Assistance Trust Fund transfer. Governor Baker said, “Since taking office, our Administration has worked to reduce an inherited budget deficit, build our reserves by over $1 billion and make targeted investments in education, the opioid epidemic and our cities and towns—all without raising taxes. We are pleased to sign a balanced budget that manages taxpayer dollars in a fiscally responsible way, while providing a tax break for working families and support for critical services for every resident. Lt. Governor Karyn Polito and I appreciate our ongoing partnership with the Legislature to collaborate and compromise on this important blueprint for the upcoming fiscal year.” The Commonwealth’s investment in Chapter 70 education aid to local schools will reach an all-time high of $4.91 billion, an increase of $160.6 million over FY18 and $507 million since the Administration took office. The budget also includes an increase in the state Earned Income Tax Credit from 23% to 30% of the federal tax credit, and builds on an earlier increase from 15% to 23% signed by the Governor in 2015. The tax credit increase, which was included in the Governor’s FY19 budget proposal, will provide additional tax relief for 450,000 filers, allowing working families in Massachusetts to retain more of their earnings. Next year an income-eligible family with three qualifying dependent children will receive a tax credit of nearly $2,000, or $458 more than at the current rate. The budget also increases the dairy farm tax credit. The FY19 plan continues the Administration’s support of local communities with a $37.2 million increase in unrestricted local aid, to $1.1 billion, an increase of $153.2 million since taking office. The budget includes $5.3 million for the Community Compact Cabinet program, and FY19 funding will reach $6.8 million total, pending approval by the Legislature of $1.5 million in additional funds. Chaired by Lt. Governor Polito, the Community Compact promotes municipal best practices and supports efficiency and regionalization grants for cities and towns. As of May 2018, all 351 cities and towns in the Commonwealth have signed compacts with the Commonwealth. Lt. Governor Polito said, “Our Administration has made it a priority to be a reliable partner for cities and towns across the Commonwealth, and this budget reaffirms that commitment. This plan will make significant investments in education and local aid, as well as grant programs to support local economic development and public safety initiatives.” The FY19 budget continues the Administration’s focus on addressing opioid addiction and substance misuse, funding $203 million across multiple agencies (not including MassHealth) for treatment and services for individuals with substance use disorder, an approximately 70% increase since 2015. The budget will continue support for women’s addiction treatment services at Taunton State Hospital and programs at the Massachusetts Alcohol and Substance Abuse Center in Plymouth. The budget makes a major investment in behavioral health with a $109 million increase in funding for the Department of Mental Health, which includes $83.8 million for Adult Clinical Care Services to improve community-based services for adults with serious mental illness. The Department of Children and Families will receive $1 billion in funding, an increase of $34.2 million over FY18. Since 2015, funding for DCF has increased by $180.2 million, which has supported the hiring of more than 600 new employees to address the critical infrastructure needed to run the agency. The budget makes important progress toward funding accounts that traditionally have been underfunded and typically require significant supplemental appropriations, including snow and ice removal, legal services for the poor, and emergency shelter for the homeless. Secretary of Administration and Finance Michael J. Heffernan said, “Working with our partners in the House and Senate we make great progress in this budget toward funding the cost of services that we know the Commonwealth will incur, to maintain structural balance, and to build our reserves, all of which are important to responsible budgeting. This budget is a continuation of our efforts to plan and spend taxpayer resources more efficiently and maximize our investments.” The Massachusetts Department of Transportation receives $582.5 million in funding, including the MBTA and Regional Transit Authorities. The MBTA will receive $127 million in state support in FY19 to build on the Administration’s commitment to improve financial sustainability at the T, in addition to the annual $1 billion sales tax transfer. As part of the budget-signing, Governor Baker vetoed $49 million in gross spending, including 297 earmarks. Of 110 outside sections, the Governor signed 91, and returned 19 to the Legislature with proposed amendments. In addition to signing the budget today, Governor Baker urged the Legislature to act on a supplemental budget proposal filed on July 13 that invests $150 million for new programs to support education and school safety, including $40 million to fund more school counselors, social workers and psychologists, $30 million for targeted intervention and turnaround efforts in school districts with high concentrations of low-income students and $15 million to fund community college scholarships to cover unmet tuition costs for students with financial need. The supplemental budget also recommends an additional $50 million to fund local road and bridge projects. Link to FY19 Budget
Baker-Polito Administration, MassDevelopment Announce Over $2 Million for Collaborative Workspaces
The Baker-Polito Administration and MassDevelopment announced $2,155,000 in funding for the third round of Collaborative Workspace Program grants, a MassDevelopment program that accelerates business formation, job creation, and entrepreneurial activity in communities by supporting infrastructure that fuels locally-based innovation. Eligible organizations may apply for either seed grants to plan and study the feasibility of new collaborative workspaces, or fit-out grants to develop and expand existing workspaces. Through its first two rounds of grants, the Collaborative Workspace Program provided $3 million in funding to more than 50 organizations for the planning, development, and build-out of different types of collaborative workspaces. This new round includes $1.5 million from the Commonwealth’s capital budget and $655,000 from the Barr Foundation, the second installment of a three-year $1,965,000 grant to the program to expand support for arts-related collaborative workspaces in the Commonwealth. “Through our 2016 Economic Development Legislation, our administration implemented the Collaborative Workspace Program to enable investments in community-based innovation infrastructure to provide entrepreneurs across Massachusetts with the resources to turn ideas into businesses,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash. “Throughout the Commonwealth, participating communities are making progress in creating welcoming and productive spaces. We look forward to investing further in our state-wide innovation ecosystem.” “Funding awarded through the Collaborative Workspace Program has helped advance community-based innovation and entrepreneurship in cities and towns across the Commonwealth,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Lauren Liss. “Thanks to continued support from the Baker-Polito Administration and the Barr Foundation, MassDevelopment is thrilled to kick off a third round of grants that will provide even more organizations with the resources they need to create or enhance collaborative workspaces in their community.” MassDevelopment’s continued partnership with the Barr Foundation broadens the reach of the Collaborative Workspace Program to include the creative sector, a critical source of innovation and positive community change. “Collaborative workspaces are hubs of creativity for entrepreneurs, artists, and other creatives to find new tools, collaborators, and resources. The ideas, projects, and enterprises that emerge have enormous potential to foster greater vibrancy, innovation, and economic activity in neighborhoods, and keep Massachusetts at the forefront of innovation,” said San San Wong, Arts & Creativity Program Director at the Barr Foundation. Proposals are due in electronic format via email at email@example.com by 5 p.m. on Friday, July 20, 2018. Funding decisions are expected to be announced at the end of September. MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2017, MassDevelopment financed or managed 377 projects generating investment of more than $4.3 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are projected to create about 9,488 jobs and build or rehabilitate 1,863 residential units.
Mass Preservation Awards include Tourism Sites
As part of Preservation Month in the Bay State, the Massachusetts Historical Commission held a public ceremony on May 16 at the Massachusetts Archives Building, recognizing 10 worthy projects and individuals throughout Massachusetts. Several tourism sites were included, such as the Paul Revere House in Boston, The Mass MoCA in North Adams, and the Eustis Estate and Museum in Milton. The project awardees included the Chinatown Atlas in Boston; Paul Revere House Education and Visitor Center in Boston’s North End; Essex Town Hall and T.O.H.P. Burnham Library in Essex; Fitchburg Yarn Works in Fitchburg; the Eustis Estate & Museum in Milton; MASS MoCA Building #6 in North Adams; Joseph Simes House in Plymouth; Virginia Adams, Reading Historical Commission; Fire Alarm and Telegraph Building in Worcester. Individual awards also went to Minxie and James Fannin, Fannin–Lehner Preservation Consultants, in Concord, and Virginia Adams, local preservationist in Reading. Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin, chair of the Massachusetts Historical Commission, spoke at the assembly and praised the preservation community for its work. He said Preservation Month “provides an opportunity to discover and appreciate the Commonwealth’s historic resources and to recognize that historic preservation benefits all of us, enhancing all our lives.” 2018 marks the 40th anniversary of the Massachusetts Historical Commission’s Preservation Awards Program. Observed nationally since 1973, Preservation Month is an opportunity for organizations large and small to promote preservation, historic places, and community pride through celebrations and other events. Communities and organizations around Massachusetts are sponsoring numerous preservation activities during the month of May that celebrate the State House, Room 337, Boston, Massachusetts 02133 Commonwealth’s rich and diverse heritage. More information is available from the Massachusetts Historical Commission and local historical commissions. Find additional information about the Massachusetts Historical Commission here.
Celebrate Cape Verdeans in Massachusetts
By Francisco Fernandes Tavares Massachusetts is proud of its diverse population of residents representing dozens of ethnic communities and more than 140 languages from around the world. One of the most prominent is the Cape Verdean community, concentrated in Boston and nearby cities and towns like Quincy, Randolph, Somerville and Cambridge; and also South of Boston in Brockton, Taunton, Fall River, New Bedford and Cape Cod. The community is represented by the Cabo Verde Consulate located at 300 Congress Street in Quincy. While the official language of Cape Verde is Portuguese, Cape Verdeans also speak a unique Creole dialect as well. Portuguese is the third most commonly spoken language in Massachusetts, representing people from Brazil, Cape Verde, Portugal, Azores and Madeira. Here are a few suggestions on how to discover Cape Verdean culture and heritage in Massachusetts. GREATER BOSTON Boston has over 40,000 Cape Verdean residents, mostly concentrated in Dorchester, Mattapan and Roxbury neighborhoods. Recognizing these strong ties, the City of Boston signed a Sister City Agreement with Praia, Cape Verde in 2015 to foster economic, social and cultural exchange between these two cities. The Cape Verdean Independence Festival on July 4th at Boston City Hall Plaza is a great way to experience Cape Verdean culture up close. Attendees can enjoy live music, arts, food, children’s activities and the raising of the Cape Verdean flag. For those looking to enjoy authentic Cape Verdean cuisine, look no further than Cesaria, a popular Cape Verdean restaurant located at 266 Bowdoin Street in Dorchester. Cesaria offers popular authentic Cape Verdean dishes, including Catchup, a slow simmered stew made of hominy, pork, beans, carrots and collard greens. NEW BEDFORD New Bedford is proud of its Cape Verdean heritage, culture and history, which date back to the 1790s, when New Bedford whaling ships stopped in Cape Verde for supplies. The Cape Verdean Maritime Exhibits, opened in 2011 at the New Bedford Whaling Museum, reflects this illustrious history. New Bedford is also the official home for the Schooner Ernestina, which was aligned with Cape Verde through much of the 20th century. The ship was built in 1894 and brought many Cape Verdean immigrants to the U.S. In 1982, it was returned to Massachusetts, presented as a gift from the Cape Verdean people. Ernestina is currently being refurbished and will serve as an educational vessel and tourist attraction when it returns to port. New Bedford Director of Tourism & Marketing Dagny Ashley describes New Bedford’s Cape Verdean community as “proud, passionate and inspiring to the community, myself and the city. They work hard to share and preserve the stories of Cape Verde’s culture and people, inspiring future generations while celebrating the Cape Verdean past and present connections to New Bedford and beyond.” The annual Cape Verdean Recognition Parade, taking place on July 7th, 2018, celebrates Cape Verdean independence and the heritage of New Bedford. Participants can enjoy music, live bands, floats, dancers and more. Ashley calls Cape Verdeans “part of New Bedford’s fabric. Its history is woven and embedded in the city, dating back to the 1800’s. Along with many other groups, the Cape Verdean community helps make the City of New Bedford rich in history, culture and traditions.” BROCKTON Brockton has the third largest Cape Verdean population in Massachusetts, and is the only city to have an official Cape Verdean Heritage Day, organized by the Cape Verde Association of Brockton. The centerpiece of this year’s 24th Annual CV DAY Festival is on Sunday July 29, from 2 – 8 p.m. in Brockton. Also, the Association hosts an annual Gala, taking place on August 21 at Santana Restaurant and Hall in Brockton. CAPE COD In Hyannis, visit the Zion Union Heritage Museum, which celebrates the African-American, Cape Verdean and Wampanoag people of Cape Cod, as well as people who arrived here more recently from Brazil and the Caribbean. Coming up on June 2 at the Museum is “Sing Sistah Sing!” a tribute to female singers from these communities that have contributed to blues, jazz, gospel and opera. Also on Cape Cod, check out the Cape Verdean Club of Falmouth, the oldest of its kind in the United States. The Club holds an annual Cape Verdean Festival in September. Massachusetts is home to many vibrant ethnic communities, making the state a promising destination to witness and experience multiple cultures and traditions. You can find out about other multicultural communities by visiting MassVacation.com. *** Francisco ‘Cisco’ Tavares is an intern at Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism. He attends Emmanuel College, Boston where he is working on his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business, with a Concentration in Marketing. Cisco is Treasurer of the Cape Verdean Student Association at Emmanuel.
MassEcon Welcomes 17 new Companies to MA
Last week, Governor Charlie Baker joined MassEcon officials and 125 business, academic and political leaders to welcome seventeen companies new to Massachusetts at the 10th Annual Corporate Welcome Reception annual Corporate Welcome Reception, held at Sanofi Genzyme’s headquarters in Cambridge. The annual gathering is designed to promote Massachusetts as an outstanding place to locate, start or expand a business. Of the 17 new companies setting up in Massachusetts, two are global headquarters, two are United States headquarters and one is a North American headquarter. Governor Baker said, “Massachusetts continues to succeed in attracting new jobs, development and investment from around the world and we are excited for the role these new companies will play in our economy and communities in the years to come. There’s no better state in which to write the next chapter in whatever your story is going to be.” MassEcon Executive Director Susan Houston said, “Over the past 10 years, we’ve welcomed nearly 150 new companies to Massachusetts, and the 17 we are recognizing today are terrific additions to the Commonwealth’s economic landscape. We look forward to supporting their growth.” Houston highlighted two made-in-Massachusetts companies: Sanofi Genzyme, formed in 1981 and today the largest biopharma company in the Commonwealth with 5,000 employees; and Kronos, founded in 1977 by an MIT alumnus, and today is a technology leader in cloud-based human relations solutions, with 1,500 employees in its Lowell headquarters and 5,300 employees worldwide. Sanofi Genzyme Executive Vice President Bill Sibold said, “We believe Massachusetts is the best place to start, grow, and develop a company.” Governor Baker was introduced by MassEcon Chairman and Vice President for Academic and Corporate Engagement at Worcester Polytechnic Institute Stephen Flavin, noted that these 17 companies collectively absorbed 153,000 square feet of commercial space across the state. Here is the list of 17 new companies, including where they came from and where they located to in Massachusetts since January 1, 2017. • Alexion, Connecticut→ Boston • Asics Creation Studios, California → Boston • Avianca Airlines, Colombia → Boston • CELLINK, Sweden → Cambridge • CILcare, France → Cambridge & Lexington • Fresenius Kabi Compounding, Germany → Canton • Histo-Scientific Research Laboratories, Virginia → Worcester • iboss, California → Boston • IndusPAD, California → Lawrence/Methuen • Level, Spain → Boston • LexaGene, Canada → Beverly • The Muck Boot Company, Rhode Island → Westwood • Mustang Bio, New York → Waltham & Worcester • PainQX, New York → Boston • Smartsheet, Washington → Boston • StemTek Therapeutics, Spain → Cambridge • Tufin, Israel → Boston ABOUT MASSECON MassEcon is a private non-profit entity that serves as the state’s private sector partner in promoting Massachusetts as the premier choice for business growth. Launched in 1993 by the Governor’s Council for Growth and Technology, MassEcon promotes Massachusetts by providing information services to companies seeking to expand or relocate to the state. MassEcon’s services include the Site Finder Service, the Research & Information Service, and the Massachusetts Ambassadors program. MassEcon works to ensure that business stays, grows, and thrives in the Commonwealth. More information can be found at www.massecon.com.
Massachusetts Celebrates National Library Week
Did you know that Massachusetts can proudly claim the nation’s first membership library and the nation’s first public library? And that we have a presidential library, some of the world’s best university libraries, two federal archives, and the world’s largest repository of books for the blind and deaf. Those facts are worth mentioning we celebrate National Library Week, an annual acknowledgement of the important role libraries play in our society, and the value Massachusetts places on education, learning and the free exchange of ideas. The Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners is the state agency that supports, improves and promotes library services throughout the state. Massachusetts has over 370 public libraries and 1,400 academic and specialized libraries throughout the Commonwealth. Here are just a few of the highlights: The Boston Athenaeum, at 8 ½ Beacon Street near the Massachusetts State House, was created in 1807 as the first membership library in the American colonies. The Athenaeum quickly became a centerpiece for the Bay Colony’s cultural, educational, artistic and publishing pursuits. Today it remains a vibrant, important center for scholars, bibliophiles and community groups. The Boston Public Library opened its doors in 1848, thanks to legislation created and enacted by the Great and General Court of Massachusetts. It was the first large public library in the United States, and was initially referred to as the people’s palace, since it was open to everyone. The Samuel P. Hayes Research Library & Perkins Archives is regarded as the world’s largest collection of non-medical books about blindness and deafness. The library was founded in 1880, as part of Boston’s Perkins School for the Blind. The State Library of Massachusetts, located at the State House, has a vast collection of important government documents dating back to the founding of the nation. It also has official documents pertaining to Massachusetts’ participation in various wars, and all of the regulations and laws passed by the Massachusetts Legislature in its history. The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum at Columbia Point in Dorchester is a federal repository of the papers and holdings of President Kennedy and his administration. The JFK is a treasure trove of information about the state’s native son, and also materials on mid-20th century politics in America. The National Archives hold the permanent archival records of the federal government. Massachusetts is fortunate to have two of the thirteen regional facilities located around the country, in Waltham and Pittsfield. The Massachusetts Health Sciences Library Network is a consortium of libraries that include medical research centers and hospitals, publishing companies and college libraries with significant collections in health sciences. You can find more about the state’s libraries by visiting the Massachusetts Library System, Massachusetts Library Association, You can search for libraries by topics or by town here.
PAX East 2018 Highlights Massachusetts Innovation and Creativity
The 2018 PaxEast show at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center (BCEC) did not disappoint. Hundreds of new products were on display. Experts discussed the latest industry trends. Educational programs shared their curriculum and courses while talking to passers-by about career opportunities in the gaming industry. The enthusiastic fan base of over 100,000 people crowded the floor, testing new games, talking shop and enjoying the spectacle of digital screens, costumed characters and interactive opportunities. Since coming to Boston in 2010, PaxEast has become one of the most anticipated shows in the city’s extensive convention schedule, breaking attendance records year after year. Tickets went on sale in November 2017 and sold out within days. Mass Convention Center Authority (MCCA) Executive Director David Gibbons called PAX East “one of the largest events we host and our IT, public safety, and transportation teams are all put to the test managing the tens of thousands of attendees who descend on the South Boston Waterfront over four days. It is a challenge we welcome because PAX is a great example of an event that delivers significant economic impact not only to the local restaurants and hotels, but also the numerous Massachusetts based gaming companies that get direct access to their best customers from around the world.” Massachusetts has a stake in the $67 billion gaming industry, which helps to fuel the state’s creative economy. This year, 40+ Massachusetts companies had exhibit space, plus other small start-ups scattered around the floor in the Indie Mega booth and other places. Massachusetts colleges had a strong showing at this year’s PAX East. Worchester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) showed student-created games at the conference, soliciting feedback to help improve the final products. Other colleges exhibiting included Becker College, Elms College, Fitchburg State University, Mount Ida College, New England Institute of Technology and Worchester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). Massachusetts Digital Games Institute (MassDiGI) Executive Director Timothy Loew, says “With studios and companies starting up all the time, the Massachusetts video game industry continues to create great experiences for players of all kinds. And, with the talent coming out of nationally-recognized game development academic programs like those at Becker College, Hampshire College, MIT, Northeastern University and WPI, it’s no surprise.” “In addition to the exciting Boston-area game maker groups such as Boston Indies, Boston FIG Fest or Women in Games Boston, support for games across the state now includes Another Castle, a collaborative workspace for game developers opened in Greenfield, MA and the MassDiGI New Ventures Center accelerator for game start-ups in Worcester, MA.” Here is a schedule of upcoming conventions at Massachusetts Convention Center Authority.
Baker-Polito Administration Files Act Enhancing Opportunities for All
The Baker-Polito Administration released a new economic development framework and legislation, An Act Enhancing Opportunities for All, to build on the administration’s efforts to promote economic vitality in our communities and spur economic growth across the state. This bill serves as the next step forward to bolster Massachusetts’ success, building on the achievements and framework created by Governor Baker’s first economic development bill that was passed by the Legislature in July 2016. Governor Charlie Baker said the bill “seeks to grow the economy for all regions of the Commonwealth by providing support for small businesses, continuing the successful MassWorks program for Massachusetts’ downtowns and main streets and purchasing more equipment to expand and improve workforce skills training. We look forward to working with the Legislature to create a permanent sales tax holiday, to develop a stronger pipeline of trained employees in manufacturing and technology fields and incentivizing business through tax credits.” This legislation provides over $610 million in capital authorizations, including $300 million in capital reauthorization for the MassWorks program. Additional capital authorizations include: • $100 million for a new regional development program to partner with communities on projects with the potential to create large numbers of jobs and make a significant regional impact • $75 million in skills capital grants to fund equipment to expand and improve career technical education programs and programs focused on training and retraining adults in high-demand skills in manufacturing, information technology, and other high growth sectors • $50 million to partner with coastal communities to address saltwater dredging needs • $50 million to build on the successes of the Seaport Economic Council in stimulating economic development, creating jobs in the maritime economy sector and protecting coastal assets that are vital to achieving these aims • $25 million to fund our Massachusetts Manufacturing Innovation Initiative (M2I2) and provide matching grants to institutions of higher education across the Commonwealth to collaborate with private industry around emerging manufacturing technologies • $12.5 million to provide matching grants to the federal Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs for accepted Massachusetts businesses that are seeking to commercialize their innovations • $1.25 million to enable community development financial institutions to leverage significant federal funding to support lending for small businesses in need of capital development financial institutions to leverage significant federal funding to support lending for small businesses in need of capital Lieutenant Governor Polito said the proposal helps the Commonwealth “to better partner with cities and towns. Greater flexibility for communities, housing boards and state agencies will maximize potential economic opportunities, and funding in this legislation will support dredging for our coastal communities and continued support through the Seaport Economic Council for the maritime economy.” Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash called the initiative “an extension of our partnership with many stakeholders, most notably legislators and municipal officials. These leaders have joined our efforts to support broad economic development, from public housing investment and downtown revitalization, to cutting edge research & development that leads to the commercialization of the innovations that result, to building upon our incredibly talented workforce—one of the best in the country.” Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta the legislation “will help close skills gaps and ensure that the next generation of workers in the Commonwealth has the training and resources they need to access next generation jobs. By focusing on investing in high demand job categories, employers across Massachusetts will continue to benefit from a pool of highly trained workers to meet their growth needs.” Secretary of Education James Peyser said, “The investments in technology and equipment made through the Skills Capital Grants are already having an impact on our students’ future successes in college and careers, and we are very happy to be able to make these additional investments. The grants enabled schools to support an additional 7,000 students to learn skills in high-demand, growing industries in the Commonwealth.” Administration and Finance Secretary Michael J. Heffernan said, “By increasing authorizations for successful programs like MassWorks and Skills Capital Grants, this legislation will ensure we can continue to build on the progress the administration has made to unlock economic potential for our communities and in our workforce. A permanent sales tax holiday will also foster economic growth for our local businesses in each community across the Commonwealth.”
Education First Promotes Global Learning
Architectural Rendering of Education First’s New Building in Cambridge The term Global Citizen describes a person increasingly comfortable building a strong identification with the world as a whole. As national borders open to an increasingly globalized society, ease in travel, global trade and advances in technology have allowed for the expansion of cultural, value-based and linguistic exchanges. A company on the frontier of these exchanges is EF Education First, the world’s largest educational organization. Located in Northpoint, Cambridge, EF’s North American headquarters is a 300,000 square foot architectural masterpiece with panoramic views of the Boston skyline. It recently broke ground for a third building at Northpoint that will create 300 new jobs and add public parks to the area. Education First was founded more than 50 years ago by Swedish scholar, Bertil Hult, who spent time in England with a mission to learn the English language. From his British experience, Hult deemed experiential learning as the most effective method for learning a language. Over the half century, the vision for experiential learning continued to grow as EF developed its mission to promote language, education, travel and cultural exchange on a global scale. Today the company operates in 116 countries, has 539 office and schools and employs 46,500 employees across all continents. EF opens up the world to a greater number of people from multiple backgrounds through its strong repertoire of products. Each product offers adventurers the ability to explore diverse cultures, embark on unforgettable journeys and study at one of EF’s academies or at the award-winning Hult International Business School. On October 2, 2017, Governor Charlie Baker attended the groundbreaking of EF’s third new building, praising the company for its commitment to learning. “There is unity in what you do. You bring cultures together. You bring people who don’t know each other together. You bring people from different walks of life together. You do exactly in this day and age which we need most of all – which is people who know how to find common ground and help people build on it,” Governor Baker said. “Today’s groundbreaking is an important moment for EF that also highlights how public-private partnerships can lead to economic development, jobs and the creation of beautiful public spaces that benefit our staff and students as well as the residents of Cambridge and Boston,” said EF’s North American CEO Dr. Edward Hult. Why Massachusetts The inclusive and experiential nature of the company found its home in Cambridge, a neighborhood blooming with diversity, creativity and world-class education. Within the company’s open and communal office space, EF employees display a commitment to innovation and civic engagement that mirrors the City of Cambridge ethos. Recently, the company opened a public wellness space close to its property in East Cambridge. Vice President of EF Properties, Shawna Marino, tells Boston Magazine, “Living a healthy lifestyle is one of our strong focuses here at EF. We are just so thrilled to share this part of our culture with the community.” According to EF, the new 300,000-square-foot, 12-story building will be designed to a LEED Gold standard and is scheduled to open in late spring 2019. The ground floor will be completely dedicated to public space with a mix of uses throughout the upper floors, including new student housing for the independent, nonprofit Hult International Business School, general office and administrative space, and above-grade parking. The ground floor will include a public fitness center with a rock climbing wall, a small café, public restrooms, and hundreds of new public bike parking spaces. EF’s communal company culture also resonates beyond its office block. EF is an active agent in the Greater Boston community as employees regularly donate their time in community service projects. Such projects include Charles River clean-up on Earth Day and the EF Cares volunteering club that works with EF’s on-site chef to cook meals for local families. EF’s Annual Holiday drive collects donations for Greater Boston Food Bank, Big Brother Big Sister Association of Greater Boston and Cultural Care Kids First Foundation. Education First fosters a commitment to global experiential education and service that is unparalleled. In its quest for knowledge, education, innovation and excellence, EF emulates the true spirit of Massachusetts.
3rd Annual HUBweek Underway in Boston through October 15
The 3rd annual HUBweek, a festival that celebrates innovation at the intersection of arts, science and technology, is underway in Boston and Cambridge. Over 175 events are taking place that explore cutting-edge ideas, inventions, and prospects for the future. Here is a master list of events. HUBweek was founded by The Boston Globe, Harvard University, MIT and Mass General Hospital. Many of the events are free, and some require a small fee. Here is the registration page. For more about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Massachusetts Archaeology Month October 2017
October is Archaeology Month in Massachusetts, with a month-long schedule of over 60 exhibits, lectures, walks and events that promote awareness of the Commonwealth’s rich archaeological past. These events are taking place in 30 + cities and towns across the state and range from children’s programs to scholarly discussions of Massachusetts’ past. Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin says, “Many events highlight local Native American, Colonial, and Industrial history, while others explore the archaeological past in other countries. We have numerous events focusing on what can be learned from archaeology and how that knowledge can be applied.” Among the events: Ancient Adaptations by Native Americans in Boston Harbor Digging at the Emily Dickinson Museum in Amherst Divine Creatures: Animal Mummies in Ancient Egypt at the Harvard Museums in Cambridge Plymouth Colony during King Phillip’s War at Duxbury Public Library Greek Buddhist and Christian art and Archaeology at the Springfield Museums See full schedule here. This year’s Archaeology Month poster features stone artifacts recovered from excavations at a South Shore site. Delving into the Past is the 2017 theme for Massachusetts Archaeology Month, according to State Archaeologist Brona Simon. “The cover of this calendar features a number of chipped stone tools that were crafted by Native Americans about 3,500 to 3,800 years ago,” Simon says. Here are Archaeology Resources for Teachers. For details about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Massachusetts Tourism Office Creates Thoreau Trail in Concord
Photo Courtesy of RhythmQuietude In honor of Henry David Thoreau’s 200th birthday in 2017, the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism (MOTT) has created a special itinerary of must-see literary attractions and inspirational places throughout historic Concord. Thoreau’s Concord: A Transcendentalist Journey in Massachusetts, charts the places where Thoreau was born, raised and inspired to create some of America’s most compelling literature, and includes the homes and gathering spots of famous Concord writers including the Alcott family, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Nathaniel Hawthorne. Each of the 14 stops along the Trail has been classified as a space for outdoor adventure, a historic home, or farm-to-table dining experience. “This itinerary honoring Concord’s most famous authors is a nod to Massachusetts’ rich literary roots,” says Francois-Laurent Nivaud, executive director of Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism. “By creating meaningful interactions and immersive travel opportunities for visitors, this is a perfect example of how tourists and industry partners can engage with one another to celebrate our story.” Written in 1854, Henry David Thoreau’s Walden has influenced generations of readers while also creating a foundation for the conservation movement across the United States. The Massachusetts Department of Conservation & Recreation oversees the Walden Pond State Reservation, which includes a new Visitor Center and a replica of Thoreau’s cabin. Walden Pond is open year round. For visitor information about Concord and surrounding cities and towns, go to Greater Merrimack Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau. For details on visiting Massachusetts any time of year, go to MassVacation.com.
Tourism Office Issues MassJazz Guide Celebrating Jazz in Massachusetts
The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT) has released its 2017-2018 MassJazz Guide showcasing the Bay State’s vibrant year-round jazz scene of festivals, concerts, night clubs, jazz brunches, college courses and radio programs. Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito write in their welcome letter to MassJazz, “As America’s most original art form, jazz inspires us through its creativity, inclusion and global perspective. We you hope enjoy the music and that you are inspired by all that Massachusetts has to offer.” The free, 40-page MassJazz Guide includes stories on celebrated jazz musicians such as bassist Esperanza Spalding and pianist Yoko Miwa, jazz singer and radio executive Amanda Carr of WICN-FM and the New England Jazz Hall of Fame in Worcester. Berklee College of Music’s new partnership with the Shanghai Conservatory in China is covered, along with the upcoming Beantown Jazz Festival and other festivals in Massachusetts this fall. Jazz promoters such as Fred Taylor, Berkshires Jazz, Woods Hole Jazz Series, Northampton Jazz Series, John Coltrane Memorial Concert and Mandorla Music are profiled, along with WGBH-FM’s award-winning jazz programs. The 2017-2018 issue features notable Boston jazz clubs such as Les Zygomates Wine Bar, Darryl’s Corner Kitchen + Bar and Slade’s Bar & Grill, while also listing jazz brunches throughout the state. The MassJazz Guide is available for free at visitor kiosks, college campuses, and venues where live jazz is performed. Read the digital 2017-2018 MassJazz Guide online, and find ongoing information on live jazz in Massachusetts at MassJazz.com and the Mass Jazz blog. For more information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com
Smithsonian Magazine Offers Free Guest Passes to 40 + Massachusetts Museums on September 23
Over 40 Massachusetts museums and cultural institutions across the Bay State are opening their doors for free this Saturday, September 23, 2017, as part of Smithsonian Magazine‘s annual Museum Day Live! According to the Smithsonian, “In the spirit of Smithsonian Museums, who offer free admission everyday, Museum Day Live! is an annual event in which participating museums across the country open their doors to anyone presenting a Museum Day Ticket…for free.” The Museum Day Live! website allows participants to register and download the tickets online. Here are FAQs for further information. In 2016, over 200,000 people downloaded tickets to museums across the US for the Museum Day Live! events, according to the organizers. In Massachusetts, museums are cultural anchors for local residents and schoolchildren in the state’s 351 cities and towns. Museums are also in the Top 10 of tourist activities in Massachusetts. Find out more about Massachusetts museums by visiting New England Museum Association or museum listings on massvacation.com.
Lafayette Trail Unveils Historic Treasures in Massachusetts & New England
he Consulate General of France in Boston has designed a Lafayette Trail that celebrates a unique slice of New England history – the 1824-1825 Farewell Tour of Marquis de Lafayette, the French hero of the American Revolutionary War. The Trail, available on a Mobile APP, is a great way for residents and visitors re-trace one of the significant tours of a foreign dignitary in 19th century New England history. French historian and geographer Julien Icher, who manages the Lafayette Trail Project, has been traveling throughout New England, researching and documenting each of Lafayette’s steps, focusing specifically on the major landmarks Lafayette visited, the local people he knew from his service during the Revolutionary War, and the various plaques and memorials to honor his visit. Also helping in the development of the Lafayette Trail: American Friends of Lafayette and the Massachusetts Lafayette Society. French heritage and culture is very evident in Massachusetts today. The French Cultural Centre in Boston’s Back Bay provides an authentic French cultural and social experience, hosting lectures, concerts, festivals and educational courses throughout the year. And in 2015, 98,000 French tourists visited Massachusetts, spending $300 million and contributing $12 million in state and local taxes, according to the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism. Here is MOTT’s French-language version website visitmass.fr. For information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
UMass Dining Repeats as Nation’s #1 Campus Food
(Photo Courtesy of UMass Amherst) By Matthew Stromski, MOTT Intern Students at UMass-Amherst are reaping the fruits of a great education, and they are also eating extremely well, according to the Princeton Review’s The Best 382 Colleges: 2018 Edition, which ranked UMass Dining the #1 Campus Food in the nation for the second consecutive year. After cracking the Princeton Review’s top ten in 2012, the dining program jumped to #3 in 2013 and 2014, reached the #2 ranking in 2015 and 2016 and eventually took the top spot in 2017 and 2018. News about the schools #1 ranking has traveled far beyond the Western Massachusetts campus. After the announcement, UMass chefs Robert Bankert and Anthony Jung appeared on NBC’s “Today Show,” which averaged 3.61 million viewers and had the highest morning show viewership among the 25-54 demographic in the month of July. UMass Amherst honored for Best Campus Food by The Princeton Re…In case you missed it, UMass Dining chefs Bob Bankert and Tony Jung presented their award-winning food on the Today Show yesterday as UMass Amherst was honored for Best Campus Food from The Princeton Review – College and Beyond for the second straight year. Go UMass and Go UMass Dining! Posted by UMass Amherst on Wednesday, August 2, 2017 No one is more overjoyed with the honor than the passionate, dedicated and hardworking UMass Dining crew of 782 full-time employees across campus, who are complimented by a staff of about 2,000 students. “We are so proud and honored,” said Ken Toong, Director of Auxiliary Enterprises at UMass, “We have built a strong student food culture of serving healthy, sustainable and delicious food, one meal at a time.” UMass Dining holds itself to the highest standards throughout the entire academic year, as opposed to some schools that roll out the dining hall red carpet only for special events. As Toong notes, “we do not want the food to be better on parent’s weekend.” Every year, UMass Dining takes pride in creating new recipes, asking parents of students for their own recipes to use in the dining commons. The school uses anywhere from 200-250 parent submitted recipes every year, and creates cook books of the best recipes that parents give them. Overall, UMass Dining goes through 3,000-4,000 different recipes every year. “The whole goal is to offer a variety of food that tastes good and is good for you,” Toong says. The success of UMass Dining is also a bonus for the local economy in Western Massachusetts, since the program uses locally sourced food to serve students. In the past year, UMass has used 45 vendors across Massachusetts to purchase $2.4 million in locally sourced food. The dining program looks to keep increasing that number, and hopes to become the national model for sourcing local food, purchasing chicken, lean protein turkey and fresh fish among other products. Czajkowski Farm in Hadley has been doing business with UMass Dining for the past 16 years. During the academic year, Czajkowski Farm makes five deliveries per week to campus, bringing food to all four dining halls. UMass chooses from 27-30 different items that the Farm can grow, while occasionally UMass makes special requests that the Farm grows specifically for the program. The partnership helps with jobs on the farm and keeps the money in the community, and saves on transportation costs by not having to ship the food in from other parts of the country. “I’m impressed,” Joe Czajkowski, an owner of Czajkowski Farm expressed, “They run an incredibly well run food service, probably the best we deal with, (and) they make the best food.” UMass Dining is a $69 million enterprise that serves between 45,000-55,000 meals per week, and anywhere from $5.5-6.0 million meals per year. In the 2016-17 academic year, the undergraduate population at UMass was 21,734 students, with over 88% on a UMass Dining meal plan. Of the 2,000 student employees, 72 are student supervisors/interns/managers who use their experience with UMass Dining towards a potential career in hospitality or retail dining. The students in the Hospitality & Tourism Management program at UMass, which is ranked #13 in the nation by The Best Schools, greatly benefits from working with the dining management at UMass. “We are coaching them”, Toong says proudly, “What students learn from us is some of the practical day-to-day management skills.” Is there a connection between the school’s dining accolades and student enrollment? In a survey conducted in fall 2016, UMass Dining found that 70% of students said that food was an important factor in their choice to attend UMass-Amherst. The dining commons on campus are open daily from 7:00 a.m. until Midnight, and some retail dining, such as food trucks, are open as late as 3:00 a.m. According to Toong, students on the unlimited meal plan eat 4.5 meals per day from UMass Dining Services. When Toong and Garett Distefano (Director of Residential Dining Services) speak with parents of new students, they often hear the parents express that the food at UMass-Amherst is what put the icing on the cake for their child to attend the University. Matthew Stromski is a student at UMass/Amherst and a summer intern at Mass Office of Travel & Tourism & the Mass Sports Marketing Office.
Baker-Polito Administration Launches 3rd Annual Summer Nights Initiative for City Youth
Photo: Governor Baker and Mayor Walsh celebrate Summer Nights Initiative at Roberts Park. This week Governor Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh kicked off the 3rd annual Summer Nights initiative to increase programming and extend the operational hours of select pools, parks and athletic complexes across the Commonwealth. Joining them at Roberts Park in Dorchester were Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Matthew Beaton, and Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Commissioner Leo Roy. Launched in 2015, the Summer Nights Initiative, organized by DCR, benefits youth within the cities of Boston, Chicopee, Everett, Fall River, Holyoke, Lawrence, Malden, Springfield, and Worcester during summer evenings. Governor Baker said the initiative “offers recreational programs and extended hours at our pools and parks to provide a safe and fun place for all. With over 450,000 acres of public land, including several parks within city neighborhoods throughout Massachusetts, our parks offer perfect locations for kids to get outside and explore nature, many of which are right in people’s backyards.” Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito called the initiative, “an important yearly program for our Administration over the last three years, impacting the lives of children and their families across the Commonwealth. By extending the hours of operations at highly visible and frequently utilized facilities, we are able to help promote a healthy, active lifestyle at an early age for our children.” Mayor Walsh noted that in the summer, “it’s especially important to help kids stay active and safe, in order to keep kids engaged in their communities. They need safe places to have fun both day and night, and DCR’s Summer Nights Initiative provides more opportunities for kids in Boston to do just that. We are thrilled to welcome this valuable program back this summer.” The DCR has also commenced its popular Free Family Flicks movie series, with free movies being screened in select parks across the Commonwealth. The extension of summer operations will continue through August 17, 2017. Here is a full schedule of extended hours and programming for additional youth access. The following 10 water/swimming facilities have extended hours of operations on Thursdays in July until 7:45 p.m. and in August until 7:30 p.m.: • Allied Veterans Memorial Pool (65 Elm St, Everett, MA). • Holland Memorial Pool (108 Mountain Ave, Malden, MA). • Olsen Pool (95 Turtle Pond Pkwy, Hyde Park, Boston, MA). • Sara Jane Sherman Memorial Pool (750 Meadow St, Chicopee, MA). • Southwest Corridor Park Spraydecks (Jamaica Plain, Boston, MA). • Bennett Field (Veterans Memorial) Pool (1260 Main St, Worcester, MA). • Lt. Colonel Edward J. Higgins Pool (180 Crawford St, Lawrence, MA). • Ryan Wading Pool (350 River St, Mattapan, Boston, MA). • Melnea Cass Pool (120 Martin Luther King Blvd, Roxbury, Boston, MA). • Vietnam Veterans Pool (339 Eastern Avenue, Fall River, MA). Learn about additional programs available from Mass DCR. To find out more about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Governor Baker addresses Massachusetts’ life sciences commitment at BIO International Convention
Governor Charlie Baker addressed the 2017 BIO International Convention in San Diego this week to reinforce Massachusetts’ commitment to the life sciences sector as tech and innovation firms around the globe look to expand. Governor Baker also welcomed attendees to the 2018 BIO International Convention, which will be hosted at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center (BCEC) in June 2018. Here is a video of Governor Baker’s speech. Earlier in the week, the Baker-Polito Administration announced a legislative proposal to bolster Massachusetts’ leadership in the life sciences sector, which would provide up to $500 million over five years for strategic investments in public infrastructure, research and development, workforce training and education, including up to $295 million in capital authorization and up to $150 million job-creating tax incentives. Governor Baker said, “We are committed to supporting the public-private partnerships and strategic investments that have made Massachusetts a global leader in the life sciences, research, development and medical advancements. This proposal empowers the Commonwealth and the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center to continue that success, attracting world-class companies in innovation and technology, giving researchers the best available tools and educational environment, training our workforce and providing successful careers here in Massachusetts.” Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito said, “Our administration has a strong commitment to increasing educational opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math for students across Massachusetts. We have a talented pipeline ready to lead and learn in the life sciences, and through this proposal, we are excited to provide more opportunities for the Commonwealth’s fastest growing industry.” The BIO International Convention is hosted by the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) which represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.
Governor Baker’s Statewide Tour Highlights Successful Education Programs in Massachusetts
Governor Baker with students at the John D. O’Bryant School in Roxbury. This spring, the Baker-Polito Administration toured elementary, vocational technical and early education schools around the state to highlight what makes a Massachusetts education great. In addition, Governor Charlie Baker announced new programs aimed at college affordability and completion. Stops along the tour included the Forest Park Middle School in Springfield (May 16); the Bentley Elementary School in Salem (May 24) and the Head Start program and childcare center at the Greater Lawrence Community Action Council, Inc.(GLCAC) (May 24); and Leominister High School (May 31) and Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical High School in Fitchburg (June 15). After the Montachusett school visit, Governor Baker released a video capturing moments from the statewide education tour. “Our administration is proud of the hard work invested in learning and skill building throughout the system,” said Governor Baker. “We will continue to focus on opportunities, from early education to affordable college tuition rates, to strengthen every community and provide a bright future for our students.” On May 22, Governor Baker announced the expansion of a dual enrollment program between Massachusetts Maritime Academy and the John D. O’Bryant School of Math and Science in Roxbury. College officials pledged to fully-fund financial aid needs for qualified students from the John D. O’Bryant High School who are enrolled in the dual enrollment program and admitted to the Academy. On May 30, Governor Baker and Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh announced the creation of The Boston Bridge, a tuition-free pilot program for 2017 high school graduates who live in the City of Boston. The goal of the historic partnership is to eliminate financial barriers that prevent low-income students from going to college full-time, in order to boost college completion rates. “Boston Bridge is not just about access to college; it’s not just about low-cost or affordable college. It’s about college success and completion. This is about encouraging students and providing incentives for students to go to school full-time and complete on time,” Education Secretary James Peyser said. On June 2, Governor Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito joined Secretary Peyser, Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash and Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Ronald L. Walker, II in announcing $2.2 million in Skills Capital Grants to 10 vocational high schools. Since creating the grants last year, the Baker-Polito Administration has awarded more than $26.4 million in Skills Capital Grants to schools that partner with local businesses to align curriculum and credentials with businesses’ demand to maximize hiring opportunities. Since taking office in 2015, the Baker-Polito Administration has proposed increasing spending on all K-12 schools by more than $318 million.
Lufthansa Air Names Boston its City of the Month, Pays Homage to Thoreau
German airline Lufthansa has named Boston its “City of the Month” by releasing an inspiring short video that takes viewers on a 20 mile trek from downtown Boston to Walden Pond in Concord, Massachusetts. Walden is where 19th century American writer Henry David Thoreau, born 200 years ago this summer, lived out his philosophy of self-reliance. The video was made by videographer Sam Swan, and features local actresses Saili Kline and Krissy Price. The song on the video, Trip to Walden Pond, is the title track to a new album just released by Boston-based fiddle champion Hanneke Cassel Block. It is an original composition. “From the harbor to high rises, from townhouses to treetops, we followed the call of the wilderness in exploring all that is Boston. Care to take a walk with us?” reads the description on Lufthansa’s Facebook page. “Follow us in Thoreau’s footsteps from the buzzing city into the welcoming arms of Mother Nature,” reads the introduction, as the women walk along Boston’s waterfront, North End and downtown before arriving at Walden Pond. The video leaves viewers with the choice: “City or Nature? Whatever your choice is, make it your adventure.” The video has had over 300,000 views. Lufthansa has direct flights between Boston’s Logan International Airport and both Frankfort and Munich, Germany, according to Massport. In March, Lufthansa opened its new state-of-the-art lounge in Terminal E at Boston’s Logan Airport. Read Lufthansa’s Travel Guide to Boston. Massachusetts is celebrating the bi-centennial of the birth of Thoreau this summer and fall, with various events planned at Walden Pond, which is operated by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (MDCR). For visitor information about the Concord area, go to MerrimackValley.org. To find out what Massachusetts has to offer any time of year, visit MassVacation.com.
Massachusetts Celebrates the Centennial of President John F. Kennedy
The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum opens its new exhibition, JFK 100: Milestones & Mementos, on Friday, May 26. The exhibition chronicles historic milestones in the President’s career and administration, as well as the events of his personal and family life, features a compelling selection of items drawn mostly from the Kennedy Library’s collections. Highlights of the exhibition include family items from his childhood and adolescence; a flag from the PT 109 boat Kennedy commanded in World War II; items relating to the Cuban Missile Crisis, and notes jotted down by the President in preparation of his landmark address to the nation on civil rights. Here is a video tribute to President Kennedy from his daughter Caroline Kennedy and her family. Here are upcoming events commemorating the JFK Centennial in 2017. Located at Columbia Point in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood, the JFK Library is one of Massachusetts’ most popular tourism destinations. Since it opened in 1979, over eight million people have visited the JFK Library, including visitors from every US state and from dozens of countries around the world. In addition, 4.5 million people visit the JFK Library online annually. For information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Massachusetts War Memorials
The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism has issued a guide to select war memorials throughout the Commonwealth in advance of this year’s Memorial Day Weekend. Massachusetts residents have an illustrious history of military service, dating back to the Revolutionary War and continuing through today. MOTT’s war memorial brochure features a selection of memorials, ranging from the U.S.S. Constitution in Charlestown, Battleship Cove in Fall River and the Civil War Soldiers and Sailors Monuments on Boston Common, to the World War II Museum in Natick, World War II Auditorium in Worcester, the War Memorial Tower at Mt. Greylock and the Fallen Heroes Memorial in Boston’s Seaport District. Here is a list of all of the war memorials in Massachusetts. MOTT also provides a Memorial Day round-up of parades and commemorations, including free events at museums and attractions for veterans. You can find more information about various veterans programs in Massachusetts by visiting the Department of Veterans Services. For information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Governor Baker Announces $9.3 Million in Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Awards
Photo Caption: Governor Charlie Baker speaks at the Seamen’s Bethel and Mariners’ Home Last week Governor Charlie Baker joined state and local officials and cultural leaders at the historic Seamen’s Bethel and Mariners’ Home in New Bedford to announce $9.3 million in new awards from the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund (CFF). The grants are included in the Baker-Polito Administration’s Fiscal Year 2018 Capital Budget Plan. This new round of awards brings the total cultural investment to over $100 million since the fund was established ten years ago. Governor Baker said that Massachusetts “shares a rich history and diverse culture that benefit residents and attract visitors from around the nation and the world.” He described the Mass Cultural Facilities Fund as “a tremendously powerful way for us to lend investments across the commonwealth for really important local endeavors and projects.” Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito said the awards “help cities, towns and their nonprofit partners restore and preserve culturally and historically significant sites that provide educational opportunities to visitors and local families.” “The Cultural Facilities Fund has delivered on its original mission to support the nonprofit arts, humanities, and sciences to create jobs and new economic opportunity in the Commonwealth,” said Jay Ash, secretary, Executive Housing and Economic Development, and chair of the Board of MassDevelopment, which unanimously approved the grants at its May 11 meeting. “Today we celebrate a 10-year, public-private partnership that has strengthened one of our state’s greatest assets: its arts and cultural sector,” said Anita Walker, executive director of the Massachusetts Cultural Council. “We are deeply grateful to the Governor and Legislature for the sustained commitment to the Cultural Facilities Fund.” Over $100 million in CFF awards since 2007 have supported 772 building projects in the nonprofit arts, sciences and humanities, with total development costs of $2.6 billion, driving cultural tourism, job growth, and community vitality in cities and towns across Massachusetts. Over ten years CFF-funded projects have supported 8,512 full time jobs and $492 million in wages, employed 23,778 architects, engineers, contractors, and construction workers, and created 2,092 new permanent jobs. Led by the Waterfront Historic Area League and the New Bedford Port Society, the Seamen’s Bethel project restores and preserves two of the city’s most iconic buildings, honors New Bedford’s fishermen and enhances the Whaling National Historical Park, site of one of the most beloved passages from Herman Melville’s classic American novel, “Moby Dick,” as an international visitor destination. The newly reopened historic Seamen’s Bethel and Mariners’ Home in the city’s Seaport Cultural District, had received a $440,000 matching CFF grant in 2014, and Governor Baker announced an additional $150,000 for the facility at the May 19 event. MassDevelopment President and CEO Marty Jones said, “The Cultural Facilities Fund supports the Commonwealth’s priceless cultural and historical resources, which create jobs, draw thousands of visitors to Massachusetts, and grow the state’s creative economy.” The new round of awards includes 61 capital grants totaling about $8.9 million and another 18 planning grants totaling nearly $400,000. Grants range from $7,000 to $300,000, and must be matched one-to-one from private and/or other public sources. MassDevelopment and Mass Cultural Council jointly administer the CFF, and an Advisory Committee appointed by the Governor provides oversight to its operation. The grants announced on May 19 were supported with $10 million from the state’s fiscal year 2017 capital plan, authorized by the state Legislature and allocated by the Governor. Learn more about the CFF here.
National Travel and Tourism Week, May 7-13, 2017
Across the United States, tourism professionals are celebrating National Travel & Tourism Week, which runs from May 7-13 2017. First established in 1983, the annual tradition is organized by the U.S. Travel Association, and shines a spotlight on the tourism industry’s economic contributions in terms of direct spending, taxes, job creation and wages. The theme of this year’s Travel & Tourism Week is Faces of Travel, highlighting people who work in the industry. In Massachusetts, the tourism community celebrated Tourism Day on April 7 with an event at the State House. Governor Charlie Baker issued a Massachusetts Tourism Day proclamation extolling economic benefits tourism has on the state’s economy, including 135,000 jobs and $14.4 billion in paid wages. In 2015, 25 million domestic and 2.5 million international travelers came to Massachusetts, a total of 27.5 million visitors. They spent $20.2 billion on lodging, meals, cultural and recreational attractions, transportation and retail. This direct spending generated $1.3 billion in state and local taxes In addition to economic benefits, tourism strengthens the cohesiveness of communities, by showcasing important cultural treasures such as museums, performing arts, culinary programs, shopping and outdoor recreation. And it creates awareness about Massachusetts’ vibrant ethnic communities, college campuses, maritime industry and agricultural riches. The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT) is the primary state agency and works with international and domestic partners to promote the state as a year round destination. It also partners with BrandUSA and Discover New England to reach foreign markets around the world. Massachusetts has 16 regional tourism councils (RTCs) across the Commonwealth that promote tourism year round to both leisure and business travelers. Other key partners in promoting tourism include the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority (MCCA), which brings in hundreds of professional conventions and conferences each year; Massachusetts Cultural Council, the state agency that funds the arts, humanities and interpretive sciences; and Massport, operator of Logan International Airport, which has 54 direct international flights and 75 direct domestic flights. Enjoy Travel & Tourism Week!
Congratulations to the Massachusetts Class of 2017
Photo: Salem State University Commencement, 2016 The caps and gowns are on display this spring as over 100,000 students prepare to graduate from 110 public and private college and universities in Massachusetts. Here is a schedule of college commencements in Massachusetts this May & June, 2017. Massachusetts takes pride in its world renowned higher education system, which helps drive Massachusetts’ economy. According to the US Census, 46.1% of Massachusetts residents hold a bachelor, master or doctorate degree, the highest percentile in the United States. The Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Massachusetts (AICUM) reports that Massachusetts ranks first in the nation in percentage of students graduating from independent colleges in four years. Independent schools have a $25 billion annual economic impact on Massachusetts. In addition to the private colleges, Massachusetts serves about 260,000 students at 29 public schools including 15 community colleges, nine state universities and five University of Massachusetts campuses, according to the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education. Here is a full list of Massachusetts’ public colleges and universities. In April 2016, Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito and Executive Office of Education Secretary Jim Peyser announced the Commonwealth Commitment, an innovative college affordability and completion plan to help more students achieve the dream of a college degree. In August 2016, Governor Baker signed the economic development bill, Opportunities for All, which included a College Savings Tax Deduction for Massachusetts residents who make deposits into prepaid tuition or college savings accounts. The college commencement season is also a boost for the Massachusetts tourism economy, since it attracts 350,000 people, mainly family and friends, to the Commonwealth, according to the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau (GBCVB). These visitors generate roughly 100,000 hotel room nights, 500,000 meals at local restaurants, and spend about $90 million. The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT) has compiled a web page called Explore Colleges for students and their families visiting Massachusetts. You’ll find information about the schools, and also valuable information about local transportation, seasonal activities, and special events that give you a flavor of each school. It’s a great resource for parents making their first trip to Massachusetts to explore potential colleges and universities for their children. Congratulations Class of 2017.
Small Business Month in Massachusetts
Photo: Lt. Governor Karyn Polito kicks off Small Business Month at Clark University in Worcester. On stage is (l-r) Peter Milano, MOBD Regional Director, and Jay Ash, Secretary of EOHED. The Baker-Polito Administration officially proclaimed May as Small Business Month in Massachusetts, citing small businesses as “the backbone of the American economy.” This month, the Executive Office of Housing & Economic Development (EOHED) and Massachusetts Office of Business Development (MOBD) have scheduled ten listening sessions across the Commonwealth to discuss ways in which Massachusetts can encourage economic growth and job creation. These listening sessions will inform the economic development strategy of the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development. Here is a schedule of the listening sessions. Governor Charlie Baker said that small businesses “account for close to half of our state’s employment and our administration will continue to advance policies and partnerships to support our local economy. We welcome this opportunity to further engage the small business community on ideas to drive new growth and job creation.” Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito said the contributions of small businesses “extend beyond the number of jobs they create and serve as a backbone of every region, downtown and community in Massachusetts. We look forward to highlighting existing resources available to small businesses and soliciting further ideas through listening sessions across the state.” EOHED Secretary Jay Ash said, “We are looking to create continuous engagement with our small business community to collaborate on how to best support this critical sector of the Massachusetts’ economy.” MOBD Assistant Secretary for Business Development Nam Pham said the listening sessions “give us the opportunity to discuss the complex issues that our small businesses face, from access to capital to navigating state resources. Through conversations with stakeholders and local leaders, we hope to identify the challenges in each region of the Commonwealth and build strategies to expand opportunities for our small businesses.”
Massachusetts Celebrates Jazz Month & International Jazz Day
Sunday, April 30 is International Jazz Day, which is organized by UNESCO each year to highlight jazz and its diplomatic role of uniting people in all corners of the world. In Massachusetts, Governor Charlie Baker has declared April 2017 to be Jazz Month, a tribute to the state’s vibrant, year-round jazz scene. Governor Baker called jazz “one of America’s most treasured exports, connecting races, cultures and continents.” Here is Massachusetts’ Jazz Month Proclamation. The proclamation coincides with “Jazz Week 2017,” organized each year by JazzBoston, a non-profit organization that promotes jazz year round in greater Boston. Another resource for jazz lovers is MassJazz.com at the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism, a year round marketing effort to promote the state’s jazz performance and education. For information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
State Officials Stocks Half a Million Trout in Bodies of Water Across Massachusetts
Governor Charlie Baker waded feet first into the Massachusetts fishing season this morning by visiting Jamaica Pond in Boston, helping to stock the pond with nearly 1,000 trout. He was joined by students from the Mary Curley Elementary and Middle School, Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton, Department of Fish and Game Commissioner George Peterson, local legislators, City of Boston Parks & Recreation Commissioner Chris Cook and local fishermen and JP residents. This spring, the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife is releasing 500,000 trout produced at state-operated hatcheries in Belchertown, Montague, Sandwich, Palmer, and Sunderland. The program helps to supplement existing fish populations and provide greater recreational opportunities while distributing brook, brown, rainbow, and tiger trout into more than 500 bodies of water throughout the Commonwealth each year. Here is a map of this year’s trout stocking. 2017 spring trout stocking stats: Most of the trout will be over 12 inches Nearly half of the trout will be over 14 inches More than 1,400 brown trout will be over 18 inches More than 600 brook trout will be over 15 inches More than 2000 tiger trout will be over 14 inches Follow Division of Fisheries & Wildlife on Facebook. Massachusetts offers beautiful freshwater lakes, reservoirs, ponds, streams, and rivers for people to fish and enjoy a great day on the water. Fishing is extremely popular in Massachusetts, with nearly 190,000 residents purchasing a freshwater fishing license every year, in addition to 18,000 non-residents who travel here to enjoy the great freshwater fishing opportunities. Those aged 15 or older need a license to fish in Massachusetts inland waters. For residents 15–17 years of age, and those over 70, there is no fee. Those under 15 may fish without a license. A fishing license is available online at MassFishHunt or in person at a license vendor around the state. To find out more about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Massachusetts Holds 10 Small Business Listening Sessions throughout May
On behalf of the Baker-Polito Administration, EOHED Secretary Jay Ash invites you to attend a listening session on small business in your region of the Commonwealth. Please register in advance for the event of your choice. Topics include: Doing Business in Massachusetts (regulations, taxes, fees) Government Resources (grants, networks, expertise) Access to Capital (community based lending, micro-lending, seed money, predatory lending) Access to Government Contracts & Supplier Diversity Main Street Support Discussion on Local Issues Central Kick-off with Lieutenant Governor Polito Tuesday, May 2, 2017 at 7:30 a.m. Clark University Higgins Center Worcester, MA Register Here Cape Cod with Deputy Secretary Carolyn Kirk Thursday, May 4, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. Chatham Community Center Chatham, MA Register Here. West Mass with Secretary Jay Ash Tuesday, May 9, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. Holyoke Community College Kittredge Center Holyoke, MA Register Here: Berkshire County with Secretary Jay Ash Wednesday, May 10, 2017 at 7:30 a.m. Berkshire Community College Pittsfield, MA Register Here. Northeast with Deputy Secretary Carolyn Kirk Monday, May 15, 2017 at 7:30 a.m. Salem State University Salem, MA Register Here. South Coast with Assistant Secretary Juan Vega Tuesday, May 16, 2017 at 7:30 a.m. Bristol Community College Fall River, MA Register Here. Brockton with Lieutenant Governor Polito Wednesday, May 17, 2017 at 1:30 p.m. The Conference Center at Massasoit Brockton, MA Register Here. MetroWest with Secretary Jay Ash Tuesday, May 23, 2017 at 7:30 a.m. The Center for Arts Natick (TCAN) Natick, MA Register Here. North Central with Secretary Jay Ash Thursday, May 25, 2017 at 7:30 a.m. Mount Wachusett Community College Gardner, MA Register Here. Greater Boston with Secretary Jay Ash Wednesday, May 31, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. MassChallenge Boston, MA Register Here. Print the full schedule here.
Ted Cutler, Patron of the Arts in Boston (1930- 2017)
Ted Cutler, patron of the arts, advocate for education, supporter of the parks and friend of the needy in Boston, died Thursday, March 30, 2017 at age 86. Governor Charlie Baker said, “His legacy will continue to live on through his many philanthropic contributions and his deep commitment to the people of the Commonwealth. His kindness, generosity and compassion will be sorely missed.” Mayor Martin J. Walsh said, “Boston has lost a philantropic giant. We will work to ensure his legacy continues to shine a light on the city of Boston.” One of Boston’s leading philantropists, Ted Cutler’s generosity ranged from helping to feed the hungry to underwriting the holiday lights on Commonwealth Avenue Mall. His main passion was for the performing arts and for Emerson College, his alma mater. Among his most recent contributions to the people of Massachusetts was the free, outdoor festival, Outside the Box on Boston Common, which featured hundreds of performing artists, musicians, dancers, comedians, magicians and actors. The annual festival was popular with residents and tourists alike. Read more about the vision for Outside the Box here, and also tributes to Ted Cutler from his friends and admirers.
U.S. News & World Report Names Massachusetts #1 State in America
U.S. News & World Report debuted its Best States rankings this week and Massachusetts was ranked the #1 State in the United States. The rankings are based on various factors, such as education health care, infrastructure, government economy, opportunity and justice. The project includes 28 rankings using 68 metrics, 26 data sources and 10,000 data points. Here is a summary of all 50 states. Massachusetts’ highest rankings include: # 1 Educational Attainment #1 College readiness #2 Medicare quality #3 Pre-K to 12th grade “Massachusetts is a great place to live, work and raise a family because of the strength and character of all those who call the Commonwealth home,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Everyone should be proud that Massachusetts continues to lead the nation in health care access and public education for all citizens, and our administration will continue to build on these accomplishments to bring more economic success to every corner of Massachusetts.” In an interview on CBS This Morning, Governor Baker joined Brian Kelly, editor and chief content officer for the Report, to discuss the Commonwealth’s #1 overall ranking. “We have a lot of great schools” in Massachusetts, Governor Baker said. “That has led to a whole series of terrific, what I would call ecosystems around technology and healthcare and finance and education. You put it all together, in this day and age, in this kind of global economy and global world we live in, and it’s a terrific mix.” Health care factored into the state’s high rankings, according to the Report. In 2015, 96.4% of residents had health care insurance, the highest in the country, and the health care industry contributed $19.77 billion to state’s economy. Massachusetts also ranked first in Broadband access, and was also cited for its low unemployment and rate of new business growth, ranking second in the nation for new patents. “We also do have a bipartisan approach to working together,” Baker said. “People are okay with the ideas of compromise and collaboration. If you look at the success we’ve had policy-wise in the education, health care, and economy spaces, energy and a whole bunch of others, they’ve all been done on a bipartisan basis.” Reporter Visi Tilak, who wrote the Massachusetts summary, wrote, “Its vibrant academic environment, innovative and supportive health care policies and modernizing economy, measure for measure, make this small New England powerhouse with a population of 6.8 million the strongest state of all.” Tilak concluded that the indicators “point to a promising future for a state presently ranked No. 1 overall, a state whose fabric is woven with the modern and traditional, immense range and diversity, a formula that allows for tremendous innovation and growth.” Find out about visiting Massachusetts at MassVacation.com.
Governor Baker announces budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2018
(Photo courtesy of State House News) The Baker-Polito Administration filed its Fiscal Year 2018 (FY18) budget proposal on January 25, 2017. The $40.508 billion spending plan funds key priorities including local aid, education, workforce development, housing and homelessness services, and substance misuse prevention programs, while keeping spending in line with recurring revenues and does not raise taxes. See video on the budget proposal, with comments by Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito and Kristen Lepore, Secretary of Administration and Finance. “This budget reaffirms our commitment to the hardworking people of the Commonwealth to propose a balanced budget that significantly invests in education, workforce development and funds to fight the opioid epidemic—without raising taxes,” said Governor Baker. “While practicing fiscal discipline and reining in spending, we are also pleased to introduce new initiatives like the ‘Learn to Earn’ program to shrink the unemployment and underemployment gap in our state and a $4,000 tax-credit for employers hiring an unemployed veteran. I look forward to working with our colleagues in the legislature so that we can all make Massachusetts a better place to live, work, and raise a family.” Read more information on the Governor’s filing letter, budget message and specific account informmation.
Governor Baker Delivers Second State of the Commonwealth Address
This week, Governor Charlie Baker delivered his second State of the Commonwealth address from the House Chamber of the Massachusetts State House. Members of the audience included Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Speaker of the House Robert A. DeLeo, Senate President Stanley C. Rosenberg, members of the House and Senate, state officers, business leaders and community groups. “Our economy is among the strongest in the nation,“ Governor Baker told the assembled guests. “Over the past two years we’ve added 120,000 jobs. Today more people are working than at any time in the past 20 years. The companies of the future are moving to Massachusetts, bringing millions in private investment, while new companies are born here every day. In fact, for the second year in a row, Bloomberg named Massachusetts the #1 state for innovation. “It’s not an accident that Massachusetts is such an attractive place to do business. It’s a reflection of the quality of our people and the business climate we’ve created,” he said. Governor Baker also spoke about the progress being made on energy in Massachusetts. “Together, we passed landmark legislation that will reduce our carbon footprint while maintaining a competitively priced and reliable supply of energy. And we’ve built on those efforts by issuing an Executive Order on Climate Change that directs state government to work with local governments, business, and non-profits to develop plans to further protect our environment and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.” In terms of making government more efficient and more accessible to businesses and citizens in Massachusetts, Governor Baker said, “We’ve reviewed, updated and eliminated thousands of pages of outdated and obsolete state regulations, which has reduced red tape and made it easier for employers, non-profits and cities and towns to do their jobs.” Governor Baker also talked about Massachusetts’ innovation economy and its global reputation in technology, health and the life sciences. “We all know the world is becoming more and more dependent on technology. Smart buildings. Smarter machines. Robotics. Autonomous vehicles. Digital health. Precision manufacturing. And big data to name a few,” Baker said. “These are the platforms of the next generation of great companies and new jobs. And cyber security that moves as fast as the hackers, thieves and troublemakers is what makes this all possible. Success in protecting databases and smart machines will ensure that people benefit from the best ideas in science, engineering and technology for decades to come. Baker called Massachusetts “one of the three most important players in cyber security in the world,” and said the industry is just taking off. “Hundreds of billions of dollars will be spent over the next decade to protect information and assets. Massachusetts’ organizations should play a major role in driving these decisions. Over the next ten months we’ll bring together the best minds locally and globally to develop a blueprint for success here in Massachusetts. And we will follow it.” Finally, the governor praised the veterans of Massachusetts but noted that “too many of our returning heroes struggle to find good jobs. So we’ll be proposing a $4,000 tax credit for businesses hiring and retaining an unemployed veteran.” Here is the full text of Governor Baker’s address.
Massachusetts Senate Hosting Commonwealth Conversations 2017
The Massachusetts Senate is hosting its annual Commonwealth Conversations, a state wide listening tour of grassroots forums designed to connect state legislators directly with constituents to hear their ideas, concerns and suggestions. The series kicks off on Tuesday, January 31 in the Metro Boston region, and continues through Tuesday, April 11 in the North Shore region. See full schedule below. The Massachusetts State Senate is “bringing Beacon Hill to you with Commonwealth Conversations 2017,” said Senate President Stanley C. Rosenberg, who called the initiative “part of the next step in our ongoing efforts to make your government even more responsive and accessible to you.” Here is a schedule of the upcoming forums: Date Region January 31 Metro Boston February 7 South Coast February 28 South Shore March 7 Southeast March 14 Central Mass March 21 Northeast March 28 Western Mass April 4 MetroWest April 11 North Shore
Moby-Dick Marathon Celebrates Literary & Maritime Traditions of Massachusetts
The 21st annual Moby-Dick Marathon is taking place this weekend at the New Bedford Whaling Museum. The annual readthon is a tribute to Herman Melville’s classic novel about the whaling industry that thrived in New Bedford, Fall River, Nantucket and other seaports in the 19th Century. The annual reading takes place over 25 hours and attracts over 2,500 guests and participants. In addition to celebrating Melville’s literary masterpiece, the Moby-Dick Marathon also raises funds and awareness for the New Bedford Whaling Museum, which provides year round educational programs for school children while also serving as a major tourist attraction for the City of New Bedford and for the Southeastern Massachusetts region, according to Dagny Ashley, director of Destination New Bedford. In addition to English, other languages included in this year’s marathon included Hebrew, German, French, Dutch, Italian and various others. The 22nd Moby-Dick Marathon is scheduled to take place on January 6-7, 2018. Read more about the New Bedford Whaling Museum, which is part of the The New Bedford Whaling National Historic Park founded in 1996. Here are other Herman Melville references throughout Massachusetts. To learn more about visiting Massachusetts, check out the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism’s web site MassVacation.com.
In Boston, Chinese Pop Star Connects East and West Culture
International music star Leehom Wang, known as the King of Chinese Pop, returned to his musical roots in Boston recently for a spectacular performance of his classic songs at Boston Symphony Hall. A 1999 alumnus of the Berklee College of Music, Leehom invited onstage with him an international cast of student musicians from Berklee for the performance. With over 60 million social media followers, Leehom has won numerous music awards, including multiple Golden Melody Awards in Taiwan, comparable to the Grammy Awards in U.S. From Tony Bennett to Westlife and Aviici, Leehom has expanded his popularity across the globe by collaborating with world-renowned musicians. What drives this singer-songwriter, music producer, actor, film director, and cultural ambassador back to Berklee? It is Leehom’s enduring commitment to connecting people from different cultures through music and his mission of helping aspiring Chinese musicians realize their musical dreams. “One of the most important things for the safety and security of the century is the relationship between the east and west, and Leehom is the ambassador who can help us build that,” said Roger H. Brown, president of Berklee College of Music, who awarded Mr. Wang an honorary Doctor of Music degree in recognition of his achievements. In the acceptance speech, Leehom confessed, “That’s why we make music – to connect people.” He encouraged all of the Chinese music lovers and future musicians to be ambassadors and to build bridges between the east and west. To help make that a reality, Leehom and Berklee have created a full scholarship in Wang Leehom’s name for Chinese students to attend Berklee, with part of the proceeds from the concert going to the scholarship foundation. The scholarship will be presented next year in China. Since graduating from Berklee, Leehom has committed himself to transforming the landscape of China’s pop music with his hybrid blending of pop, rock, jazz, R&B, hip-hop, classical and traditional Chinese melodies. No doubt, Berklee’s long history of working with diverse musical traditions from cultures all over the world partly inspired Leehom’s genre-hopping creation. “He’s a strong role model for our students – in him we see the possibilities for young, international musicians who come to Berklee, gain the tools and skills they need, and return to their roots, enriching the world and its music,” said Matthew Nicholl, associate vice president for Global Studies. Berklee has been a destination for international musicians since its founding in 1945. Today, nearly 36% of all Berklee students are from outside the U.S. With over 100 colleges and universities, Massachusetts is considered a global hub of top-tier education, attracting students from around the world. The Berklee College of Music, which has alumni from over 40 countries, is a place where aspiring musicians can explore opportunities and possibilities here in Massachusetts, just like Leehom Wang did.
Massachusetts Issues Thanksgiving Day Proclamation
Commonwealth of Massachusetts A Proclamation His Excellency Governor Charles D. Baker Whereas After the first harvest in 1621, the Pilgrims gathered with their neighbors, the Wampanoag Native Americans, broke bread, gave thanks and celebrated their freedom in Plymouth, observing the first Thanksgiving in the American colonies; and Whereas During the American Revolution in November 1777, the Continental Congress proclaimed a day of Thanksgiving. Samuel Adams, a son of Massachusetts, wrote, “…for solemn thanksgiving and praise, that with one heart and one voice the good people may express the grateful feelings of their hearts and consecrate themselves to the service of their divine benefactor”; and Whereas With the country torn by a civil war, Abraham Lincoln urged his fellow Americans to gather and give thanks during one of the most difficult times of our nation’s history. Establishing Thanksgiving as a national holiday in 1864, Lincoln wrote, “To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God”; and Whereas In this season of thanks, we should take the time to remember and reach out to our neighbors in need, by providing a helping hand, working in a food pantry or kitchen, donating clothing or volunteering in our communities; and Whereas Today as families and friends across the Commonwealth and country gather together, may we be mindful of our gifts and talents, our blessings, relationships and goodwill, the peace we enjoy, the liberty we cherish and the hope we have for a joyful year ahead, Now, Therefore, I, Charles D. Baker, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim November 24th, 2016, to be, Thanksgiving Day And urge all the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance. Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston, this first Day of November, in the year two thousand and sixteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and fortieth. By His Excellency Charles D. Baker Governor of the Commonwealth Karyn E. Polito Lt. Governor of the Commonwealth William Francis Galvin Secretary of the Commonwealth
National Parks Service Celebrates 100th Anniversary
Today, Massachusetts joined other states across the nation in celebrating the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service. A special birthday party, complete with a cake, balloons, children’s activities and live music, was held at Columbus Park in Boston, overlooking the Boston Harbor Islands. Michael Creasey, Superintendent of National Parks Boston, welcomed hundreds of spectators to mark the occasion with a giant birthday cake, speeches by public officials and assorted free games for families and children on the park lawn. Park advocates also handed out informational materials on the state’s parks, historical landmarks and preserved spaces. Joining Superintendent Creasey at the podium were US Senator Ed Markey, US Congressmen Mike Capuano and Stephen Lynch, Massachusetts Energy and Environment Secretary Matt Beaton and City of Boston Policy Director Joyce T. Linehan. Secretary Beaton read a citation from the Baker-Polito Administration congratulating the National Park Service on its century-long stewardship. Also attending the ceremony were Nam Pham Assistant Secretary of Business Development, Francois-Laurent Nivaud, Executive Director of the Mass Office of Travel & Tourism and Pat Moscaritolo, Executive Director & CEO of the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau. After the speaking portion, the US Postal service unveiled its commemorative stamps in honor of the National Park Service centennial. And musicians from the Berklee College of Music led the crowd in a Happy Birthday song, then entertained for the afternoon. Massachusetts is proud to have 14 National Parks throughout the Commonwealth. Here is a list of free activities in the Boston National Parks over the next three days. Nationwide, the National Park Service is offering free admission to all 413 parks across the country (from August 25-28).
Massachusetts Expands Apprenticeship Opportunities
Photo courtesy of Greater Boston JACT Last week the Baker-Polito Administration’s Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced $200,000 in grant funding to expand and diversify apprenticeship opportunities and strengthen existing programs in Massachusetts. The funds came from the ApprenticeshipUSA State Accelerator Grant, issued by the United States Department of Labor (DOL). Governor Charlie Baker said the funding allows Massachusetts “to prepare a pipeline of skilled workers for future employment. Ensuring that our strong and skilled workforce continues to develop and succeed results in a prospering economic environment across the Commonwealth.” The grant enables the Massachusetts Apprenticeship Initiative to expand opportunities to other areas of the state, new industries, occupations and additional employers. The Initiative is a collaboration of 50 businesses, the state Department of Career Services, Division of Apprentice Standards, the Massachusetts Community Colleges Executive Office, the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative, and six local workforce development boards. Under DOL requirements, all registered apprenticeship programs must include five components – on-the-job training, direct business involvement, related instruction, rewards for skill gains, and a national occupational credential. Lt. Governor Karyn Polito said, “As our state’s economy continues to grow, apprenticeships will play an increasingly important role in training individuals for job openings now and into the future, and supporting job growth and economic development across Massachusetts.” The Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development, through the Department of Career Services and Division of Apprentice Standards, will build upon partnerships in an effort to expand the number of employers with apprenticeship programs. Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Ronald L. Walker, II said. The funding allows the Commonwealth to “create more strategic partnerships in industries that already employ apprentices, while also reaching out to nontraditional industries for apprenticeship opportunities such as IT, healthcare, cyber-security, advanced manufacturing and others.” According to the US Department of Labor, “Apprenticeships are a proven path to high quality, secure middle-class jobs. In fact, 87 percent of apprentices are employed after completing their programs, with an average starting wage above $50,000 per year.”
Massachusetts Celebrates the Great Outdoors in June
(Photo: Governor Baker at 2016 Capital Campout at Fort Independence) Today, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker is declaring June as Great Outdoors Month in Massachusetts. See the Governor’s proclamation below. Governor Baker and First Lady Lauren Baker are participating in the second annual Capital Campout at Fort Independence at Castle Island in South Boston. They’re joined by Energy & Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Matthew Beaton, Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Commissioner Leo Roy, and fourth grade students from the Franklin D. Roosevelt School in Boston’s Hyde Park neighborhood. This event is meant to highlight support for the Massachusetts State Parks and demonstrate the importance of active and healthy outdoor, community-building activities for Massachusetts children. “Introducing kids and adults to new recreational opportunities…is important to inspire families to learn about new places and engage in new experiences together to share adventures that will last a lifetime,” the proclamation reads. The Capital Campout program is a national initiative that targets youth with little exposure to America’s outdoor legacy and helps to increase visitation at parks. At Independence Park, Governor and Mrs. Baker will participate with the students and their families in learning camping skills. They will camp out overnight, setting up tents, building a campfire and cooking over it. The event includes fun activities such as a group campfire, storytelling, singing, games and a tour of the fort. In 2015, Massachusetts created a Public Service Announcement (PSA) Video that launched Great Outdoors Month. The video was selected by the American Recreation Coalition and The Coleman Company as one of five national video winners to receive $1,000 grant, which Governor Baker is giving to All Out Adventures, a non-profit organization that provides recreation program for people of all abilities, including individuals with disabilities and their families, often in Massachusetts state park facilities. Below is a copy of the Great Outdoors Month Proclamation
Massachusetts Strikes the Right Chord for International Musicians
Returning to his small, rented apartment in Boston, Xuefei Cheng turns on his CD player to enjoy his favorite jazz performer, Hiromi Uehara, a Japanese-born, Berklee-trained jazz composer and pianist whose music encompasses the elements of classical music, rock and jazz. As a first year Master’s student majoring in clarinet at Boston University, Xuefei spends most of his leisure time enjoying or playing jazz, even though his academic concentration is classical music. Cheng’s passion for clarinet started a decade ago when he heard a clarinet piece in a Harry Potter movie. The instrument’s distinct sound lingered in his mind and drove him to take up music. When studying classical clarinet at Beijing’s Central Conservatory of Music, he was officially introduced to jazz. “Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin is the first song that exposed me to the beauty of jazz clarinet, and I’ve been obsessed with jazz ever since,” says Xuefei. “For me, classical music is suitable for the weekdays when you are restrained and stressed out by work, whereas jazz is like the weekend when you can lay back and be relaxed.” In college, Xuefei was a frequent guest at top-tier, jazz concerts at Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing. He also frequented the East Shore Bar in the Houhai neighborhood in Beijing, where China’s top jazz artists played. By then he had joined a jazz club at school and was performing weekly. Upon graduating from the Conservatory, Cheng studied with John Bruce Yeh, the assistant principle clarinet at Chicago Symphony Orchestra, then came to Boston University to further his studies. He describes Boston as “a hub of education and a city saturated with diligence and passion,” and the best place for him to advance his performing skills. “Boston is definitely the ideal place to learn classical music, but what’s special about this city is that it embraces diversity, just like Hiromi’s music,” he says. “Jazz will always be an indispensable part of my life, and with the skills accumulated through the study and practices of classical music, I can fuel my passion for jazz more freely and easily.” Like Xuefei, a growing number of international students are coming to Massachusetts to explore their educational and career life in music in recent years. A variety of top-tier music institutes, world-known Symphony Orchestras, and a diverse music genres all convene together in MA to provide unlimited possibilities for musicians and music lovers from around the world.
Congrats to 2016 College Graduates in Massachusetts
Photo: 2016 Undergraduate Commencement at UMass Amherst Spring is a time to celebrate in Massachusetts each year as over 100,000 students graduate from 110 public and private college and universities. Here is a list of the 2016_Commencement Dates _ Speakers_. And it is a time for the Commonwealth to take pride in its world renowned higher education system, which helps drive Massachusetts’ economy. According to the US Census, 46.1% of Massachusetts residents hold a bachelor, master or doctorate degree, the highest percentile in the United States. The Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Massachusetts (AICUM) reports that Massachusetts ranks first in the nation in percentage of students graduating from independent colleges in four years. Independent schools have a $25 billion annual economic impact on Massachusetts. In addition to the private colleges, Massachusetts serves about 260,000 students at 29 public schools including 15 community colleges, nine state universities and five University of Massachusetts campuses, according to the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education. Here is a full list of Massachusetts’ public colleges and universities. The college commencement season is also a boost for the Massachusetts economy, since it attracts 350,000 people, mainly family and friends, to the Commonwealth, according to the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau (GBCVB). These visitors generate roughly 100,000 hotel room nights, 500,000 meals at local restaurants, and spend about $90 million. The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism has compiled a list of all colleges and universities in Massachusetts, separated by region. You’ll find information about the schools, and also valuable information about local transportation, seasonal activities, and special events that give you a flavor of each school. It’s a great resource for parents making their first trip to Massachusetts to explore potential colleges and universities for their children.
PaxEast 2016 Taps into Massachusetts Creative & Innovation Economies
At first glance, this year’s annual PaxEast 2016 gathering at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center in South Boston resembled a gigantic costume ball, replete with fictional and virtual characters from video games, movies, comic books and the far reaches of someone’s imagination. Massachusetts has a stake in the $67 billion gaming industry, which helps to fuel the state’s creative industries and innovation economy. Tens of thousands of gamers, investors, retailers and experts attend PaxEast each year, supporting the local tourism and hospitality industries. PaxEast is also a valuable stage for aspiring entrepreneurs and game developers to find a ready audience to view new products. One of the most popular elements of the show is the Pax East Indie Showcase, described as “a collection of the best indie games you’ve never heard of available on mobile platforms.” Timothy Loew, executive director of the Massachusetts Digital Games Institute (MassDigi) noted the top local video game companies on the Expo Hall floor, included Harmonix, Proletariat, The Deep End Games and The Molasses Flood among a number of others. Numerous Massachusetts schools exhibited, including Becker College in Worcester; Elms College in Chicopee, Mount Ida College in Newton and the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). “Each year the Boston-area game scene, like PAX East, gets bigger and more exciting,” Lowe says. “With more people playing more games on more devices in more places than ever before, I already can’t wait until the next PaxEast in 2017.” To learn more about the state’s Video Gaming opportunities, contact Massachusetts Digital Games Institute (MassDigi). Here is a schedule of upcoming conventions in Massachusetts. For information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
MassEcon Event Welcomes New Companies from Around the World
Photo Caption: MassEcon hosts Corporate Welcome Reception at Genzyme for 19 companies new to Massachusetts. Company leaders are pictured with Governor Charlie Baker, EOHED Secretary Jay Ash and MassEcon Executive Director, Susan Houston. Photo by Janet Stearns. This week MassEcon held its 8th annual Corporate Welcome Reception at Sanofi Genzyme headquarters in Kendall Square, Cambridge. Over 100 private sector leaders and senior state officials, including Governor Charlie Baker, were on hand to welcome the representatives from thirteen companies and six airlines to Massachusetts. The sector and geographical diversity of the group speaks to all that Massachusetts has to offer to companies seeking a foothold in the state’s innovation economy. The new companies represent a wide variety of industries including life sciences, education, energy, manufacturing, online retail and transportation. And they come from all parts of the United States and the world. International companies originating from Canada, Israel, Mexico, Norway, Sweden,Turkey and the United Kingdom were represented along with domestic companies with corporate origins in California, Connecticut, Indiana, Kansas, New York and Washington. In his welcoming remarks, Governor Baker said, “Massachusetts’ innovative and entrepreneurial spirit, talented workforce and commitment to success has put the Commonwealth on the map as a place for businesses to grow and thrive. As we continue to build partnerships with our communities and the private sector, we welcome these companies from around the nation and the globe and look forward to the opportunity to encourage more businesses to call Massachusetts home, create jobs and bolster our economy.” According to MassEcon, the companies are adding 1,600 new jobs to the Commonwealth. MassEcon Chairman Brian Cohen said the companies at the event “represent impressive additions to the Commonwealth’s business community, and we look forward to their having a productive, successful, and long-standing relationship with the Commonwealth.” The 13 companies include Amazon in Fall River; Applied Photophysics in Beverly; Avigilon in Somerville; Olink Bioscience in Watertown; Sunrun in Marlborough; ERD Metal in Avon; Eli Lilly, IBM Watson Health, Philips, and WuXi AppTec in Cambridge; and General Electric, Harmon.ie, and LEGO Education in Boston. In addition, six international airlines that have recently launched non-stop flights to and from Boston’s Logan International Airport were among the honorees. They include AeroMexico; El Al Israel Airlines; Norwegian Air Shuttle; Qatar Airways; Scandinavian Airlines and WestJet Airlines. MassEcon Executive Director Susan Houston said the popular annual event “is our way of saying thank you for choosing the Commonwealth. It is also an opportunity for us to connect these companies with the robust network of resources Massachusetts has to offer.” MassEcon is a private non-profit entity that serves as the state’s private sector partner in promoting Massachusetts as the premier choice for business growth.
Governor Baker Addresses the National Society of Black Engineers in Boston
Governor Charlie Baker gave a welcoming address to the National Society of Black Engineers conference at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center on Thursday, March 24, 2016. This is the 42nd annual conference of the NSBE, which draws over 11,000 delegates from across the country and around the world. The theme of this year’s conference is “Engineering a Cultural Change.” Here is a full BSBE conference agenda for the week. In his welcoming remarks, Governor Baker, said, “It is very special for us that you chose Massachusetts, as we do consider ourselves to be a national leader in education, engineering, science and medicine.” In Massachusetts, Baker said, “We basically live by our wits, that’s always been what’s made us special and what’s made us great. In this day and age, when competition is global and everybody is competing, having an edge with respect to talent and education and what I would call capacity to play makes an enormous difference.” Video Courtesy of Antonio Caban/State House News Service Here is a schedule of upcoming professional conferences and meetings taking place in Massachusetts.
MASSACHUSETTS PARTICIPATES IN 2016 NATIONAL CONSUMER PROTECTION WEEK
As part of National Consumer Protection Week, which takes place March 6-12, 2016, the Massachusetts Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation is proud to announce its efforts on behalf of the Commonwealth’s consumers over the last year. In 2015, the Office of Consumer Affairs and its five regulatory agencies received more than 44,000 inquiries and more than 6,100 formal complaints from consumers. Through complaint resolutions, arbitration awards, examination reimbursements, and litigation settlements, nearly $7 million was returned to Massachusetts consumers. John Chapman, Undersecretary of Consumer Affairs, said, “During this National Consumer Protection Week, we want consumers to understand their rights under the law, take time to educate themselves before making big decisions, and know that both our Office and our regulatory agencies are in their corner to ensure their rights and fair marketplaces.” The Office of Consumer Affairs Home Improvement Contractor program made significant strides in 2015, registering 3,600 new contractors and renewing nearly 9,000 contractor registrations. The Home Improvement Arbitration Program awarded more than $330,000 to consumers and the Home Improvement Contractor Guaranty Fund paid-out more than $215,000 to aggrieved consumers. “Our Office is engaged in a full-on effort to get all home improvement contractors registered in the Commonwealth,” said Chapman. “Ultimately, it’s a tremendous consumer protection, because consumers who hire unregistered contractors cannot qualify for the arbitration program or access the Guaranty Fund if they have problems with their contractors.” Other Notable Consumer Recoveries: • Banking – $1.2M • Insurance – $724,000 • Lemon Law – $253,000 • Telecommunications & Cable – $1.08M (includes $900,000 consumer refund for Charter Communications subscribers) • Weights & Measures – $765,000 In October, the Division of Banks and the Office of the Attorney General reached a settlement with Western Sky Financial, LLC and CashCall over predatory lending practices. The settlement provides for $2.4 million in direct consumer refunds and a $17 million write-down in the interest on loans made to Massachusetts consumers. As part of the Baker-Polito Administraion, the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation is committed to protecting consumers through consumer advocacy and education, and also works to ensure that the businesses its agencies regulate treat all Massachusetts consumers fairly. Follow the Office of Consumer Affairs through its blog, on Facebook, and on Twitter @mass_consumer.
Baker-Polito Administration Announces $9.3 Million in Workforce Skills Capital Grants
This week, Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito announced $9.3 million in workforce skills equipment grants to 35 high schools, community colleges and vocational training providers across the Commonwealth. The grants support vocational-technical education and training equipment purchases that connect Massachusetts students and residents to economic opportunities in high-demand industries. Governor Baker said the grants “will help build stronger communities and a more competitive business environment that ensures more residents have the skills they need to succeed in and support the Commonwealth’s economic future.” Lt. Governor Polito said the grants “will build bridges between residents seeking careers to build a future on, and the employers who need a skilled workforce to grow the state’s economy.” The Workforce Skills Capital Grant Program is a new initiative of the Governor’s Workforce Skills Cabinet, which seeks to align education, workforce and economic development strategies across the state. It is headed up by Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Ronald Walker II, Education Secretary James Peyser, and Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash. The inaugural round of the Workforce Skills Capital Grant program received 68 applications, requesting a total of $18 million in funding. Here is a list of the winning grant applications. Secretary Walker said the goal is to use available public dollars and “funnel them into places that can provide the skills and job training that residents need for the jobs that are available.” Secretary Peyser said the grants “will immediately transform the quality of vocational programs and cutting edge technological opportunities.” Secretary Ash said that by closing the skills gap, “we are equipping residents with the skills needed to fill the jobs of today and tomorrow, and setting the stage for future economic growth.” Consistent with the Baker-Polito Administration’s support for expanded workforce development opportunities, the Governor’s recently filed economic development legislation requests an additional $75 million in capital authorization for additional training equipment grants that strengthen workforce skills, and create strong employment pipelines.
Massachusetts is one of 17 states to join the Accord for a New Energy Future
This week, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker joined 16 other governors from around the nation in a bipartisan effort to promote clean energy, clean transportation choices and a modern electrical grid. Over 127 million Americans are represented in the participating states. The Governors’ Accord for a New Energy Future provides participating governors with a platform through which their states can collaborate, learn from one another, and leverage partnerships in energy planning and policy making. Governor Charlie Baker said the Accord “highlights the tremendous opportunities to create a shared clean, affordable and resilient energy future. Massachusetts will continue to lead the way on clean energy, energy efficiency and the adoption of innovative technologies such as energy storage. These efforts, and our legislative proposal to bring additional hydroelectricity and other renewable resources into the region, will ensure we meet our ambitious greenhouse gas emission reduction targets while also creating a stronger economy for the Commonwealth.” Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito said the Accord “allows us to collaborate with like-minded governors to create innovative clean energy policy and ensure a stronger national energy future. Joining the Accord reaffirms our commitment to diversifying the Commonwealth’s energy portfolio, supporting new energy technologies, and meeting our goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 25% below 1990 levels by 2020.” Senior advisors to the participating governors will convene shortly to discuss initial steps to pursue their shared priorities and commitments contained in the Accord. Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton said the Accord allows “clean energy leaders to strengthen our economy, protect public health and natural resources, and increase energy security. This new commitment builds on the Commonwealth’s forward-thinking leadership in promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy, and addressing the pressing threat of climate change.” The Baker-Polito Administration has been working to stabilize and reduce the cost of energy for residents and businesses, strengthen the clean energy economy in Massachusetts and help meet greenhouse gas emissions reduction requirements set forth under the Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA). Through the filing of hydropower and solar legislation, the Administration hopes to diversify Massachusetts’ energy portfolio and encourage the development of renewable energy resources. The Administration’s 2016-2018 energy efficiency plan, recently approved by the Department of Public Utilities, sets nation-leading savings levels for both electricity and gas and is estimated to achieve $8 billion in economic, environmental, and energy benefits. The Administration also launched a $10 million Energy Storage Initiative to support the continued growth of renewable power generation and make Massachusetts a national leader in the deployment and effective use of innovative energy technology solutions. Last month, Governor Baker added $2 million in funding to the state’s electric vehicle (EV) rebate program, an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector by increasing the use of zero emission vehicles in Massachusetts. A recent update to Massachusetts’ Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2020 concluded that the Commonwealth is well-positioned to meet, or exceed, a greenhouse gas reduction goal of 25% by 2020 through the full implementation of the Baker-Polito Administration’s energy policies. The Administration’s commitment to action on climate is also demonstrated by signing the Metro Boston Climate Preparedness Commitment, endorsing the Subnational Global Climate Leadership Memorandum of Understanding (Under2MOU) and joining Eastern-Canadian Premieres and New England Governors in signing a climate change resolution calling for a 35-45% greenhouse gas reduction, below 1990 emission levels, by 2030. Click here to access the full text of the Governors’ Accord for a New Energy Future.
Massachusetts Files Economic Development Legislation Providing “Opportunities for All”
The Baker-Polito Administration filed legislation this week entitled An Act to Provide Opportunities for All. The bill outlines investments of up to $918 million in capital funding for local infrastructure, Brownfields site cleanup, Gateway Cities development, development site assembly and site readiness, smart growth housing, workforce development, emerging technologies, and community-based innovation. In broad terms, the legislation seeks to advance job creation and economic growth by empowering communities and regions to reach their potential, expanding workforce development efforts to close the skills gap and connect residents with economic opportunities, and investing in emerging technologies to set the stage for future job growth across the Commonwealth. Read the press release here. Governor Charlie Baker called the legislation “a platform for growth and prosperity across the Commonwealth,” and said, “Strong communities, a highly-trained workforce, and our commitment to welcoming emerging technologies will ensure Massachusetts’ continues to have a pro-growth business environment providing economic opportunities for all.” Lieutenant Governor Polito said, “Community development and revitalization have been priorities of ours since day one, and this bill will provide new investments and tools to enable and leverage private development toward that goal.” Jay Ash, Secretary of Housing and Economic Development, said, “Massachusetts’ greatest asset is its brainpower, and this legislation provides the state’s innovators with the tools they need to create the next generation of jobs in technology and in advanced manufacturing.” An Act to Provide Opportunities for All is organized around four foundational themes: preparing communities for success, a new Massachusetts Innovation Initiative, workforce development, and economic competitiveness.
Governor Baker Announces $83.5 Million for Career Vocational Technical Education
The Baker-Polito Administration is ramping up its support of career vocational technical education, with $83.5 million worth of new initiatives being proposed between the Governor’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 budget recommendation and new capital grant funding. “With too many good-paying jobs going unfilled, we are pleased to announce this critical investment in our career and technical schools,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Our proposal will make it possible for more students to explore a pathway to success through stronger partnerships with our schools and local businesses in the Commonwealth.” The funding in the FY17 budget will be coupled with a substantial capital grant program for vocational equipment that further aligns the administration’s investments with local economic and workforce development needs and employment partnerships: 1.$75 million over five years: new capital authorization to fund grants for equipment to expand and improve career technical education programs, building on a $9.2 million Skills Capital grant program announced this year. 2.$7.5 million: work-based learning grants, including nearly doubling support for school-to-career connecting activities to $5.5 million, and doubling support for Dual Enrollment to $2 million, to expand and replicate STEM-focused early college career pathways, including middle school curriculum and workplace experience and learning. 3.$1 million: new Career Technical Partnership Grants, funded through federal Perkins Act grant funding, to strengthen relationships between vocational schools, comprehensive high schools, and employers. The initiatives have come from the Governor’s Workforce Skills Cabinet, which was created by executive order on February 25, 2015 to align education, workforce and economic development strategies across the state. Governor Baker tapped Education Secretary James Peyser, Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Ronald Walker, II, and Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash, who have been engaging with business leaders and educators around the state to find ways to create partnerships between the employer community, the state workforce system and education in order to open up more job opportunities around the Commonwealth. Governor Baker said the Skills Cabinet is working together “to create an approach and a strategy to skill building and skill development, recognizing that this has an enormous role not just in economic development but human capital development,” adding that this approach provides “a path for people to find a career that works for them.”
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker Delivers State of the Commonwealth Address, January 21, 2016
Governor Charlie Baker gave his first State of the Commonwealth Address on Thursday, January 21, 2016 from the House Chamber of the Massachusetts State House. Here is a written version of Governor’s Baker’s address.
12,000 + Librarians, Publishers and Authors Attend ALA Mid Winter Meeting in Boston
People who care about books, learning and knowledge are alive and well in the world, as evidenced by the American Library Association Mid-Winter Meeting held in Boston last weekend. Over 12,000 librarians, book buyers, authors and publishers attended the industry show, held at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center in the Seaport District. The theme of this year’s meeting – The Conversation Starts Here – refers to the longstanding ability of libraries to transform lives through learning and access to information. “There is no better time than in an election year – when topics such as education, employment and the economy are at the forefront – to communicate the library’s role in fostering individual opportunity and community progress,” noted ALA President Sari Feldman. Numerous librarians, authors and guest speakers talked about the transformative state of the library and publishing world today, with traditional formats like printed materials and nuts-and-bolts library environments embracing the digital age and creating new interactive opportunities to learn. Noted filmmaker Ken Burns, a panelist at the ERT/Booklist Author Forum, said that “libraries have turned into the most important places in my work for the last 40 years.” The delegates took delight in being in Boston, home of the Boston Public Library – the nation’s first free, public library. Many of them took guided tours of the BPL’s facilities and holdings. The Boston Athenaeum, created in 1807 as the first private library in the American colonies, offered an art and architecture tour for the librarians, and so did Houghton Library at Harvard University. A number of Massachusetts publishers were present, including Houghton Mifflin, Candlewick Press, David R. Godine Publisher and MIT Press, along with companies from other parts of the country such as Globe Pequot Press of Connecticut, Rowman & Littlefield of Maryland, and Peachtree Publishers of Georgia. The international book community was represented by the Beijing Book Fair/ China National Publications Group, Elsevier Inc. of Holland and the Frankford Book Fair of Germany. A number of vendors and suppliers exhibited at the meeting, ranging from Infor Library and Information Systems of Framingham, MA, which manages metadata and library services, to Clancy Relocation & Logistics of Patterson, NY, specialists in library relocation and collection management services. Here is a full list of exhibitors. National Library Week is celebrated this year on April 1-16, 2016, during which libraries across Massachusetts will create learning activities, author readings and open houses to promote the value of libraries in the Bay State. You can find more about the state’s libraries by visiting the Massachusetts Library System and Massachusetts Library Association. You can search for libraries by topics or by town here.
Massachusetts Awards $1.5 Million for Advanced Manufacturing Training
(Caption: On December 3, 2015, Governor Charlie Baker announced training program grants at Lynn Vocational Technical Institute.) Photo by Joanne DeCaro Last week, the Baker-Polito Administration announced $1.5 million in Advanced Manufacturing Training Program Workforce Development Grants, aimed to train Massachusetts residents looking for work and connect them with manufacturing companies seeking skilled workers. Governor Charlie Baker made the announcement at the Lynn Vocational Technical Institute, where he was joined by members of his administration’s Workforce Skills Cabinet, along with manufacturing leaders, training specialists and educational organizations. These grants, awarded to 10 workforce development teams across the Commonwealth, provide precision manufacturing training to unemployed and underemployed Massachusetts residents. The training grants target demographic groups that experience chronically higher rates of unemployment, and groups that are historically underrepresented in the manufacturing sector, including veterans, African Americans, Hispanic or Latino Americans, and women. Governor Baker said that Massachusetts “continues to be a national leader in advanced manufacturing, and the sector is an important component of the state’s overall economic health.” He said the grants will “help connect residents to good-paying jobs, while meeting the increasing demand for a skilled manufacturing workforce.” Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito said, “Partnerships between educational institutions and the business community are important for successful workforce training programs. The partnerships demonstrated by these grants will ensure the needs of those looking for work and the manufacturing community are aligned.” The Baker-Polito Administration’s Workforce Skills Cabinet, convened in February 2015, aims to close the skills gap and connect citizens to jobs by making workforce development efforts more employer-centric, and by identifying and bringing to scale successful training and education models. The Workforce Skills Cabinet is coordinating the implementation of the precision manufacturing training grants. The Cabinet is chaired by the Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development, Ronald L. Walker II, and comprised of the Secretary of Education, Jim Peyser, and the Secretary of Housing and Economic Development, Jay Ash. 2015 Advanced Manufacturing Training Program Workforce Development Grant Award Winners Berkshire County Regional Employment Board, Pittsfield Center for Manufacturing Technology, Woburn City of Somerville E-Team Machinist Training Program, Lynn Franklin Hampshire Regional Employment Board, Greenfield Greater New Bedford Workforce Investment Board, New Bedford Massachusetts Manufacturing Extension Partnership, Worcester Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium, Lawrence Regional Employment Board of Hampden County, Springfield Tech Foundry, Springfield
International Diplomats and Trade Officials Tour Western Mass to Explore Partnership Opportunities
(Tour of the Green High Performance Computing Center in Holyoke) This week, the Massachusetts Office of International Trade and Investment (MOITI) led a bus tour of international diplomats and trade officials from 12 countries and regions to explore economic development and entrepreneurship initiatives in Western Massachusetts. The tour took place on Tuesday, November 17, and included stops at Valley Venture Mentors in Springfield, the Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center (MGHPCC) in Holyoke and Yankee Candle Company in South Deerfield. Nam Pham, Assistant Secretary of Business Development, and Katie Stebbins, Assistant Secretary of Innovation, Technology, and Entrepreneurship, led the tour and discussed the Baker-Polito Administration’s initiatives to support job growth, workforce development, and entrepreneurship in Gateway Cities and throughout Western Massachusetts. “It is essential that the benefits of international investment and trade extend across the Commonwealth, and this trip makes the consular corps aware of the great opportunities and workforce readily available in Western Massachusetts,” said Pham. “Massachusetts is a hub of international business and commerce and the entire state has something to offer to the global economy.” “Entrepreneurship does not just exist in Cambridge or Boston, but across the entire Commonwealth,” said Stebbins. “Valley Venture Mentors in Springfield is quickly becoming a regional hub for start-up companies, and this tour is one way to ensure that international entrepreneurs look beyond route 128 when deciding where to launch their business.” “Western Massachusetts holds many opportunities for international firms and investors,” said Rick Sullivan, Executive Director of the Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council, which supported Tuesday’s tour. “We look forward to working with the consular community to welcome more business leaders to the region.” The Consular Corps of Massachusetts consists of 60 career and honorary diplomats who represent their respective countries in the New England region and promote cultural and economic ties. “This tour was a great chance to learn about the region and about economic development and partnership opportunities beyond Boston,” said Ambassador Songjun Ohm, Consul General of the Republic of Korea in Boston. “Our job is to facilitate relations between Massachusetts and our home countries, and this tour was a great chance to expand our network and explore new areas for collaboration,” said Fionnuala Quinlan, Consul General of Ireland in Boston. “This initiative is a helpful way to promote and expand access to the vibrant consular community in Massachusetts and increase international partnerships,” said Hunter Richard, Senior Manager of Business Development at MOITI.
MASSACHUSETTS PROMOTES MANUFACTURING SECTOR IN OCTOBER
Massachusetts celebrates its manufacturing industry throughout October with a series of events and initiatives to support the Commonwealth’s 7,000 manufacturing companies and their 250,000 workers. You can find a full schedule of activities, which includes tours, seminars and open houses, by visiting Amp it up!, the state’s advanced manufacturing program. Among the highlights of Manufacturing Month in Massachusetts. The Baker-Polito Administration proclaimed October 2015 as Manufacturers Month, stating that “Manufacturing is important not only as an economic driver of our state, but also as a key generator of innovation, product development and employment potential.” On Friday, October 2, National Manufacturing Day, the Baker-Polito opened the application process for the Advanced Manufacturing Training Program’s Workforce Development Grants. These grants will fund programs that provide training to unemployed and underemployed individuals, including veterans, minorities and women, for precision manufacturing programs. Here is more information about applying. Governor Charlie Baker said it is important to recognize “the contributions that manufacturing companies and workers make to the well-being, health, safety and prosperity of the Commonwealth and to support the continued growth of this sector by helping to train new workers for available positions.” Jay Ash, Secretary of Housing & Economic Development, said, “Employers frequently tell us that a shortage of skilled workers keeps them from hiring and growing. These training grants will help us connect citizens across the Commonwealth to good-paying jobs, while enabling economic growth.” On Monday, October 5, MassChallenge hosts a MADE@MassChallenge Hardware Startup Showcase which will introduce the manufacturing community to the 2015 MassChallenge hardware startups as well as up-and-coming companies from the Wentworth Institute of Technology. On Friday, October 16, the Massachusetts Export Center holds a briefing on Best Practices for Export Compliance Program Development and Management. It is a must-attend for any manufacturers interested in exporting its products. On Monday, October 26, the Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative and the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium hold a forum to discuss manufacturing issues such as innovation, workforce training and funding. On Wednesday, October 28, the Smaller Business Association of New England (SBANE) hosts the New England Manufacturing Showcase to present the unique products and capabilities of its members. In August 2015, the Baker-Polito administration made two announcements to underscore its ongoing commitment to advancing manufacturing in Massachusetts. The first was a partnership between MIT, Quinsigamond Community College, and the Commonwealth in support of the Integrated Photonics Institute in Manufacturing Innovation. The second was that Massachusetts would be a partner in the nation’s Manufacturing Innovation Institute for Flexible Hybrid Electronics. The partnership includes UMass/Amherst, MIT, UMass/Lowell, Harvard and Northeastern, along with private sector companies. The Manufacturing Innovation Institute is part of the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI), a federal competition sponsored by the US Department of Defense that seeks to advance manufacturing by connecting academic researchers with private firms. Here is more information about Massachusetts’ Advanced Manufacturing Program (AMP it up!).
Massachusetts Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month
(Caption: Participants at the Partners in Transportation Hispanic Month Celebration. Photo Courtesy of Jerry Kelleher, Mass DOT) Massachusetts is celebrating its 27th annual Hispanic Heritage Month September 15-October 15, 2015. This year’s celebrations kicked off on September 14 with an event at the Massachusetts Transportation Building hosted by the Partners in Transportation. Pablo Calderon, Community Outreach Specialist for MassDOT and MBTA, presented a Community Recognition Award to the Veronica Robles Cultural Center in East Boston, which also provided the entertainment in the form of a traditional dance. Jose Masso, Director of Community Relations at Massport and well know radio host of Con Salsa, was the keynote speaker. Other events taking place across the Commonwealth include: September 29 Panel Discussion on the Voting Rights Act and its implication on Latinos, with special guest Daniel Hernandez Joseph, NE Consulate General of Mexico. Federal Reserve Bank, Boston. Hosted by Get Konnected. October 7 Entrepreneurship for All/Emprendimiento para Todos presents Hispanic Month Heritage celebration, featuring Juan Vega, Assistant Secretary for Communities and Programs at EOHED. The Relief’s Inn, Lawrence. October 8 Hanscom Airforce Base in Bedford is celebrating Hispanic Americans: Energizing our Nation’s Divisity all month. On October 8 there is a food tasting event at the Base Chapel, open to the Hanscom community. October 9 El Mundo Hispanic Heritage Month Breakfast, featuring Governor Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh. Revere Hotel, Boston October 9 The Holyoke Latin Jazz Festival features top Latin musicians for a night of music, culture and celebration. War Memorial Auditorium, Holyoke. October 14 Elms College in Chicopee features presentation by Elizabeth Barajas-Roman, CEO, Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts. Find out more about National Hispanic Heritage Month. For more information on immigrant communities in Massachusetts, visit the Office of Refugees and Immigrants.
18TH CENTURY TIME CAPSULE REPRESENTS ICONIC MASSACHUSETTS
Massachusetts is proud of its rich and revered history, as evidenced by the Time Capsule Ceremony taking place at the Massachusetts State House on Wednesday, June 17, 2015. Governor Charlie Baker and Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin, along with state officials, dignitaries, museum archivists, school children and history fans are gathering on the State House lawn to return a time capsule, dating to the 18th century, back in the cornerstone of the building. The capsule contains invaluable items from the early years of our nation: silver and copper coins dating from 1652 to 1855; a silver plaque thought to be engraved by Paul Revere; a copper medal depicting George Washington; 18th century newspapers; and the title page from the Massachusetts Colony Records. It was first placed in the cornerstone back in 1795 by Governor Sam Adams. The only time it saw the light of day was in 1855, when the building foundation needed emergency repairs. Then in 2014, the time capsule was re-discovered during work on the building and taken out of its resting place for inspection at the Museum of Fine Arts. Now it is returning to its coveted spot, where it will lay hidden for future generations to re-discover. The ceremony kicks off at 9:45 a.m. with a procession from Boston Common to the State House featuring the Ancient and Honorable Military Artillery Company of Massachusetts, the 215th Army Band Vocal Quartet, the Grand Lodge of Masons, the famous Clydesdale horses and hundreds of schoolchildren there to see history in the making. The formal ceremony takes place on the State House lawn, starting at around 10 a.m. The event is free and open to the public, and is also being streamed live. Massachusetts has long been one of the most iconic places in America – full of people, places and events that stand the test of time. The time capsule is a proud bearer of the history of Massachusetts and the nation. For more information, visit the Secretary of State web site. To learn more about history in Massachusetts, visit MassVacation.com.
Massachusetts Welcomes Aeromexico direct air service between Boston and Mexico City
This week Massachusetts officials welcomed Aeromexico’s new direct air service between Boston and Mexico City, citing enhanced opportunities in business, tourism and educational exchange between the two places. The new service launched on Monday, June 1, 2015 between Boston’s Logan International Airport and Mexico City’s Aeropuerto Internacional Benito Juarez. Governor Charlie Baker said the new route opens up connections to 16 major cities in Latin America including Buenos Aires, Lima and Bogota, adding “it not only opens doors for business, but it lets our diverse residents and visiting students easily connect to their families.’’ With daily service every day (except Tuesday), Aeromexico flight 699 leaves Boston at 4:20 p.m. and arrives in Mexico City at 8:42 p.m. Flight 698 leaves Mexico City at 9 a.m. and arrives in Boston at 3:05 p.m. The Boeing 737-700 airplanes have 124 seats, including 12 seats in the Aeromexico Clase Premier Business Class cabin. Anko van der Werff, Aeromexico Chief Revenue Officer, called Boston “a city of great importance for Mexico and Latin America because of its global economic potential and extensive academic offerings that draw many students from Mexico and Latin America every year.” Officials said the market between Boston and Mexico City, combined with the airlines’ other 45 destinations in Mexico and Central America, represents over 492,000 passengers and $134M in ticket revenue annually. As a member of the SkyTeam Airline Alliance, Aeromexico partners with Delta and other partner airlines to use Boston Logan International Airport as a gateway to Europe. Massport CEO Thomas P. Glynn said the two cities have much in common. “Like Boston, Mexico City is a place that honors its significant history, it is a cultural and political hub for its people, has a large concentration of universities, and it is a city that celebrates its diversity.” Last year, more than 40,000 Mexicans traveled from Mexico to Massachusetts, according to the U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Office of Travel and Tourism Industries. Patrick Moscaritolo, President and CEO of the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau, said the new service “will mean more visitors and significantly more spending from Mexico and Latin America for our city and for our hotels, restaurant, attractions and retailers.” The local visitor industry could see as much as $54 million in new spending thanks to Aeromexico’s new service. Paula Murphy, Director of the Massachusetts Export Center, says Mexico is currently the Commonwealth’s third largest export partner. In 2014, Massachusetts exported $2.3 billion worth of goods and services to Mexico, while importing $3.6 billion from Mexico. For more information about visiting Massachusetts, go MassVacation.com.
Reflections on Asian-American Heritage Month
(Photo by Jerry Kelleher, MassDOT) by Nam Pham As we celebrate Asian American Heritage month, it is fitting that we praise our high achievers and take satisfaction in their success. That sense of pride is something all of us share – Black, White, Asian, and Latino – about who we are and where we came from. But for me, these celebrations serve a greater purpose: they allow us to reflect upon our communities, to look beyond how far we have come, and focus on how far we still have to go. Those of us who have worked in the trenches, fighting for health care, affordable housing, safe neighborhoods and decent jobs, know how much work remains to be done before we can seriously talk about equality and inclusion in our society. The fact of the matter is that Massachusetts is a state of two economies: one economy for those doing exceedingly well, and the other economy for those who struggle to make ends meet. In national studies on the Income Inequality Gap, Massachusetts ranks 42nd, near the bottom among all US states. From 2009-2011 the top 1% of workers in Massachusetts saw their incomes increase by 26.5%, while the remaining 99% of us saw a decline of 3.1%. Middle and lower income groups experienced a 5.3% decline in income. The Boston Globe reported in March that Boston “has the third highest rate of income inequality among the 50 largest US cities in 2013.” The top five percent of households earned 15 times more than the bottom 20% of households in the state. This disparity affects all of us, but in particular minorities, women and immigrants. These are the groups at the bottom of the income scale. These are the people who work in small businesses and traditional industries like manufacturing. These are the people falling behind because of housing costs, energy costs and transportation costs. And while we are certainly happy that certain parts of our economy are thriving in Massachusetts, we’re just as equally concerned that the majority of the state is not thriving as well. Like Massachusetts’ economy, the Asian American community also has two distinct groups: one is very successful, and one is still struggling to adapt, to adjust and to make ends meet. On one end of the spectrum, we have fully contributing and prosperous US citizens like Japanese-Americans, Indian-Americans, or Taiwanese-Americans. On the other hand, thousands of Cambodians, Laotians and Vietnamese-Americans as a group are at the bottom of the economic ladder. As a Vietnamese immigrant, I am very aware of the challenges faced by many Asian-Americans, especially the immigrant and refugee populations, who are often isolated because of language and cultural differences. It’s not that immigrants don’t want to fit in; they just need help learning how to do so. State and local government can help make that assimilation go smoothly. For example, today there are over 27,000 Asian small businesses in Massachusetts, and yet only about 200 of them have registered on the Massachusetts Supplier Diversity Program, which connects small businesses with government procurement. We need to do a better job connecting all of our citizens with these kinds of opportunities. Another example: despite being the fastest growing immigrant population in the state, Asian-American participation in local elections remains relatively low. Bilingual ballots are an important tool for involving immigrant groups, but we need to do a better job getting newcomers to understand and take seriously their civic responsibilities and the rewards of having a voice in politics. One misconception about Asian-American is that they are all super-achievers, so called ‘model minorities’ who don’t need help because they have it all. They’re thought of as wealthy students, or business travelers shopping at luxury stores and eating in fancy restaurants. But as UMass/Boston Professor Paul Watanabe has pointed out, “Not all Asians are driving BMWs and have higher education.” So I believe that as a society we need to reassess our own biases and prejudices and get beyond them. If you look closely at immigrant communities in Lowell, Springfield, Boston and Quincy, or in any of the Gateway Cities, you can easily see the challenges these communities face. Despite these challenges, which every group faces at one time or another, we continue to march forward, through hard work, determination, and faith that our efforts will be rewarded. If you compare today’s Vietnamese-American community in Dorchester’s Fields Corner to what it was 25 years ago, you can see the marked progress. If you look around Chinatown, formerly known as the Combat Zone, you see progress. But you can also see the work that still needs to be done before we can call our Commonwealth truly equal and inclusive. So when I think of Asian American Heritage Month, I take enormous pride in being a naturalized American citizen and a resident of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. And I take equal pride in my Vietnamese heritage and in being part of the Asian American community. But alongside that pride, I am aware of the continuous work still required on behalf of all of the citizens of this Commonwealth. We may be rich in culture, history and heritage, but poor when it comes to ensuring that everyone in our Commonwealth gets the same opportunities to prosper. As a society, we need to do better. The US is the only place on earth that becomes a country not because of an ancient claim of a piece of land or a royal blood line; we came together because of an idea, the idea of all men are created equal to pursue happiness and justice for all. That is our duty as citizens, as business leaders and as government officials, to make sure that all of us have the same chance to pursue our dreams. (Excerpts from Nam Pham’s keynote lecture entitled ‘Many Cultures, One Voice: Promote Equality and Inclusion,’ delivered to the MBTA’s Partners in Transportation Diversity Committee.)
Congratulations Massachusetts Class of 2015 College Graduates
(Northeastern University 2015 Commencement. Photo by Matthew Modoono/Northeastern University.) It is commencement season in Massachusetts this spring, a joyous time of year for students graduating from any of the 110 public or private colleges and universities in the Commonwealth. Congratulations to the 110,000+ student graduates in the Massachusetts Class of 2015 and to their families and professors too! Massachusetts takes pride in its outstanding colleges and universities, medical centers and research facilities that attract students from around the world as well as local residents. Today, nearly 40% of Massachusetts residents have a college degree, giving it the highest percentage of college graduates in the nation, according to the 2010 U.S. Census. The Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Massachusetts (AICUM) reports that Massachusetts ranks first in the nation in percentage of students graduating from independent colleges in four years. Independent schools have a $25 billion annual economic impact on Massachusetts. In addition to the private colleges, Massachusetts serves about 260,000 students at 29 public schools including 15 community colleges, nine state universities and five University of Massachusetts campuses, according to the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education. Here is a full list of Massachusetts’ public colleges and universities. Commencement season is also an opportunity for society’s leaders and achievers to impart wisdom to the young generation of graduates. Among this year’s commencement speakers: Charlie Baker, Governor of Massachusetts Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology, May 16 Suffolk University, College of Arts & Sciences, May 17 Dr. Bernard A. Harris, Jr., the first African American astronaut to walk in space Worcester Polytechnic University, May 16 Regina McCarthy, Administrator of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency University of Massachusetts/Boston, May 29 Megan Smith, Chief Technology Officer of the United States Massachusetts Institute of Technology, June 5 The influx of proud family members in town for the graduates also provides a welcome bump to the state’s hospitality industry, especially hotels and restaurants but also tourist attractions like museums, sports and cultural venues and gift shops. The Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau (GBCVB) estimates that this year’s graduations draw about 350,000 visitors to the state. The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism has compiled a list of all colleges and universities in Massachusetts, separated by region. You’ll find information about the schools, and also valuable information about local transportation, seasonal activities, and special events that give you a flavor of each school. It’s a great resource for parents making their first trip to Massachusetts to explore potential colleges and universities for their children.
Edward M. Kennedy Institute of the US Senate Offers Lessons in Democracy
Massachusetts, with its own illustrious traditions of politics and government, is poised to tell the distinctive story of American democracy at the newly launched Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the Senate. The non-partisan center of learning was created as a tribute to the late Senator Ted Kennedy, who represented Massachusetts in the U.S. Senator for 47 years. The Institute’s mission is to “educate the public about the important role of the Senate in our government, encourage participatory democracy, invigorate civil discourse, and inspire the next generation of citizens and leaders to engage in the civil life of their communities.” At the Institute’s formal opening on March 30, 2015, the Kennedy family welcomed President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Senators John McCain, Trent Lott, Elizabeth Warren and Edward Markey and other dignitaries from around the world. Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh welcomed the audience, and music was provided by the Boston Pops. See video of the formal dedication. Educators are excited by the Institute’s use of high tech exhibits, including digital tablets that allow students to interact with the procedures that go into making laws, while learning about the important issues of the day. Dr. Bill DeWalt, Executive Vice President and Museum Director, says the Institute will be “a valuable resource for everyone from students to seniors. Our exhibits are designed to appeal to people of all ages, and we will offer a variety of programs, lectures and symposia for adults.” Tourism officials predict that international visitors will make their way to the Institute to learn more about American democracy. DeWalt says the Institute is “offering multiple languages on the digital tablet that guides non-English speakers through the exhibit. Spanish, French, German, Chinese (Mandarin), Japanese, and Portuguese languages will be available initially,” he said. “These translations provide high-level interpretations of the basic content introduced with each exhibit.” Situated at Columbia Point in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood, the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the Senate is located right next to the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum. Together these two institutions will attract visitors from across the country and from around the world, while inspiring students and citizens everywhere to appreciate the importance of public service. For more information about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Dreams of Freedom Exhibit Hails Massachusetts’ Immigrant Story
Massachusetts has a compelling immigrant story to tell about waves of Europeans, Asians and Central and South Americans who have journeyed to the Bay State over the past four centuries, seeking freedom and opportunity. Now, those powerful stories are on proud display at the new Dreams of Freedom: Boston’s Immigrant Experience, a multi-media, educational exhibition set atop the Skywalk Observatory on the 50th floor of the Prudential Tower. Taking in the sweeping vistas of Boston Harbor, Logan International Airport, Boston’s various neighborhoods and even a glimpse of New Hampshire (on a clear day), it’s easy to appreciate the immigrant odyssey as you explore the Dreams of Freedom exhibit. Earlier this month, Exhibit Curator Dr. Westy Egmont welcomed visitors to the Dreams of Freedom opening, and spoke passionately about how Boston’s greatness as a city “grows from, not despite, its role as an immigrant city.” He said the new exhibit can allow new generations of Bostonians and visitors alike to learn about and take pride in the city’s illustrious immigrant story. Egmont was joined at the rostrum by state Senator Linda Dorcena-Forry, who spoke eloquently about her parents, who emigrated from Haiti to Dorchester; and by Pat Moscaritolo, head of the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau, who spoke proudly of his Italian father who raised his family in East Boston, running a family restaurant well into his 80s. The exhibit itself is emotionally powerful, with displays of suitcases and trunks, passports, letters-home and family keepsakes too important to leave behind. And it is historically accurate, thanks to Dr. Kristen A. Petersen, whose research blends together individual stories with ethnic and racial migrations, set against a timeline of US Immigration laws from the 18th century to the present. Officials believe the exhibit will attract visitors from around the world and also be of interest to educators, tour groups and local immigrant organizations. President John F. Kennedy, a native son whose great grandparents emigrated from Ireland in the 1840s, often noted that America is a nation of immigrants. In a similar spirit, Dreams of Freedom proudly shows how Boston and Massachusetts were shaped and made richer by its immigrant communities. For more information about educational offerings or booking a group reservation, call (617) 859-0648 or send email.
Massachusetts Launches Workforce Skills Gap Cabinet
(Caption: HED Secretary Jay Ash,Governor Charlie Baker, LWD Secretary Ron Walker and Education Secretary Jim Peyser) Massachusetts is launching a new initiative to bridge the workforce skills gap across the Commonwealth so that employers can find the type of skilled workers they seeks, today and in the future. This week, Governor Charlie Baker established a Workforce Skills Cabinet, chaired by Ron Walker, the Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development, and comprised of Jim Peyser, Secretary of Education and Jay Ash, Secretary of Housing and Economic Development. “A talented workforce and growing economy are inseparable and Massachusetts has an opportunity to capitalize on both by ensuring our workers have the skills to meet the needs of employers in the 21st century economy,” said Governor Baker in a press release. Since regions across the state have different work skill needs and gaps, one task of the Workforce Skills Cabinet is to develop goals, objectives and metrics that are ultimately implemented region by region. To that end, the Cabinet will recommend to the Governor ways to improve alignment among state policies, programs, resources, job readiness and vocational and educational opportunities. As an example, Baker cited the aerospace industry in the Pioneer Valley, which he said was booming. “They have a thousand jobs or more, open at any given time, for skilled workers. The key word here is ‘skilled’ workers.” The Director of Education and Workforce Development, a jointly funded position in the Executive Office of Education, will be elevated to the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development and coordinate with the Governor’s Office, the Workforce Skills Cabinet, and with external groups. “We need to better connect business to the entire workforce development system which includes workforce investment boards, career centers, community colleges and voc-tech schools,” said Secretary Walker. “The Cabinet will be the vehicle to drive the conversation and action across the three Secretariats to analyze labor needs and expand talent pipelines for the jobs employers need to fill.” The Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM) applauded the new initiative, stating that “The inability to locate and hire skilled employees was by far the top concern expressed by Massachusetts employees last year….The skills issue crosses almost every industry, from manufacturers in the Pioneer Valley to software companies in Boston’s Innovation District to research and engineering firms on the North Shore.” The Workforce Skills Cabinet plans to meet with businesses, schools, government agencies, career centers and job seekers in the coming months, and report back to the Baker-Polito Administration this summer with recommendations.
Massachusetts Senate Conducting “Commonwealth Conversations” in February & March
The Massachusetts Senate has launched a state wide listening tour called Commonwealth Conversations, a series of grassroots forums designed to connect state legislators directly with constituents to hear their ideas, concerns and suggestions. The series kicked off on February 4, 2015 in Western Massachusetts, and continues on Wednesday, February 11 with a public forum in Central Massachusetts being held at 6:30 p.m. at the UMass Medical School – Aaron Lazare Medical Research Building in Worchester. Senate President Stanley C. Rosenberg noted recently that “the best ideas are often found not within these halls but in our neighborhoods and our coffee shops, in our board rooms and union halls, in our office break rooms and at our family tables.” In a video announcing the Commonwealth Conversations, Senate President Rosenberg was joined by Senator Bruce E. Tarr, Minority Leader of the MA Senate, and Senator Michael. J. Rodrigues, Chair of the Commonwealth Conversations. Senator Tarr said, “These forums are part of an effort to make your government even more accessible and responsive to you. State Senators from around the Commonwealth will be listening to what you have to say, and working hard to make sure they carry your voices and your ideas back to Beacon Hill.” “So that’s where your Senators will be over the next few weeks,” Rosenberg continued, “listening to your ideas, and following up on our promise of shared leadership with the people of the Commonwealth.” Here is a schedule of the upcoming forums: February 23 / North Shore February 25 / South Shore March 2 / Metro West March 4 / Metro Boston March 11 / South Coast March 18 / Southeast For more information, visit Commonwealth Conversations web site, and follow on Twitter #MAConvos.
Berklee High School Jazz Festival Deserves its Encore!
Thousands of jazz students from across the United States are streaming into Massachusetts for the 47th annual Berklee High School Jazz Festival, taking place on Saturday, January 31, 2015 at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston’s Back Bay. The festival is free and open to the public. The largest event of its kind in the country, the festival features 200+ jazz bands and over 3,000 students from 13 states and Puerto Rico. They journey here each year to compete for top prizes in categories like Big Bands, Combos and Vocal Jazz Ensembles, plus in individual instrumental competitions. The top ranked ensembles get partial scholarships to Berklee’s prestigious Five Week Summer Performance Program, which tutors jazz musicians from around the world on the finer points of America’s most original music. Berklee College of Music, founded as a music teaching studio in 1945, is considered the premier jazz education university in the world, producing some of the world’s top musicians, composers and producers, and scooping more Grammy Awards than any other institution. The High School Jazz Festival is just one of many programs to cultivate musical, creative and technical skills available in Massachusetts. Along with Berklee, other schools with distinctive music programs include New England Conservatory, Boston Conservatory, Longy School of Music, and the University of Massachusetts campuses at Amherst and Lowell. Here is a list of jazz education programs in Massachusetts. Jazz lovers rightly refer to New Orleans as the birthplace of jazz, and cities like Chicago, Memphis, Nashville, San Francisco and New York all boast great music communities. But Boston is unique in having a vibrant, bustling music scene that is enhanced by the outstanding teaching institutions that draw aspiring musicians from around the world. To find out about live jazz in Massachusetts throughout the year, visit MassJazz.com To the musicians competing at the Berklee High School Jazz Festival this weekend, we say, Encore!
Governor Baker Announces $4 million grant to UMass Lowell for new research collaborative
Governor Charlie Baker announced a $4 million grant from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MassTech) to UMass Lowell to support the school’s new Printed Electronics Research Collaborative (PERC). The four-year grant award, part of the Collaborative Research and Development Matching Grant Program, is being matched by $12 million in industry support. Governor Baker called the grant “another positive step forward for UMass Lowell, students and businesses across the Commonwealth…. By connecting the incredible resources in our universities with the business community, the Commonwealth will continue to stimulate economic growth and create more good-paying jobs.” Printed electronics is an emerging field with the potential to become a $76 billion global market in the next decade, according to a 2014 report by IDTechEx. It has a broad range of applications in fields including health care, telecommunications and renewable energy. UMass Lowell Chancellor Marty Meehan and MassTech CEO Pamela Goldberg joined the governor for the announcement at the Mark and Elisia Saab Emerging Technologies and Innovation Center, an 84,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art research facility on campus where PERC will reside, alongside the Raytheon-UMass Lowell Research Institute. “Our mission is to convene industry, academia and government to catalyze economic opportunity in regions and clusters around the Commonwealth,” said Goldberg. “This project hits the mark on several fronts, including the potential to drive the development of innovative products and business growth.” “Not only does bringing our researchers together with innovators in industry stimulate economic growth, it offers our students unparalleled opportunities for experiential education,” Meehan said. “We are grateful to the Commonwealth for its investment in what we believe will be a model for academic and industry collaboration.” Among the Massachusetts companies that have signed on to participate in PERC are Raytheon, MicroChem, Rogers Corporation, SI2 Technologies and Triton Systems, with more companies expected, according to Julie Chen, Vice Provost for Research UMass Lowell.
Charlie Baker Becomes Governor of Massachusetts on January 8, 2015
(Photo Courtesy of State House News) Charlie Baker was sworn into office as the 72nd Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on Thursday, January 8, 2015. Governor Baker delivered his inaugural address to the joint session of the Massachusetts state legislature at the State House in Boston. Here is the text of Governor Baker’s remarks. Karyn Polito was then sworn in as Lt. Governor of the Commonwealth. Here are Lt. Governor Polito’s remarks. Governor Baker joins an illustrious list of governors from Massachusetts that dates back to John Hancock (1789-1793). Contact the Governor’s Office here, and follow Governor Baker on twitter.
Invention, Innovation & Imagination: JFK’s Space Program Exhibit at Logan Airport
(Photo courtesy of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum) John F. Kennedy continues to inspire. The 35th president of the United States (1961-63) was a proud native son of Massachusetts whose leadership, vision and courage continue to inspire the nation and the world. The U.S. Space Program was one of President Kennedy’s most lasting initiatives and is the focus of a new exhibit aptly titled, “Invention, Innovation and Imagination.” The multimedia installation, a joint collaboration between the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum and the Massachusetts Port Authority, is located at Terminal A at Boston’s Logan International Airport. For history lovers, the exhibit brings to bear the cold war era of the 1960s, when the United States and the Soviet Union were vying to reach the moon first. On May 25, 1961, President Kennedy appealed to the Americans’ spirit of adventure, to patriotic pride, and to the cause of freedom, saying: “I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to earth.” The wall graphics celebrate the innovation economy in New England by highlighting numerous innovations that resulted from the U.S. Space Program. One of the compelling elements is an audio of President Kennedy’s famous speech challenging the nation to put a man on the moon before the end of the 1960s. Heather Campion, CEO of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, said, “Not only did his challenge to Americans and stewardship of the Space Program land a man on the moon in just eight years, but it resulted in several significant scientific advancements that are staples to us today, including GPS, protective firefighting gear and our ability to harness solar energy.” Thomas P. Glynn, CEO of Massport, said the exhibit is part of the airport’s public art program “aimed at stimulating passengers and providing a sense of place. This exhibit reminds us how President Kennedy motivated the nation to push the limits of science and technology. That motivation has continued ever since with great results here in Massachusetts.” This installation is first piece in three-phase collaboration between JFK Library Foundation and Logan Airport. Plans for future installations include visuals designed to encourage children to pursue science and volunteerism, and an installation highlighting President Kennedy’s call for global citizenship. Located in East Boston, Logan Airport is the region’s largest transportation center, generating $7 billion in economic activity each year. The JFK Library & Museum is located at Columbia Point in Dorchester preserves and provides access to historical materials related to President Kennedy and his times. For more about visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com.
Massachusetts Champions New College Campus in City of Brockton
The City of Brockton is about to get a college campus, thanks to the Downtown Brockton Higher Education Collaborative. And that is great news for this proud Gateway City, long known as the City of Champions. Earlier this week, Governor Deval Patrick gathered with state and local officials, educators, businesses and residents to discuss this one-of-a-kind new campus center to be located at 229 Main Street at the corner of Belmont Street. The campus will serve about 1,000 students each year; they will benefit from the educational resources of three state schools: Massasoit Community College (MCC), Bridgewater State University (BSU) and the University of Massachusetts Boston (UMB). Finegold Alexander + Associates is the architectural firm that will convert the long-vacant building into the new college center. The existing building dates back to 1927. The $21.5 million, state-funded project is part of Governor Patrick’s strategy to invest in education, innovation and infrastructure as a way to stimulate economic development. Along with the educational opportunities and access being offered to local residents, the new campus will offer online education materials that use effective and innovative learning technologies. The project itself will create nearly 250 construction jobs and permanent educational jobs. Proponents expect that the new campus will stimulate the revitalization of downtown Brockton, and that small businesses will flourish as a result. It will also increase pedestrians in the downtown area. Funding for the $21.5 million project, which is being spread over five years, was included in Governor Patrick’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 – 2019 Capital Investment Plan. During the Patrick Administration, the Commonwealth completed or has under construction projects at every one of the states’ 29 public campuses. In September, Governor Patrick officially opened a new University of Massachusetts Center in downtown Springfield, designed to expand educational opportunities in the Pioneer Valley. The Patrick Administration has also been committed to closing achievement gaps where they are most persistent. The Governor’s Gateway Cities Education Agenda provides targeted and differentiated support to English Language learners and better prepares high school students for career success. The agenda utilizes tools provided by the 2010 Achievement Gap Act, a sweeping education reform bill that gives educators the resources they need to dramatically improve student outcomes.
Massachusetts and Guangzhou, China Re-establish trade and cultural ties dating back 230 years
by Hunter Richard In August, the Massachusetts Office of International Trade and Investment (MOITI) led a delegation of economic development and cultural leaders from Massachusetts to Guangzhou, China to participate in a celebration and business forum commemorating the 230th Anniversary of the Sailing of the Empress of China. Sponsored by Oceanwide Consulting and the China Zhigong Party, the mission afforded an opportunity to promote Massachusetts as a destination for foreign investment, tour the region’s special development and biotech zones, and strengthen sister-state relations between Massachusetts and Guangdong. Participants included Richard Elam, Executive Director of MOITI, Hunter Richard, Manager of Business Development at MOITI; John Barros, Chief of Economic Development for the City of Boston; Thomas Paine, Vice President of Ager Group Inc. and an Overseer of the Massachusetts Historical Society; Robert Pierce Forbes, a trustee of the Forbes House Museum in Milton and a fifth-generation descendant of China trade Captain Robert Bennet Forbes; and Sherry Dong, President of the Chinese Historical Society of New England. Massachusetts played an important role in Guangzhou’s rise as a major destination for American merchants following the Revolutionary War. On February 22, 1784, the Boston-built Empress of China departed New York and began a 188 day voyage around the world carrying 10,000 pounds of Virginia-grown Ginseng root, Spanish silver dollars, and a 42-man crew. The ship arrived in Guangzhou on August 28, 1784 and established trade and diplomatic relations between the Chinese Empire and the newly formed United States. New England merchants from the ports of Boston, Salem, and others acquired large fortunes from the China trade that flourished at the turn of the 19th century. Today, that fascinating story is highlighted by the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem and the Forbes House Museum in Milton. During the three-day mission, the delegation attended the opening of a new exhibit at the Whampoa Old Fort highlighting the Empress of China and its role in building trade and diplomatic relationship between Guangzhou and the United States. The delegation also toured several historical sites of the city, the Zhujiang New Town development zone, and Guangzhou’s biotech island. After visiting several local companies, members of the delegation discussed the benefits of doing business in Massachusetts in a forum that brought together over 100 local business leaders and investors. Most notable, John Barros and the Mayor of Guangzhou, Chen Jianhua, signed an agreement to boost business and cultural ties between the two cities. MOITI also presented a proclamation signed by the Massachusetts Legislature designating August 28th, 2014 as “Guangzhou, Guangdong – Boston, Massachusetts Day.” Guangzhou is China’s third largest city and is home to over 12 million residents. Located in the Pearl River Delta west of Hong Kong, Guangzhou is a major manufacturing hub that has embraced an ambitious plan to redevelop wide sections of the city, modernize infrastructure, and transition to an advanced economy based on services, biotech, and innovation. The port has played an important role in the China trade, serving as the port of entry for foreign commerce and diplomacy from the 1700’s through World War II. Under Deng Xiaoping’s economic reforms, Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong Province, experienced significant economic growth and a rise of manufacturing of goods for export. In 1983, Governor Michael Dukakis and Governor Liang Lingguang of Guangdong established sister state relations. In an effort to strengthen these ties, MOITI will soon welcome a reverse delegation of business and political leaders from Guangdong in early 2015.
Governor Deval Patrick: Transition of State Government
Governor Deval Patrick unveiled his Transition of State Government initiative with a series of transition videos to help ensure a smooth passage from his administration to Governor-elect Charlie Baker. “Congratulations to the Governor-elect, Lieutenant Governor-elect and their team on winning the election,” Governor Patrick said. “Now it’s time to prepare to govern, and we hope this website will help you and all citizens understand the substance of the work of this Administration as you assume continuing responsibility for it.”
EF Education First Opens North American Headquarters in Cambridge
(Photo Courtesy of Wilson Architects) It’s not every day that political leaders, economic development officials, tourism experts, parks advocates,and educational proponents gather to celebrate a shared enthusiasm, but such was the case this week when EF Education First officially opened its expanded North American headquarters in Cambridge. The Swedish company is a world-wide leader in educational travel and language training, with nearly 1,000 employee based in Massachusetts, and 37,000 people working in 52 countries around the world. Governor Deval Patrick, whose administration has focused on education, innovation and infrastructure as the cornerstones of economic development, told the audience he was thrilled that EF has “chosen the Commonwealth as the place for their continued expansion” in North America. The new headquarters is a public-private partnership success story. Built on land owned by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, the former industrial site on the border of Cambridge and Charlestown was awarded to Education First through a competitive bidding process. The 10-floor, 125 million project consists of 230,000 square feet of office space and 31,000 square feet of public space in the company’s ground floor. It has 16 flexible workspaces on each floor, in line with the new collaborative workspace movement taking place in Massachusetts and elsewhere. The glass exterior building, designed by in-house architect Fiona Kennedy, has an open staircase inside, and features a striking glass waterfall cascading down the façade. The bottom floors house a restaurant with outdoor seating overlooking the Charles River, a bike room and Hubway bicycle station, private showers, a salon and fitness center. “Fostering this type of growth and infrastructure is evidence of how Massachusetts is a leader in economic development.” said Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Greg Bialecki. As part of the project, EF has agreed to maintain and make improvements to portions of North Point Park, a public park overseen by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation. Referring to the new headquarters location, Edward Hult, CEO of EF North America, said, “With new public parks, pedestrian connectivity, and billions of dollars in development activity happening on both sides of the River, it’s clear that what was once referred to as ‘the lost ½-mile of the Charles’ has been found.” Congressman Michael Capuano, who represents Cambridge as part of the Congressional 7th District, said the new facility will increase local access to EF’s many educational programs while adding jobs to the local economy. Student travel is a $30 billion industry, according to Carylann Assante, executive director of the Student & Youth and Travel Association, who told The Boston Globe that EF is one of the largest companies in this lucrative market.
Massachusetts Celebrates Global Diaspora Week, October 12-17
How can immigrant communities in the United States work closely with their respective homelands to create entrepreneurial opportunities that benefit both places? That was the poignant theme of Global Diaspora Week (October 12-17), a national conversation organized by the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Calvert Foundation. Diaspora is from the Greek word διασπορά, and refers to the “movement, migration or scattering of a people from their ancestral homeland.” Over 70 events took place across the nation, including several in Massachusetts, which helped underscore the entrepreneurial spirit, hard work and innovative ideas prevalent in immigrant communities, according to the International Diaspora Engagement Alliance. Local Chinese leaders organized the forum, Entrepreneurship Development and Opportunities for the US Chinese Diaspora at Harvard University. Hosted by the United Cultures Innovation Center for International Cooperation (UCIC) and the Harvard US-China Economic Interaction Council (HUCEIC), the all-day conference drew over 250 entrepreneurs, business leaders, public officials, students and academics for a robust discussion and exchange of ideas. Topics included Translational Medicine in the Genomics Era, US-China Capital Market Relations and Dialogue Opportunities; and Entrepreneurship and Innovation in the Education, Cultural and Tourism Industry. Organizer Xin Li said she hoped the forum would “bring the Chinese community together and let the older generation pass on their experience and wisdom to the next generation” while fostering innovation and creating social engagement. Several state and local officials participated in the conference, including Tackey Chan, State Representative; Rich Elam of the Massachusetts Office of International Trade & Investment (MOITI); Kathleen Newell of the Massachusetts Export Center; and Jolin Zhou of the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau. Local Brazilian leaders Alvaro Lima and Anselmo Cassiano organized a series of four lectures at MIT and Berklee College of Music to discuss Diggai, a new initiative that seeks to aggregate and curate the cultural products of Brazilians around the world. Leading up to Global Diaspora Week, Boston hosted its 6th annual Golden Bridges conference, welcoming a delegation of officials, entrepreneurs and tourism leaders from Northwest Ireland. Drew O’Brien, head of Global Partnerships, was a guest speaker, along with Senate President Therese Murray and Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh. And in September, MOITI welcomed a group from Malaysia seeking to create new business and education partnerships in the Commonwealth. Massachusetts ranks eighth in the nation for newcomers, with an immigrant population that represents over 14 percent of the population. Latino and Asian-owned businesses alone employ over 50,000 Massachusetts residents, with sales of over $7 billion. Immigrants compose nearly 20 percent of the state’s workforce. Governor Deval Patrick declared Immigrant Entrepreneurship Month, June 15 – July 15, 2014, and said, “Our immigrant communities have always been an integral part of our state’s economic and cultural fabric. I am proud to recognize the hard work of our immigrant entrepreneurs who have made Massachusetts home, and whose achievements help keep us in the leadership business.” Massachusetts wants to enable foreign-born, American- educated entrepreneurs to remain in the country after they graduate. The new economic development bill, An Act to Promote Growth and Opportunity, calls for the creation of a Global Entrepreneur in Residence Program to retain and attract entrepreneurs who are growing companies and creating jobs in the state. Administered by the Mass Tech Collaborative, the program will place selected students – who are eligible for H-1B visas but unable to get them due to a federal cap – as “entrepreneurs in residence” at public and private institutions and will ensure that they continue to contribute to the Massachusetts economy. For more about the international investment opportunities in the Commonwealth, visit Massachusetts Office of International Trade & Investment.
Springfield Celebrates Grand Opening of UMASS Center
(Caption: Ribbon Cutting at the Opening of the UMASS Center in Springfield) The City of Springfield was full of pride this week as state and local officials opened the new University of Massachusetts Center at Tower Square. The Center, which represents a partnership between Springfield, MassMutual and Baystate Health Systems, will expand educational opportunity in the City and across the Pioneer Valley Region. Governor Deval Patrick spoke about his Administration’s mission to provide access to higher education in order to create success, wrote the Republican Newspaper. “I feel very, very strongly about the connection between great affordable education and the American Dream,” Patrick told the audience. “We have to make that accessible in every way. We have to make it affordable and we have to make it convenient.” Last May, Governor Patrick announced $5.2 million in funding to complete the construction and furnishings of the Center, which is comprised of 10 instructional rooms, including six regular classrooms, one computer classroom, and three nursing classrooms, a computer lab, breakout rooms, conference rooms and space for student counseling and public events and meetings. The 26,000 square-foot facility is located at the heart of Springfield’s downtown district, and is two blocks from City Hall and the MassMutual Center. The new center significantly expands the University’s presence in Western Massachusetts and unlocks a range of degree opportunities to students of all ages that is tailored to the meet the region’s workforce needs. UMASS President Robert L. Caret said that “The University’ first satellite center has exceeded 300 enrollments on-site as a hub for students pursuing undergraduate and graduate degrees in order to build better lives and better communities.” For the fall 2014 semester, the Center is offering 40 courses across 10 academic programs, including: Nursing, Education, Liberal Arts, Masters of Business Administration, Cyber Security/Network Security, Landscape Architecture and Planning, Architecture, Addiction Counseling, University without Walls (a bachelor’s degree program for nontraditional learners) and seven training programs offered by other community colleges. The University also has a Welcome Center located on the first floor of Tower Square for prospective students. Greg Bialecki, Secretary of Housing and Economic Development, says the new Center will unlock “a range of new educational and job training opportunities needed to fuel our innovation economy,” adding that “the center’s location in the heart of the emerging innovation district enables it to further the economic revitalization of Springfield.”
Highland Street Foundation offers Free Fun Fridays at Massachusetts Cultural Venues This Summer
Baker-Polito Administration Launches Economic Development Planning Council
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Asian Pacific-American Heritage Month in Massachusetts
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