Regional education, business leaders discuss the Innovation Pathways program
On October 25, local education and business leaders joined government officials for a tour and roundtable discussion on advanced manufacturing innovation pathways programs and their impact on economic and social development. the workforce in north-central Massachusetts.
Held at Fitchburg High School, the event provided an opportunity for regional stakeholders to examine the benefits of innovation pathways and chart the way forward for future funding opportunities. Attendees included Clinton Public Schools Superintendent Steven Meyer, Clinton High School Principal Scott Czermak, Nashoba Regional School District Superintendent Kirk Downing, Berlin-Boylston Regional School District Deputy Superintendent Carol Costello, Guardian in Literacy of the Berlin-Boylston Regional School District, Jessica Gallagher and The Human Resources Generalist of Jabil Healthcare, Malik Parks Sr.
“The best investment we can make in our youth is to commit to developing these programs. Government, schools and private industry are working together to equip young people with the skills needed to access well-paying jobs in the advanced manufacturing sector which is key to North Central’s future, ”said Sen. John Cronin State. “For students, it’s a passport to the middle class. Bridges allow children to enter 21st century careers with high wages, build their futures, and ultimately stay and raise a family here in North Central. For the region, we are providing the workforce it needs to ensure 21st century businesses thrive here and fuel our economy and our commercial tax base. These lanes are a rising tide to lift all boats.
Innovation Pathway programs pair high schools with local industry to provide students with career-oriented training and work experience in a variety of high-demand industries. The programs are designed to expose students to career options while helping them develop the necessary industry-specific knowledge and skills prior to graduation.
The October 25 event showcased advanced manufacturing programs, which have been at the center of the concerns of educators, industry and regional lawmakers.
The event focused on the successes and challenges of the Innovation Pathway programs and included a panel discussion and a tour of several advanced manufacturing classrooms. The discussion largely focused on the sources of funding needed to implement and maintain these programs now and in the future.
Participants were invited to see the workshops firsthand and to speak with students and teachers directly involved in the program.
“I was delighted to join my colleagues and regional stakeholders to find out how we can create pathways and opportunities for our students in the manufacturing sector,” said State Representative Meghan Kilcoyne. “Along with stakeholders from Clinton Public Schools, Nashoba Regional School District and Berlin-Boylston Regional School District as well as employer Jabil Healthcare from 12th District of Worcester, I am excited about the prospect of growing this part of our economy. region and help our schools to foster the future of our students here.