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    1. So what is a college degree worth?

      So what is a college degree worth?

      So what is a college degree worth? The answer depends on whom you ask.

      Fewer than half of the adults surveyed in a Gallup Poll earlier this year had “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in the nation’s college and universities. When business executives and hiring managers were asked the question this past spring by Hart Research Associates on behalf of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, in a recently released survey funded by Newman’s Own Foundation, the answer was a world apart: 63 percent expressed quite a lot or a great deal of ...

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    2. Community Bank reopens renovated Tower Square office in Springfield

      Community Bank reopens renovated Tower Square office in Springfield

      Community Bank cut a ceremonial ribbon Thursday to mark a renovation of its offices in the Tower Square retail mall, and announced $12,500 in donations to three local groups. Springfield Boys & Girls Club received $7,500 and YMCA of Greater Springfield and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Hampden County each received $2,500 in a brief ceremony attended by Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno at the branch office. The bank was once Nuvo Bank & Trust Co., which changed its name in May 2017 to Community Bank following a series of mergers that ended with Community Bank System buying Merchants ...

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    3. Massachusetts thinks regionally about manufacturing workforce; ‘413’ gets $650K to school for jobs

      Massachusetts thinks regionally about manufacturing workforce; ‘413’ gets $650K to school for jobs

      Precision manufacturers recruiting workers with much-needed skills look across the region, not community by community. Now, with the most recent set of grants from the state’s Advanced Manufacturing Training Program, the agencies that train unemployed and underemployed adults for those jobs are thinking regionally as well. “We are going to be looking all across the 413 area code, which is not something that has been done before,” said David M. Cruise, MassHire Hampden County Workforce Board president and CEO. “We think this makes great sense because it consolidates the boards into regions, and the regions, we think, are reflective ...

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    4. Springfield Works, with pilot program taking 2-generation approach to job readiness, wins 1 of 9 Massachusetts Urban Agenda Program grants

      Springfield Works, with pilot program taking 2-generation approach to job readiness, wins 1 of 9 Massachusetts Urban Agenda Program grants

      The Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts' Springfield Works program uses an online portal to match job seekers with opportunities and training to better their chances of landing a good job. Now, with the help of Holyoke-Chicopee-Springfield Head Start and Dress for Success Western Massachusetts, Springfield Works will provide the early education programs needed for a whole family to work its way out of poverty. Springfield Works received a $75,000 grant Thursday from the state, one of nine programs sharing $500,000 from the Urban Agenda Program.

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    5. Staples to close East Longmeadow store | masslive.com

      Staples to close East Longmeadow store | masslive.com

      Staples will close its store at 433 North Main St. in East Longmeadow on March 8. The Framingham-based office supply retail has other locations nearby in Enfield, Connecticut, on Boston Road in Springfield and at 129 Riverdale St, West Springfield.  The East Longmadow store opened February 14, 2004 , company spokeswoman Jocelyn Thomas said in an email.

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    6. Café Du Jour auction planned; downtown Springfield location will become 2nd Delaney’s Market

      Café Du Jour auction planned; downtown Springfield location will become 2nd Delaney’s Market

      The storefront will be home to a new Delaney’s Market location set to open in the early part of this year. Auctioneers Aaron Posnik & Co. of West Springfield will conduct the sale beginning at 11 a.m. Cafe Du Jour, in business since 1995 and owned since 2009 by the Saleh family, closed earlier this month. The Salehs had been on a month-to-month lease and the landlord, Glenn Edwards, of Chart Organization, of Lynbrook, New York, told them they would have to vacate.

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    7. MassHousing announces $50M in financing for Chestnut Park Apartments, part of a package of $87M

      MassHousing announces $50M in financing for Chestnut Park Apartments, part of a package of $87M

      MassHousing, the state’s quasi-public housing finance agency, will provide $50 million in affordable financing to the owners of the long-troubled Chestnut Park Apartments in Springfield, part of an agreement that will raise $87 million to refinance the purchase and renovation of the complex. MassHousing approved the deal in December. Related Companies that month shifted ownership of Chestnut Towers between business entities it controls with the on-paper selling price of $12 million.

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      Mentions: Springfield
    8. New Florence Bank branch in Springfield features fast cash-handling technology, coffee bar (photos, video)

      New Florence Bank branch in Springfield features fast cash-handling technology, coffee bar (photos, video)

      Local officials, employees and stakeholders were on hand Wednesday to officially cut the ribbon on Florence Bank’s newest Pioneer Valley branch on Allen Street in Springfield. The new branch, which officially opened in December, has an open floor plan with two teller pods and technology for quick cash handling. The location also features a drive-up ATM with SMART technology for easy depositing and a comfortable waiting area inside with a coffee bar and free Wi-Fi.

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    9. Holyoke City Council approves zone change to pave way for proposed 100-unit apartment...

      Holyoke City Council approves zone change to pave way for proposed 100-unit apartment...

      The City Council on Tuesday approved a zoning change for a property near Whiting Farms Road, the proposed site of a 100-unit apartment complex. Developer Tom Adamczyk asked the city to change the zone for the parcel at 15 Holy Family Road from residential to multifamily, which allows the project to move forward. Adamczyk estimated the project would cost $10 million. The developer plans to build 76 one-bedroom and 24 two-bedroom market-rate apartments. The development includes several green spaces and a playground.

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    10. Hampshire College Seeks Partner, Grapples with Future

      Hampshire College Seeks Partner, Grapples with Future

      Citing financial strain, Hampshire College on Tuesday outlined its desire to merge with another educational institution. The school is also evaluating whether to admit a freshman class for the fall. The news came in an e-mail from President Miriam Nelson. “I’m announcing today our intent to find a long-term partner that can help us achieve a thriving and sustainable future for Hampshire,” she wrote. “With the guidance and passion of Hampshire’s trustees we’ve begun a process to seek a strategic partnership to address the challenges we’ve faced as an underendowed institution, really from our very first ...

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    11. Smith & Wesson parent American Outdoor Brands buys laser sight, laser training company LaserLyte

      Smith & Wesson bought Crimson Trace for $95 million in 2016 before changing its name to American Outdoor Brands. Both moves, along with Tuesday’s purchase of LaserLyte, were part of a long-term strategy to diversify into hunting and camping equipment, shooting accessories and gunsmith tools and equipment.

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    12. Enfield Square mall buyer revealed

      Enfield Square mall buyer revealed

      Enfield Square Mall sold at auction in December to Namdar Realty Group of Long Island, New York, for $11.4 million. Namdar, owner of 223 properties, has a history of buying underperforming malls around the country and attracting nontraditional tenants like gyms and senior centers to the unused space, according to published reports in towns where it already does business.

       

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      Mentions: Springfield
    13. People in Business: Eastern States Exposition’s Greg Chiecko named President and CEO of the Outdoor Amusement Business Association

      People in Business: Eastern States Exposition’s Greg Chiecko named President and CEO of the Outdoor Amusement Business Association

      Greg Chiecko, of Chicopee, Eastern States Exposition (ESE) Director of Sales, has been named President and CEO of the Outdoor Amusement Business Association (OABA), the mobile amusement industry’s trade association. The OABA is the largest trade association representing carnivals, circuses, concessionaires, independent ride owners and others who serve fairs, festivals and community events.

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    14. OMG Inc. Named Company of the Year by SmartDollar

      OMG Inc. Named Company of the Year by SmartDollar

      The statistics are alarming: 70% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck. At work, stress over finances can take a toll on employee performance and impact productivity. Almost 10 years ago, OMG Inc. saw this as a factor limiting employee success and took action. OMG used SmartDollar, the financial-wellness program created by money expert and best-selling author Dave Ramsey, to teach employees how to take better care of themselves financially. “This has been a game changer for us,” said Sarah Corrigan, vice president of Human Resources. “More than 300 employees have taken advantage of the tools we offer for free ...

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    15. HCC, Westfield State Announce Nursing Degree Partnership

      Officials from Holyoke Community College (HCC) and Westfield State University signed a dual admission agreement this week that streamlines the process for students who want to continue their nursing educations at Westfield State after earning an associate degree in nursing at HCC.  The RN-to-BSN completion program partnership was announced during a ceremony at HCC’s Center for Health Education on Jarvis Avenue in Holyoke, home to the college’s RN (registered nurse) and LPN (licensed practical nursing) programs and medical simulation center.

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    16. Springfield City Council grants tax incentives totaling $4.6M for major Big Y expansion

      Springfield City Council grants tax incentives totaling $4.6M for major Big Y expansion

      The City Council on Monday unanimously approved tax incentives for Big Y Foods, which officials estimate will save the company nearly $4.6 million over eight years, in exchange for a major expansion at its distribution center in East Springfield.Big Y is investing an estimated $46 million in the 232,000-square-foot expansion project at 2146 Roosevelt Ave. including construction, renovations, personal property and equipment, officials said. The project also involves creating additional parking and access from properties owned by Big Y at 60 and 90 Memorial Drive.

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    17. $9.2 million tax-exempt bond boosts Springfield YMCA housing renovation project

      $9.2 million tax-exempt bond boosts Springfield YMCA housing renovation project

      A local development group has launched a $15 million housing renovation project at the YMCA building on Chestnut Street, aided by a newly announced $9.2 million tax exempt bond issued by MassDevelopment. MassDevelopment is the state’s finance and development agency that works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions and communities to stimulate economic growth statewide.

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    18. ‘Summer of Seuss’ drove Pioneer Valley visitors in ’17, say just-released state numbers

      ‘Summer of Seuss’ drove Pioneer Valley visitors in ’17, say just-released state numbers

      ourists, conventioneers and other visitors to Hampden County spent $608 million in 2017, a 6.5 percent increase from the year before, according to figures recently released by the Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism and publicized by the Greater Springfield Convention & Visitors Bureau. “It was the summer of Seuss,” said Mary Kay Wydra, president of the Visitors Bureau.

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    19. Holyoke, Amherst public schools receive $300K bilingual education grant

      Holyoke, Amherst public schools receive $300K bilingual education grant

      Amherst and Holyoke public schools will share a $300,000 bilingual education grant, the superintendents of the two districts said in a joint statement Friday. The money was awarded by the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Michael Morris is Amherst school superintendent. Stephen Zrike is Holyoke schools' state-appointed receiver.

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    20. An inside look at the newly opened ARA Holyoke Dialysis Center in Holyoke

      An inside look at the newly opened ARA Holyoke Dialysis Center in Holyoke

      In a special place in Holyoke, tucked up on a hill overlooking the valley is the newly opened 9,000 square-foot state-of-the-art ARA Holyoke Dialysis Center located at 36 Lower Westfield Rd. The new dialysis center features comfort and convenience with more than 20 machines in the main treatment room. Each is equipped with a flat screen television, wireless internet, DVD players, and heated massage dialysis chairs, and a team of dedicated staff to provide direct care. The main treatment room also features three isolation rooms if needed.

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      Mentions: Holyoke Westfield
    21. Baystate Franklin to Launch Pilot Program for Stress Management

      Baystate Franklin to Launch Pilot Program for Stress Management

       Baystate Franklin Medical Center announced it will offer the Stress Management and Resiliency Training (SMART) course beginning Monday, Jan. 28. Developed by the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, the SMART program helps participants achieve greater quality of life and an enhanced sense of well-being. The program teaches self-care practices that help buffer daily stress, making participants less emotionally and physically vulnerable to it. Stress affects more than just mental health; an estimated 75% to 90% of all doctor visits are for stress-related issues. Stress is a factor in five out of the six leading causes ...

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      Mentions: Greenfield
    22. Springfield Leadership Institute to Begin 2019 Session on Feb. 28

      The 2019 Springfield Leadership Institute will focus on core management and leadership skills for increasing personal and organizational effectiveness. The practical and applied program will equip participants with the knowledge and skills to take their leadership to the next level. The Institute, which begins on Feb. 28, runs through June 6 on Thursdays from 1 to 4:30 p.m., and is directed by Robert Kleine III, dean of the Western New England University College of Business, and Associate Professor Stacie Chappell, who has a strong background in leadership development and consulting to a variety of organizations. The program is ...

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      Mentions: Springfield
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