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Mount Greylock School Committee Discusses Williamstown's Cannabis Bylaw Proposal
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:39AM / Tuesday, May 18, 2021
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock School Committee on Thursday declined to take a formal stand on two issues that have cropped up in one of the district's member towns this spring.   The committee did discuss a zoning bylaw amendment to regulate the production of cannabis in Williamstown and a special permit application pending with the Zoning Board of Appeals to erect a cellular tower on a property adjacent to the middle-high school campus.   But although committee members expressed reservations about the possibility of outdoor marijuana plantations or cell towers near Mount Greylock Regional School, the panel rejected the idea of a formal motion recommending

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MCLA Student Receives 29 Who Shine Award
12:49PM / Monday, May 17, 2021
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. —Shelby Dempsey '21 has been chosen as MCLA's recipient of the Commonwealth's "29 Who Shine" award, which recognizes 29 outstanding graduates from the state higher education system.    Governor Charlie Baker will recognize Dempsey and 28 other students during a virtual YouTube Live ceremony on May 13 at 2 p.m. held by the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education (DHE).     "Her work provided critical support for her fellow students to allow them to continue their studies despite the challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic," said MCLA Dean of Academic Affairs Ely Janis.     According to a

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Mount Greylock Superintendent Explains Diversity Initiative, Responds to Criticism
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
12:46AM / Monday, May 17, 2021
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional Schools superintendent Thursday gave a detailed explanation of the opening stages of his diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging initiative and responded to community members who have been critical of his approach to the issue.   "The real part of this work is working to better understand and know ourselves and to know those with whom we share our community and our county and our commonwealth and our world," Jake McCandless told the School Committee at its monthly meeting.   "We are always with our students and within ourselves working to build a greater empathy and understanding of not only ourselves but

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BCC to Hold Pinning Ceremony for Physical Therapist Assistants
12:00PM / Friday, May 14, 2021
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Community College (BCC) will hold the Class of 2021 Physical Therapist Assistant Pinning Ceremony on Thursday, May 27 at 6 pm.   The ceremony will be held in the Connector (between Hawthorne and Melville Halls) at BCC.    The Pinning Ceremony, which honors physical therapist assistant (PTA) students who have successfully completed all requirements of the program, marks the entrance of these students into the professional field of physical therapy.     While the event is open only to BCC faculty, administration, and students involved in the ceremony, it will be recorded live by local Pittsfield television station PCTV and

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MCLA Receives Grant from National Endowment for the Arts
03:52PM / Thursday, May 13, 2021
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — MCLA's Berkshire Cultural Resource Center (BCRC) has been approved for a $20,000 Grants for Arts Projects award to support the MCLA Institute for the Dismantling of Racism.    This project will educate and support staff members of historically White art institutions in creating and implementing an anti-racist agenda within the arts, one person at a time. BCRC's project is among the more than 1,100 projects across America, totaling nearly $27 million, that were selected during this second round of Grants for Arts Projects fiscal year 2021 funding.    "As the country and the arts sector begin to imagine returning to a post-pandemic

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MCLA Food Pantry Receives $3,000 Grant from James and Robert Hardman Fund
07:57AM / Thursday, May 13, 2021
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NORTH ADAMS, MASS.—The MCLA Food Pantry has received a $3,000 grant from the James and Robert Hardman Fund of the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation.     The Hardman Fund grant will support the diversification of the food pantry's offerings, including the addition of more fresh and perishable food items, one of the pantry's longtime goals. The pantry will also purchase carts so guests can pick up pre-packaged meals and supplies outside the pantry. Funds will also be used to hire student employees to take inventory and maintain the pantry's physical space, as well as work on its resource page which launched this spring on MCLA's curriculum software

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Berkshire Colleges Receive $12M in American Rescue Plan Funds
12:24PM / Wednesday, May 12, 2021
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BOSTON. — Berkshire Community College, Williams College, and the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts will receive more than $12 million in American Rescue Plan Funds.   On Tuesday, U.S Rep. Richard Neal announced that Berkshire Community College, Williams College, and Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts will all receive a slice of the nearly $90 million in emergency funding for colleges, universities, and students in Massachusetts' First Congressional District under the American Rescue Plan.   "The success of our local colleges and universities is critical to the success of our students and to the strength of our community," said Neal in a press

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MCLA Innovation & Entrepreneurship Challenge Announces Three Winners
03:47PM / Monday, May 10, 2021
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The MCLA Innovation & Entrepreneurship Challenge, held virtually from May 3–May 7, 2021, saw the College community come together to view and vote for three winning pitches.    The finalists, who pitched their business ideas via video, were Lorenzo Cristofolini '21, Cristo's Consulting; Jake Ferrara '21, Ferrara Lawn Care; Latisha Hargrett '21, Strong Shoulders; Austin Miller '21, Get Hooked Bait & Tackle; and Andrew Nygard '21, Wheels Now!   MCLA President James F. Birge announced the winners in a video on Friday, May 7. Austin Miller's Get Hooked Bait & Tackle won first place, which came with a $7,500

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BCC Announces Virtual Info Sessions for Criminal Justice and Human Services Programs
08:08AM / Friday, May 07, 2021
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Community College (BCC) will hold a virtual open house session for Criminal Justice and Human Services programs on Wednesday, May 19 at 4:30 pm.    Current and prospective students can register for the Zoom session by visiting www.berkshirecc.edu/openhouse and scrolling down to the "Program Info Sessions" section.   The program will begin with opening remarks from Dr. Laurie Gordy, Dean of the Humanities and Behavioral & Social Sciences Division. Dr. Gordy will then introduce program advisors and faculty from both programs, who will present program overviews discussing courses, program requirements and workload, and transfer

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Pittsfield Officials Pick Taconic Grad for Empty School Committee Seat
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
08:06PM / Wednesday, May 05, 2021
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — In a joint meeting of the School Committee and the City Council, Nyanna Slaughter was unanimously voted to serve the rest of former member School Committee member Dennis Powell's term expiring at the end of December.

Powell abruptly resigned last month over committee's choice for superintendent. 

Slaughter is the Central Massachusetts regional director for U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren and as a Pittsfield native has "strong relationships with several children, families, elected officials, and community leaders in the city."

"I am a Black educated woman who is a confident, passionate, determined, organized leader and team

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