BCC Selected for Project Vision

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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Community College (BCC) is one of just thirteen two-year community colleges nationwide selected for Project Vision, a program supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF)'s Advanced Technological Education program. 
The goal of Project Vision is to catalyze submissions of grant proposals seeking Department of Undergraduate Education (DUE) funding for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) projects.
"Being chosen for Project Vision represents a significant opportunity for BCC. The expertise provided to us through this program will increase our chances of winning extensive funding for exciting projects in the STEM field," said Kierstyn Hunter, BCC Vice President for Academic Affairs. "We're excited to be chosen and honored to receive mentorship from prior successful institutions. We see this as an important springboard from which we can grow our STEM program."
Project Vision is specifically designed to assist rural two-year colleges or colleges with newer presidents. Subject matter experts work with local faculty and staff to create a comfort level in writing grants and looking for growth opportunities, thereby increasing the likelihood of securing major NSF grants.
 Project Vision's mission is to:
  • Provide two-year rural colleges, and/or colleges with newer presidents, the expertise necessary to generate innovative ideas that produce award-worthy NSF proposals.
  • Offer support at all levels of a college ecosystem, including the board of trustees, president, administrators, faculty and staff.
  • Provide professional development activities that embrace the merits of the NSF Advanced Technological Education (ATE) Program and other DUE programs.
  • Provide each college the support needed to build capacity and to regularly submit proposals to the ATE Program and other DUE programs.
  • Lead this initiative by a seasoned team of ATE experts, a former college president/CEO, senior college administrators, and former NSF program officers who help each college promote excellence in STEM education for all students.
For more information about Project Vision, visit www.projectvis.org.

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Lenco Donates Rescue Vehicle to Berkshire Rescue Team

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff

Lenco Vice President Lenny Light, left, BMSAR President Michael Comeau and Lenco design engineer Brian Sears, a BMSAR volunteer. 

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Lenco Armored Vehicles has donated a $20,000 utility terrain rescue vehicle to the volunteer Berkshire Mountain Search and Rescue team after reading of their fundraising efforts on iBerkshires.com.

Team President Michael Comeau said the Polaris UTV will be a huge game-changer for BMSAR, as it will drastically increase the efficiency and the response time to extricate a person from wooded or mountainous terrain and get them to safety.

"All of the team is saying the same thing: 'This is going to so much increase our capabilities for getting to someone, getting equipment to scenes, getting a patient out of the woods or wherever they're in danger," he said.

"And so the membership was really excited to have this."

The four-wheel-drive vehicle features two rows of seats to fit the team members and has an insert in the back that secures a stretcher with a seat for a medic next to it. It also has a light bar for increased visibility and a hook in the front of the vehicle for towing in cases of heavy terrain.

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