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Q&A With MCLA President James Birge

Originally called the North Adams Normal School, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts was founded to train public school teachers. True to that heritage, today's MCLA faculty members take seriously their role as educators. That is the message the college's 12th president received when he arrived on campus earlier this year.

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Berkshire STEM Network Snags $65,000 State Grant

This regional award will support Berkshire County and the Pioneer Valley. As the lead partner of the Berkshire STEM Network, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts will continue to collaborate with education, community and industry partners across the region.

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MCLA Summer Undergraduate Research Institute Underway

This year's participants include Andrea Fachini, Class of 2017, and Daniel Heinen, Class of 2018, both of whom are biology majors at MCLA. They are working on research related to endosymbiont bacteria from sea anemones and an augmented virtual reality laboratory simulation, respectively.

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MCLA Admissions to Offer Information Sessions

Participants will learn more about MCLA’s more than 50 programs of study, including those in the arts, athletic training, education, business, the sciences, technology and many more.

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MCLA Adds Biochemistry Concentration to STEM Lineup

According to Dr. Carolyn Dehner, assistant professor of chemistry at MCLA, biochemistry gets to the heart of how living things work and is an important pedagogical tool for students to use as they discover new things about the natural world.

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MCLA Hosts Third 413 STEM Academy

The 21 students who will participate – six from Berkshire Community College, seven from Greenfield Community College and eight from Holyoke Community College – intend to major in fields that include biochemistry, biology, biological science, biotechnology, computer science, environmental science, mathematics, nursing and wildlife ecology/conservation.

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MCLA Names New Vice President for Institutional Advancement

Hastings grew up in Williamstown. That experience provides her with years of perspective into the college’s growth over the years. The accolades that MCLA has received in recent years, she said, put the college in an excellent position for further development and recognition.

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Grant Helps College Students Bring Science to Kids

Entering the third year of a four-year grant, undergraduates from MCLA and Williams College have worked with both elementary teachers and college science professors to develop inquiry-based units of instruction based on the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in a program called “Teaching to Learn.”

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MCLA, BCC Offer Summer Program to Aid Transition to College

This pilot program, directed toward newly graduated high school students from Pittsfield and northern Berkshire County, will include two Commonwealth Dual Enrollment Program academic courses, which will prepare them to attend MCLA or BCC this fall.

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MCLA Professor Joins WGBH, NASA in STEM Education Effort

Over the next five years, the education team at Boston public media producer WGBH will receive approximately $10 million from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to develop new STEM instructional models and digital media tools.

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MCLA to Offer Violin Repair Workshops

The workshops will include “Introduction to Proper Violin Set-Up” June 6-10, “Tonal Improvements” June 13-17, “Fitting New Upper and Lower Block June 20-24, and “Crack Repair and Crack Reinforcements” June 27-July 1.

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United Way Funds MCLA Writing Camp Scholarships

The deadline to apply for a scholarship is Monday, June 6. The funding will pay for two scholarships for youth with limited financial means, who are residents of Northern Berkshire County.

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MCLA Hosts Youth Summer Camps, Sports Clinics

These programs include a creative writing camp, a science and robotics camp, an advanced robotics camp, volleyball and basketball sports clinics, and the “Young Hacks Academy,” a blend of computer programming problem solving and teamwork.

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MCLA Signs Agreement with WNEU School of Law

With this agreement, signed Tuesday by MCLA President James F. Birge, WNEU Provost Linda Jones and WNEU School of Law Dean Eric Gouvin, qualified undergraduates at MCLA may substitute the first year at the law school for their senior year at MCLA. As a result, they may earn their bachelor’s degree and juris doctor degree in six years instead of the typical seven.

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MCLA Gallery 51 Seeks Camera Phone Photo Show Submissions

A collaborative group project of MCLA and Brigham Young University (BYU) in Provo, Utah, “Waiting” will include more than 1,000 photographs, which will be selected for exhibit in MCLA Gallery 51.

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Letter: MCLA Campus Garden Gone Without Explanation

Spring is here. Sadly, the MCLA Campus Garden, formerly located next to Smith House, is gone. In late August of 2015, the vegetables and flowers were pulled out, the native perennial shrubs and ancient flowering cherry dug up, the bird bath and stone bench memorials removed, and the entire area planted with grass seed. What was once a diverse ecosystem is now just a lawn.

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Barrett, Gold Named to MCLA Board of Trustees

Former North Adams John Barrett III has been named as a trustee of Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts. Gov. Charlie Baker approved Barrett's appointment and the reappointment of Susan Gold, who has served on the Board since 2010. Both will serve five-year terms.

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MCLA Picks Alumnus & Former Leader as Commencement Speaker

Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts will celebrate its 117th commencement exercises on Saturday, May 14, beginning at 11 a.m., in the Amsler Campus Center Gymnasium.

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Volunteers Needed for 23rd Annual MLK Day of Service

The program will include the presentation of this year's MLK Peacemaker Award to PopCares Inc., in recognition of the difference the nonprofit organization makes in the lives of more than 310 local families who are battling cancer.

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MCLA Welcomes New VP of Administration and Finance

Behan comes to campus with more than 20 years of executive-level administration, as well as finance, information technology and operational expertise at a variety of organizations in both the private sector and state government

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MCLA Trustees Select James Birge as 12th President

"I know no matter which candidate advances tonight, we will stand behind him as a board and a campus."

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MCLA Students Identify Qualities in College Presidential Candidates

"I think the biggest thing is the ability to compare each candidate." — Alexandra Kadell

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MCLA Offers New Option for Transfer Students From New York State

The New York Transfer Program provides guaranteed admission, as well as a reduced cost of attendance for students looking to enroll at MCLA.

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MCLA Narrows Presidential Search Field to Two Candidates

The trustees will next meet on Thursday, Dec. 10, at 5 p.m. in Murdock Hall room 218 to further discuss these candidates and to vote on whom to recommend to the Board of Higher Education as the next president of MCLA.

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MCLA Recognizes Adams Scholarship Awardees

"The beauty of a liberal arts education is that we're going to teach you a little bit of everything." — James Clemmer

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