Governor Deval Patrick announced on Tuesday, September 6th the recipients of $2.5 million in funding through the Performance Incentive Fund (PIF), a competitive grant program designed to spur innovation in higher education settings. As part of the PIF, Berkshire Community College (BCC) received $131,088 which will be used to 1) redesign the institution's Student Success course, which assists developmental students with the transition into college and 2) redesign the institution's developmental math curriculum.
Through this program, eighteen Massachusetts public colleges and universities across the Commonwealth will receive state funding to supplement their base budgets to spur innovative programs and reward campus efforts to improve educational outcomes.
"The innovative strategies that will be advanced through these grants demonstrate our commitment to provide all students with access to a world-class education," said Governor Patrick during the announcement. "Today we are making an investment in our campuses that will increase opportunities for students and strengthen our workforce, leaving a better Commonwealth for generations to come."
"Our students face many personal and academic challenges; embedding strategies for success into college courses increases college completion. Similarly, almost all or our students struggle to achieve quantitative literacy," said Dr. Frances Feinerman, Vice President for Academic Affairs. "Once students work their way through math remediation, as most of our students must, they are on their way to a college degree. We're concentrating on projects that will have maximum impact on college completion."
The Performance Incentive Fund is a cornerstone of the Vision Project, the state's master plan to establish the Commonwealth's system of public higher education as a national leader in educating students to be productive workers and engaged citizens. The "vision" at the heart of the Vision Project is that Massachusetts needs the best educated citizenry and workforce in the nation and that it is the job of public higher education to achieve the result.