Bristol Community College launched its new casino management concentration Friday by cutting the ribbon on the high-tech casino lab located at the BCC Taunton Center in the Silver City Galleria Mall. The ribbon cutting took place in celebration of the BCC CATCH Institute receiving the state’s first Gaming School Certification from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission this past June.

The event featured a speaking portion that included opening and closing remarks from Bristol Community College Chair of the BCC Board of Trustees Joseph Marshall; background about the college’s CATCH program from retired BCC President John J. Sbrega; remarks from Massachusetts Gaming Commissioner Bruce Stebbins; background about the hospitality industry and job market from BCC President Laura L. Douglas; remarks from Massachusetts Speaker pro Tempore of the House of Representatives Patricia A. Haddad, Massachusetts Senator Marc R. Pacheco, and Taunton Mayor Thomas Hoye, Jr.

“We are finding new and innovative ways to meet our students’ needs with degrees and certificates in business, criminal justice, paralegal, EMT, computer information systems and now casino management,” said BCC Board of Trustees Chair Joseph Marshall.

“Preparing a local workforce to meet the demand of casino hiring is central to maximizing economic opportunity and job creation in the Commonwealth. Today’s ribbon cutting exemplifies our steadfast commitment to achieve the Gaming Law’s intent of establishing a highly skilled and diverse workforce for the state’s emerging gaming industry,” said Massachusetts Gaming Commissioner Bruce Stebbins. “BCC’s CATCH Institute will now provide so many students with not only tremendous training in a variety of hospitality employment positions, but beyond that, a strong foundation for a career path and a future filled with opportunity for success.”

Bristol Community College has launched an innovative casino management concentration to prepare students for employment at a casino as part of the college’s highly successful CATCH Institute, a wide-ranging degree program that prepares students for a variety of positions in the gaming and hospitality industries. Students who complete the program receive an associate degree in Applied Science in Hospitality Management with a concentration in Casino Management. In addition to the casino management concentration, the CATCH Institute has concentrations in culinary arts, tourism management, hotel management and events planning and management.

“Students in the Bristol Community College casino management concentration get real-world, practical experience prior to entering this thriving career path. They are well positioned for jobs in a number of hospitality fields, which will lead to even greater opportunities, including the ability to move into management positions and transfer to a bachelor’s degree program,” said BCC President Laura L. Douglas, Ph.D. “BCC is a transformational agent for our economy, and with innovative programs such as those offered in the CATCH Institute, our graduates are positioned for good-paying, sustainable jobs and a successful future.”

Students who choose to focus on the casino management concentration, receive hands-on training during their fourth semester and are required to complete core courses before moving on to specific gaming training courses. An example of these courses includes Introduction to Casino Operations, Casino Loss Prevention, Gaming and Social Policy, and Introduction to Casino Games. The casino lab, located in the BCC Taunton Center at the Silver City Galleria Mall, is authentically outfitted with four felt-topped blackjack tables, two poker tables, custom chips, a surveillance lab, and more. The only exception is that no actual money changes hands. The first three semesters of instruction are conducted at the BCC Fall River Campus.

For more information about Bristol Community College’s CATCH Institute, visit http://www.bristolcc.edu/academics/catchinstitute/

--Bristol Community College release