Bristol Community College

Bristol Community College

Specialized Projects

In addition to the many degree and certificate programs offered at all BCC locations, the New Bedford campus also offers the following specialized programs:

HeadStart to College
HeadStart to College tailors its services to the needs of students who have not attended school in a while, who have obtained a GED, who may be from culturally diverse backgrounds, or the first in their family to attend college. The goal is to increase student success by offering remedial and introductory courses in small class settings and providing academic and student supports that promote growth and confidence. The project offers a free College Success Seminar that prepares students for the challenges they will face in college and a free Career Development and Exploration Seminar that helps students to make well-informed career choices.

ESOL Pathway to College and Careers
This project is geared for ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) learners who have earned their ABE (Adult Basic Education) or GED (General Educational Development) diploma either in their native country or here, and aspire to continue their education. Program highlights include a high level of support, including tutoring and supplemental instruction; assistance with college paperwork; and orientation to the college and its resources. Over a three-semester period, five free college credits are earned through a College Success Seminar, a Career Development and Exploration Seminar, and a Fundamentals of Speech course. In addition, students attend two free non-credit ESOL for College courses. Additional highlights of the project include citizenship counseling and a work readiness module that is offered to the students in collaboration with the Greater New Bedford Career Center.

Pathway to a Career
This three-year project offers free classes in ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages), ABE (Adult Basic Education), and GED (General Educational Development). A unique component to this program is the opportunity for students to choose to receive GED instruction in either English or Spanish and take the GED exam in that same language. New this year (2008) is a self-paced computer laboratory which allows students enrolled in ESOL/ABE/GED classes to receive extra support outside of their regular classroom instruction and work at their own level and at their own pace through an individually designed online curriculum. The lab is also free and open to those in the general community whose schedule does not allow them to come to our structured classes.

Journey Into Education and Teaching (JET)
JET is a free* accelerated bachelor’s degree and teacher preparation program for paraprofessionals who want to become teachers in a high-need school district. Written primarily for paraprofessionals in the SouthCoast districts of Fall River and New Bedford, JET offers the opportunity to obtain Massachusetts teacher licensure in elementary education and moderate disabilities, an area with well-documented teacher shortages. The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth (UMD) has partnered with Bristol Community College (BCC), Lesley University, and the Fall River and New Bedford Public Schools to provide this unique teacher preparation program. Paraprofessionals will obtain their associate’s degree in Elementary Education from BCC and then, through a Joint Admissions program, transfer as a cohort to UMD. There they will earn their Bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts with an elementary education minor. Lesley University faculty will provide the Special Education (SPED) licensure requirements in an integrated instructional module. Features of this cohort model program include: eLearning and weekend courses; free MTEL prep; and a New Teacher Mentoring program upon completion of teacher licensure. * Based on acceptance to the Massachusetts Teacher Preparation Grant

BCC/New Bedford Public Schools (NBPS) Partnership
Through this project, New Bedford Public School paraprofessionals are given a number of professional development opportunities. These include free ParaPro Assessment test prep workshops and testing for newly hired paraprofessionals to meet federal requirements; free college courses for those who want to work toward an associate’s degree; advisement for those pursuing teacher licensure through the Massachusetts Teacher Preparation Grant; and professional development activities on NBPS system-wide professional development days.

Women in Successful Environments (WISE) Women
The WISE Women project is a collaborative effort among Bristol Community College, the State Department for Transitional Assistance (DTA), the Massachusetts Community College Executive Office, and The Women’s Fund of Southeastern Massachusetts. The project is designed to ensure that economically challenged women of the Greater New Bedford community have the opportunity for self-sufficiency. Through a rigorous set of academic and training modules each participant receives the necessary skills to secure employment and continue their education on a career path toward a college degree. The model is based on a well-planned continuum of services leading participants through personal development; content-specific curriculum including up to twelve free college credits; job training; job placement; follow-up support; and continuous assistance in their respective certificate and degree programs to further enhance their careers/employment opportunities.

Brownfields Environmental Career Path
This project is designed to provide economically challenged residents of Brownfield Communites within Greater New Bedford an opportunity to receive industry-based training in brownfields remediation and other environmental fields. Training will be provided at the BCC New Bedford campus, allowing access to the full range of the College’s support services and providing an ideal context for student success, which includes a strong environmental education and training curriculum, tutoring, advisement/mentoring, and assistance with job searches. Based on a cohort model, students in the Brownfields Environmental Career Path will participate as a group in the majority of program activities. This approach is designed to enhance the peer support among the students in the program in an effort to foster deeper engagement and retention. By completing one of two academic and training tracks, participants will learn the skills necessary to prepare them for employment in the brownfields remediation sector and provide them with options to build a career in fields such as air quality; emergency preparedness and response; energy technologies and services; environmental lab services; safety and health; solid and hazardous waste management; water supply and quality; and sustainability. Eligible participants must be 18 years of age or older; a US citizen or resident alien and able to work in the US; resident of a designated Greater New Bedford Brownfield Community; hold a high school diploma or GED; hold or be able to obtain a valid MA driver’s license; own or have access to a motor vehicle or reliable public transportation; be drug free; and have no serious CORI issues.

Youth Earning and Learning Project
This project links a four day/week work experience with the City of New Bedford with a one day/week interactive work-readiness skill attainment experience at BCC. The model offers 14 to 24 year olds participating in the Summer Youth Jobs program a plan that enables them to earn college credits while achieving work-readiness and career development skills linked directly to their summer work experience placement. Youth Earning and Learning will provide an experience modeled on highly effective “middle college” approaches that are designed to motivate and engage youth who have become discouraged with the traditional high school learning environment. Youth Earning and Learning will help project participants learn how to succeed in an educational setting under the guidance of a team of instructors and student support specialists with experience and interest with at-risk youth. In their summer term, participants will learn in a cohort experience that builds their academic, work and personal skills, preparing them for college courses with the general student population. Through their work experiences with the City of New Bedford and their weekly participation at BCC, the youth will gain work-relevant skills in reading, writing, and math; develop a personal/career plan to help focus their academic and career goals; master job preparation/job search techniques; acquire valued work habits and learn how to be an effective worker through their work-based learning experience. They will receive from 1-3 college credits for their participation and improve academic and personal readiness for college.

Re-Entry Project
This project is designed to ensure that ex-offenders from area correctional facilities are given the educational and personal skills necessary to have the opportunity for self-sufficiency and reduce their chances of recidivism. Through a comprehensive case management model and a rigorous set of academic and training modules, participants receive the necessary skills to secure employment and continue their education on a career path toward a college degree. The model is based on a well planned continuum of services leading the individual through personal development; content-specific curriculum; job readiness training; and continuous assistance in their respective certificate and/or degree program to further enhance their career/employment opportunities. Participants are transferred to the Greater New Bedford Career Center for job placement; follow up support; and ongoing monitoring. Work-based learning opportunities are a highlight of the project allowing motivated employers to provide learners to provide learners with internships offering a learning component for students while giving employers the chance to test the work habits and ethics of potential employees. Requirements for participating in this project include a desire for learning and furthering your education; a desire to work in the construction field; a strong desire to participate in this specific program; a stable support system including a permanent address; having maintained a strong degree of sobriety, managed substance abuse; have minimum distractions; have a state issued ID; and are enrolled in Mass Health.

Middle College-Courses to Careers
Middle College-Courses to Careers offers 16 to 21 year olds, who have dropped out of school or are at risk of dropping out, a plan that enables them to continue earning a high school diploma while achieving college credits. The model targets the disinterested and/or under-prepared students from the Greater New Bedford community and provides incentives for them to return to school and prepare for high skilled jobs. Middle College-Courses to Careers helps participants learn how to succeed in an educational setting under the guidance of a team of instructors and student support specialists with experience and interest in at-risk youth. The grant started in March 2009 with the recruitment phase. Staff worked with the following programs in the Greater New Bedford area to recruit students: the Twilight Program at New Bedford High School, New Bedford High School, Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School, North Star Program (Drug Court), Brick by Brick Program, Youth Build New Bedford, and My-Turn. Students in the Spring semester were enrolled in General Psychology. A Supplemental Instruction Tutor attended each class with the participants and was available during and after class for support. This component added a great deal to the success of the participants. The project is currently enrolling students for the Summer semester. For Summer, students are registering for Fundamentals of Public Speaking and College Success Seminar.