State Science Grants Benefit 4Cs, Sturgis

Cape Cod Community College will get new science labs and Sturgis Charter Public School will get new science equipment out of almost one million dollars in state grant funds coming to schools in the region.

The money comes from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, an investment agency that the governor has tasked with implementing a 10-year, $1 billion state-funded investment initiative.

Susan Windham-Bannister, President and CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, said during a ceremony announcing the grants earlier today, “The life sciences are now the fastest job producers in Massachusetts so a key strategy of the Life Sciences Center is to use our capital dollars to ensure that students all across the Commonwealth are prepared to compete successfully for these jobs.”

She said, Cape Cod Community College and the seven high schools that received grants, “play major roles in training the next generation of our state’s life sciences workforce in this region.”

The ceremony took place in the Lyndon P. Lorusso Applied Technology Building on the college’s West Barnstable campus.

State Senate President Therese Murray (D-Plymouth) said she toured the science labs at Cape Cod Community College this winter and was shocked that the science labs had not been upgraded since the 1970s when they were first built.


 “Representatives from schools across the region who received major grants to pay for upgrades at science facilities pose with State Senate President Therese Murray at a grants ceremony April 14 in the solarium of the Lyndon P. Lorusso Applied Technology Building.”

“To preserve our status as a national leader, it’s critical that we continue to invest in our top emerging industries such as e-health, biotechnology and life sciences which fuel our innovation economy here in the Commonwealth.”

Cape Cod Community College received $395,485 to help upgrade equipment in the college’s biology and chemistry lab. College President John Cox said matching funds the college will raise from private sources will also be used toward the upgrade. He said the grant “recognizes the college’s commitment to excellence in education.”

Most of the college’s lab equipment is outdated and is no longer functional, according to Angus McQuilken of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center.

Dr. Cox said the facilities are used by an average of 900 to 1,100 students each year.

Sturgis Charter Public School Executive Director Eric Hieser said the school’s project team views the grant as “providing real world relevant experiences in our high school labs.” Sturgis received a $100,000 grant.

 “Eric Hieser, executive director of Sturgis Charter Public School, speaks about the strong science program Sturgis has thanks to state grants.”

The following high schools also received grants: Bristol County Agricultural High School ($70,038); Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School ($99,836); Martha’s Vineyard Public Charter School ($150,000); New Bedford High School ($92,000), Old Colony Regional Vocational Technical High School ($99,854); and South Shore Vocational Technical High School ($79,287).
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