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Displaced ITT Tech students get back on track

Posted by Anthony Benoit on Sep 8, 2016 11:15:10 AM

The sudden closure of 130 ITT Technical Institute campuses, including two in Metro Boston, leaves 40,000 students displaced with their educational futures uncertain and their families in emotional and financial distress. Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology (BFIT) has joined federal and state departments of education, and colleges across the country, to help students get back on track.

BFIT is committed to supporting them as they plot a course to their intended destination—a good job in a technical field. Our admissions staff and faculty are already working with several former ITT students to make their transition into BFIT—and on to a degree and job placement—as smooth as possible. For former ITT students, we extended our enrollment deadline to Sept. 16. Click here to apply.

During this time of crisis, let’s not mistake the message for the messenger. The messenger was ITT, and the US Department of Education has clearly found serious fault with how that firm conducted business. However, the message is that our young people, returning veterans, midlife career-changers, and others, need education to fill the STEM jobs that pay well and that are crucial to our economy. The skills gap and the opportunity gap are real.

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Computer technology offers many career paths

Posted by Larson Rogers on Aug 24, 2016 12:08:39 PM

Today, there is no other field that offers so many different career options than computer technology. The best fit for our grads is to start as a computer support specialist. These experts advise people who use computer systems and software. They might work as part of an IT team or in a help desk role supporting non-IT users having computer problems.

But there are a number of other career paths that open up, especially once these grads gain some on-the-job experience. These include customer service, web development, networking and programming positions. Some people choose to work off-site via a customer service hotline or in a customer service chat room.

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Topics: Computer Technology, Views

Tuition: One variable in the higher ed equation

Posted by Anthony Benoit on Jul 19, 2016 3:24:31 PM

The rising cost of college and its acute impact on communities of color have received significant media attention in the past few months and deservedly so.  As the Boston Globe reported in its article, “Students at state’s public colleges gird for higher tuition,” the cost to attend a state university or a community college in Massachusetts will go up by 8 to 10 percent this year.

Historically, state universities and community colleges have served a large number of minority students hoping to earn a degree without breaking the bank. According to the Center for Community College Student Engagement, over one-third of community college students in the U.S. are of color – Hispanics representing 18 percent, Blacks at 15 percent, Asian/Pacific Islander at 6 percent; and 40 percent who are first-generation college students. Therefore, this price hike will certainly impact families of color who already face a high cost of living, lower incomes and higher unemployment rates.

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Technology Business & Management: Bridging technicians and management

Posted by Andrew Wong on Jul 12, 2016 2:00:00 PM

It's becoming increasingly important for companies to bridge the gap between technicians and management. A Technology Business & Management degree gives you the knowledge and skills to become a manager or start your own business. 

What is Technology Business & Management?

All industries are striving to be more efficient and effective in their development and delivery of goods or services. In order to achieve this enhanced productivity, companies need better tools and more innovative thinking. Technology Business & Management (TBM) blends the skills and know-how of a technician with the acumen of a business manager.

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BFIT shares benefits of technical and vocational education

Posted by Anthony Benoit on Jun 28, 2016 4:00:00 PM

Posted on  by , CEO of MindBridge Partners.

As the rising cost of college becomes a greater concern, more and more students are looking to technical and vocational education programs to jump-start their careers. Increasing demand for skilled workers in construction, medical technology, or automotive technology also means that the benefits of a traditional 4-year degree may not be as practical as the skills a 2-year associates degree can provide.

To get to the bottom of this trend toward technical and vocational education, guest host Esin Sile, CEO of MindBridge Partners interviewed Anthony Benoit, President of Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology about how his school is trying to fill the skills gap.

Interview with Esin Sile and Tony Benoit (FULL TRANSCRIPT)

ETT: Good morning Tony we’re so glad to have you here this morning. Tony Benoit is the President of the Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology here in Boston and my name is Esin Sile. I am the CEO and co-founder of MindBridge Partners and we are guest hosting a podcast on EdTech Times today with Tony. Good morning again, Tony.

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Smaller classes make a bigger impact

Posted by Mike Bosco on Jun 21, 2016 2:30:00 PM

Small class size and accessible academic supports play a critical role in helping students graduate. We’ve heard this story so many times. A student enrolls at a large community college or university, but drops out due to not being unable to make the transition, or getting lost in the maze of higher education and “feeling like a number.” It’s not for lack of intelligence or hard work. Students simply do not get the one-on-one attention and support they need to thrive in the classroom and workplace.

BFIT’s Student Success model is structured to help students succeed, especially those who thrive in small, hands-on learning environments. The college’s 13:1 student to faculty ratio is designed to give students direct access to their instructors during class and outside the classroom. Students’ questions can be answered as they arise and not postponed until later “office hours.” You can’t hide or get lost in a small class. Instructors know each student individually and are aware when they are falling behind. When this happens, they can quickly communicate with student services and advisors to get the student the help they need.

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Violence has no place in our society, schools

Posted by Anthony Benoit on Jun 14, 2016 6:00:00 PM

Tomorrow, friends, family members, classmates, teachers, and school officials will pay their final respects to 17-year old Raekwon Brown, a junior at Jeremiah E. Burke High School, who was shot and killed near the high school on June 8. According to media reports, the outgoing student dreamed of going to college and launching a music career.

Just four days later, in the shadow of this tragedy, we woke up to learn of the murderous rampage at an Orlando nightclub, where 49 innocent people were gunned down and killed in a senseless hail of bullets. Media reports suggest they were targeted for this barbaric end simply because they belonged to the LGBT community. 

In his commencement address to the Jeremiah E. Burke High School Class of 2016, Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh said, “You’re sad, you’re angry, you’re upset–you have every right to be, because I am as well. It’s sad a young man’s future has been cut short.”

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Why veterans make great college students

Posted by Tom DeCosta on Jun 7, 2016 2:00:00 PM

In my time at Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology (BFIT), I have been proud to help recruit and educate exceptional college students who are also veterans. As a veteran myself, it fills me with pride to see the young men and women who are exiting today’s military and entering the college ranks.

From my firsthand experience, veterans make excellent college students, and often lead the pack due to the experience they acquired while in the service. From the moment recruits enter basic training, they are shaped into responsible young men and women. This maturity carries on into their service as they face increased responsibilities.

Once enrolled in college, veterans have already developed the maturity and discipline to approach their education – experience that some high school students lack when they enter college. For a veteran, many of these issues have been dealt with already and successfully overcome.

From my firsthand experience, veterans make excellent college students due to the experience they acquire while in the service.

Veteran students have also faced difficult challenges while serving our nation. Some may have even encountered life and death situations. Their experience in overcoming these challenges prepares them to approach difficult times during college. Even when things are rough academically, veteran students seem to possess a certain calm about themselves. 

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Why we need to train more building trade technicians

Posted by Ryan Hutchins on May 24, 2016 3:47:00 PM

If you have spent time in downtown Boston during the past few years, you’ve surely noticed the towering cranes and scaffolding dotting the skyline.  Notably, residential construction starts in Boston rose 90% in the month of January to $487.8 million in projects, compared to $257.2 million the year prior. Meanwhile, nonresidential construction starts rose 18 percent to $354.5 million in projects, up from $299.4 million the year before.

As Senior Vice President at Gilbane Building Company, I can tell you that building activity trends in Boston will continue on an impressive trajectory for many years to come. However, growth in these areas in 2014 and 2015 has already resulted in labor shortages in the building professions.  Finding skilled workers, sufficiently trained and eager to learn, can be challenging, and without them the growth will not be captured.

Finding skilled workers, sufficiently trained and eager to learn, can be challenging, and without them the growth will not be captured.

According to Gilbane’s most recent Construction Economics Report, this may end up the most active three-year period (2013-16) of growth in construction in more than 20 years.  Construction added one million jobs during 2011-2015, however 800,000 of those jobs were added in just the last three years and construction spending growth for the period 2013-2016 is expected to outpace all previous periods.

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Free summer courses help students stay on pathway to success

Posted by Mike Bosco on May 3, 2016 4:30:00 PM

Last week, Boston.com reported some sobering news. According to the recently released National Assessment Governing Board’s “Nation’s Report Card," only 37 percent of high school seniors are academically prepared for college-level math and reading course­work.

High school students in Massachusetts do slightly better. In 2013, 12th graders performed nine points higher than the national average on the math test and six points higher on the reading test. Yet, the problem still remains: too often, students enter college unprepared for the academic rigors of higher education. In fact, more than 50% of students entering two-year degree programs require remedial coursework before they can begin to tackle their degree.

More than 50% of students entering two-year degree programs require remedial coursework before they can begin to tackle their degree.

Many of these students come from disadvantaged backgrounds, financially and academically, and immediately fall behind before even getting started on their degree. As the burden becomes too great to overcome, these students begin to drop out before reaching graduation – 62% complete their remediation coursework and then only 22% earn their degree.

Yet, where a challenge exists, so too does opportunity. Through supportive efforts that enhance academic, social and personal growth, we help students overcome these challenges, obtain a degree, and secure a rewarding job. By doing this, they can uplift themselves and their families, and add to the economic vitality of the Commonwealth.

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In keeping with Franklin’s tradition as a journalist, we offer the BFIT Blog. Our weekly blog will keep you connected with our students, graduates, faculty, and staff and provide insight on issues related to technology, higher education, workforce development, philanthropy, and diversity.

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