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NECC Receives Workplace English Training Grant

Submitted by on January 13, 2015 – 5:20 pm

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Thirty-six employees at three Haverhill food manufacturing companies will receive Workplace English training thanks to a $71,000 Rapid Response Program Grant awarded to Northern Essex Community College (NECC) from the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education.

This is the third and largest Rapid Response grant NECC has received over the past three years. The Rapid Response Program was created to enable community colleges to respond in a timely manner to the workforce development needs of its local employers. The DHE awards grants through a competitive process to support employer requests for workforce training programs. These programs take into consideration the scheduling needs of working adults. 

NECC’s Project Gateway Proposal, which will be funded with the grant, will bring English classes into the workplace for employees at Cedar’s Mediterranean, Joseph’s Gourmet Pasta, and Hans Kissle. The classes, which are approximately 90 minutes long, will be held twice a week and are scheduled to be offered for 17 weeks.

“The food manufacturing sector in our region has been a significant employer of workers with limited English speaking skills,” said George Moriarty, executive director of NECC’s Center for Corporate and Community Education. “The grant allows us to take advantage of that positive employment record by improving workers’ language skills, making them more effective workers on the shop floors.”

The grant gives NECC the opportunity to continue its Workplace English partnership with Joseph’s Gourmet Pasta, renew its partnership with Cedar’s, and create a partnership with Hans Kissle.

An additional part of the grant includes providing English as a Second Language and computer skills training to 20 unemployed individuals. This component of the grant will help create a pipeline of job seekers with strong language skills. The College will collaborate with the ValleyWorks one-stop career center to identify unemployed individuals who would benefit from English as a Second Language training and computer skills.

For additional information contact George Moriarty, executive director of workforce development and corporate relations, Northern Essex Community College,, 978 659-1224.