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New Partnership between NECC and Fortune 500 Employers will Lead to “Job-Ready” Skills

Submitted by on July 19, 2021 – 7:29 pm

Haverhill and Lawrence, MA. (July 20, 2021)-This fall, Northern Essex Community College will offer two new micro-credentials, in Sales and Customer Service and Business Analytics, geared for those looking to begin, change, or enhance their careers.  NECC is collaborating with Wayfair, Dell, and HubSpot, which was recently voted #4 on Glassdoor’s annual list of Best Places to Work.

“We are going to teach you a very specific skill in a very short time,” said Alex Rodriguez, the college’s director of corporate & community education. “The point is to make you job-ready now.”

Each program will meet online for three hours for 15 weeks, starting the second week in September. The Sales and Customer Service course will be taught on Tuesday evenings and the Business Analytics course on Wednesday evenings.

While other colleges may offer micro-credentials, what is unique to Northern Essex’s program is the level of involvement of the employers, according to Rodriguez. These firms have helped shape the curriculum and will continue to be part of the program, speaking to classes, providing case studies, and participating in networking events. In turn, they will have more immediate access to program talent and are eager to hire participants.

The price of each micro-credential is $1,300 and there is funding available of up to $1,300 to assist students with their educational costs, including tuition and fees. Students who successfully complete the course will earn three credits toward an associate degree at Northern Essex and a free voucher for a three-credit course that can be taken in the future.

Alex Rodriguez, NECC director of corporate & community education

The Sales and Service course will cover “real world” sales, customer service, and management/supervisory skills and will prepare students for sales careers in any industry. The curriculum will focus on engaging students in real life scenarios and current industry practitioners will be leveraged as guest speakers. At the end of the course, students will understand selling and customer service techniques, know key methodologies in attaining sales goals and benchmarks, be able to assess and deliver on customer needs, and have more fully developed oral and written communications skills.

The Business Analytics course will prepare students for careers analyzing data that will allow them to draw conclusions to develop business strategies to improve performance. The course will cover standard analytical tools, data visualization as well as best practices around telling a “data story.”

“We created these programs after researching what kind of skills were most in demand in the Greater Merrimack Valley and Greater Boston,” said Rodriguez. “This is an amazing opportunity that we believe will get our students closer to immediate and sustainable careers with real potential.”

To learn more, contact Rodriguez at

NECC’s Center for Corporate & Community Education offers noncredit business, professional, career, and personal development courses as well as professional certificates and computer training for individuals and companies looking for cutting-edge skills, by providing the training that is most needed in today’s workforce. For more information email or call 978-659-1200 or visit us online

Northern Essex Community College has campuses in both Haverhill and Lawrence. It offers approximately 60 associate degree and certificate programs as well as hundreds of noncredit courses designed for personal enrichment and career growth.  Each year, 6,000 students are enrolled in credit associate degree and certificate programs on the Haverhill and Lawrence campuses; and another 2,000 take noncredit workforce development and community education classes on campus, and at businesses and community sites across the Merrimack Valley.  For more information, visit the website at or call 978-556-3700.