Massachusetts Ranks Fourth in Protecting Animals

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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — We know Berkshirites love their dogs so it's not surprising Massachusetts does right by animals.

The Humane Society of the United States has ranked Massachusetts No. 4, tied with Illinios, on how it treats animals.

"Massachusetts has a proud history of animal protection. The commonwealth was the first state in America to pass animal cruelty legislation. We hope that the current state legislature will continue to lead the nation when it comes to animal protection by joining the eight other states that passed farm animal welfare reforms in recent years," said Alexis Fox, Massachusetts state director for the Humane Society of the United States.

The MSPCA, the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, was founded in 1868.

The third annual Humane State Rankings rated all 50 states and Washington, D.C., on a wide range of animal protection laws, including animal cruelty codes, equine protection standards, wildlife issues, animals in research and farm animal policy.

Earning the highest scores were California in first and New Jersey and Oregon tied for second place. South Dakota was last with score of 8 out of a possible 66 with Idaho in 50th. Idaho, North Dakota and South Dakota received especially low marks in part because they are the only three states in the country with no felony penalty for egregious acts of animal cruelty.

To see the complete 2011 Humane State Rankings, click here.

Tags: domestic animals,   pets,   

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BCC, Sonoco Partner in Mechatronics Apprenticeship Program

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Community College (BCC) and Sonoco Plastics have entered into a partnership to encourage those interested in a career in mechatronics to apply for an apprenticeship at Sonoco. 
Apprentices will receive full tuition at BCC for its associate degree in mechatronics program, provided they complete the apprenticeship. 
Mechatronics is a growing field that combines technologies of mechanics and electronics. An interdisciplinary field of study, it encompasses sought-after skills in electro-mechanical systems, machine operation, computing, automation, robotics and advanced manufacturing. Mechatronics bridges traditional machine operation and 21st-century smart devices, positioning graduates for rewarding careers in fields such as automation and manufacturing. 
 "We are excited to launch this earn-while-you-learn opportunity. Students are paid employees, tuition is covered, college and hands-on industry training complement each other, and employment after graduation is secured," said Frank Schickor, BCC Dean of STEM and Allied Health. "We are grateful to Sonoco for joining this educational partnership." 
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