Posted: 02/27/2022 17:00:38
Modified: 02/27/2022 17:00:11
GREENFIELD – Greenfield Community College announced a partnership with Upright Education to offer bootcamps for learning new technology skills including software development, user interface (UI) and user experience design (UX) ).
“We are delighted that GCC is partnering with Upright to provide intensive training in software development and UI/UX design,” GCC Acting President Richard Hopper said in a statement. “These industry-recognized skills and certifications are in high demand and are an ideal route to self-employment from home. Together, we work to ensure people in our area are career ready, helping to make Greenfield and surrounding areas a hub for career technology training.
The new partnership will be delivered through GCC’s Workforce Development Office, according to a GCC press release. Participants can attend programs virtually and complete them in as little as 10 weeks. Start dates are available online at bootcamp.gcc.mass.edu.
Upright Education CEO Benny Boas said he got in touch with Hopper through a Vermont contact at the Vermont College of Fine Arts.
Hopper “has serious vision,” Boas said. “When you tell someone about your program or your products, it’s very clear right away if they understand. Rick was one of those people who really saw the opportunity and the vision for the program quickly.
Although bootcamps have been around for a few years through Boas’ company Burlington Code Academy, colleges started reaching out around the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, looking to form a partnership. From this interest was born the beginning of standing education.
“Adult learners are the emerging student populations that need attention in higher education, simply because so many adults are trying to change careers,” Boas said.
The needs of employers also change regularly, he added.
“This is a huge opportunity for colleges,” Boas said. “The idea is that you build a lifelong learner. Adults today still need to go back to school. The colleges will have to serve a new purpose. That’s sort of the kind of relationship we’re trying to establish with these schools.
Upright Education not only offers technology and software development bootcamps, it also offers professional support. He noted that the bootcamps are not limited to GCC students, but can be viewed by anyone 18 or older.
According to Boas, the type of program he offers through Upright Education will be the first of its kind in Western Massachusetts — typically, he said, tech startup campuses are primarily available in major metropolitan areas.
“Our goal is not just to be in the big cities,” he said. “GCC is leading the way for this to happen on the East Coast.”
A list of bootcamps is available at bootcamp.gcc.mass.edu.
Journalist Mary Byrne can be reached at [email protected] or 413-930-4429. Twitter: @MaryEByrne