NEW BEDFORD — The Baker-Polito Administration Wednesday awarded New Bedford High School $30,000 as part of the state’s Innovation Pathway Planning Grant program. The High School will use these funds to plan for the implementation of a marine program connected to the industry sectors of advanced manufacturing and the life sciences.

The innovation pathway will be integrated into its Career Vocational Technical Education program. The award was announced as part of Governor Charlie Baker’s and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito’s recent visit to Lawrence High School in Lawrence. New Bedford High School was among 21 other high schools who were grant recipients.

Innovation Pathway Planning Grants are designed to support schools in the creation of a pathway of coursework and workplace experiences in a high demand industry. New Bedford High School will use funds to engage in a rigorous planning process that will involve staff, as well as industry partners to develop curriculum that will integrate vocational technical training in marine manufacturing, and academic content focused on the life sciences, including marine biology. Students will receive training for careers in the maritime industry and will obtain applicable skills in advanced manufacturing, welding and diesel engine technology.

Additionally, each student will develop a career plan with targeted post-graduation goals and will have the opportunity to participate in an internship with a marine industry partner. According to MassHire Greater New Bedford’s Regional Blueprint, the maritime industry is identified as an emerging sector as a part of the South Coast’s Blue Economy.

“We are excited to begin the planning process for NBHS to have a viable marine program,” said Bernadette Coelho, headmaster of New Bedford High School. “Our students have excelled in our career training programs, and marine technology will provide them compelling new academic and vocational opportunities. We are proud to be one of a select few of high schools who have been awarded this planning grant and appreciate Governor Baker’s support of our students.”

The innovation pathway planning compliments New Bedford High School’s growth in career technical education and its commitment to fostering new vocational programming and supplementing its existing technical training offerings – all of which are designed to offer exciting and varied learning experiences. For example, this past spring, career vocational students constructed a 15-foot boat in concert with New Bedford’s Community Boating Center.

“Marine Technology is emerging as a high demand career area, and our planning grant will be targeted toward shaping a maritime program that will meet this demand”, said Christopher Cummings, Manager of New Bedford’s Career Vocational Technical Education program, who noted that the laboratory will support new linkages with post-secondary institutions to provide credentialing pathways in marine. “The city of New Bedford has a rich marine industry history dating back to the 19th century, and we intend to support its 21st century revitalization by providing viable career pathways in the sector.”

New Bedford High School’s Career Vocational Technical Education program offers career pathway programs in Finance, Instructional Technology, Health Sciences, Engineering, Early Childhood Education, and Hospitality. For more information about Career and Technical Education at New Bedford High School, please contact Christopher Cummings, Manager of CVTE at (508) 997-4511, ext. 20799.

— New Bedford Public Schools

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