NoteWorthy is your weekly news roundup of happenings, movers and shakers, and community events in the Merrimack Valley.
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AROUND THE VALLEY
Lawrence CommunityWorks Celebrates Opening of Duck Mill Apartment Complex
Today, Lawrence CommunityWorks celebrated a ribbon cutting at the opening of the Duck Mill apartment complex in Lawrence. Speakers included State Rep. Niki Tsongas, Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera LCW Executive Director Jessica Andors and Marquis Victor of the Elevated Thought Foundation, a nonprofit organization that helped decorate the newly renovated former mill building.
Andors cited Marge Piercy’s poem, “To Be of Use,” and the lines: “The work of the world is common as mud./Botched, it smears the hands, crumbles to dust./But the thing worth doing well done/has a shape that satisfies, clean and evident.” She then introduced an emotional Tsongas, who noted, amidst the brickwork of the new building, “We’re all entitled to some beauty in our lives.”
The new union street complex will provide housing for 73 low-to-moderate income families, as well as 10,000 square feet of commercial space.
NECC Expands Partnership with Neurocare, Largest Employer of Sleep Techs in State
Because of a shortage of sleep technologists, students in Northern Essex Community College’s Sleep Technology Certificate Program are getting jobs before they graduate. Eager to hire more sleep technologists, Neurocare, Inc., the largest employer of sleep technologists in Massachusetts, recently expanded its relationship with the college.
A clinical site for Northern Essex students for the past seven years, Neurocare is now hiring students for paid, entry-level positions. Last spring, half of the graduating class of 18 was hired by the company.
The shortage of sleep technologists is being driven in part by the closure of at least two sleep technology programs in recent years. Northern Essex is currently the only college in New England graduating sleep technologists.
Greater Lowell Community Foundation Awards $131,500 to 17 Nonprofit Organizations
This month, the Greater Lowell Community Foundation granted 17 nonprofit organizations funds to support programs improving the quality of life in Greater Lowell and the Merrimack Valley. As part of its discretionary grant cycle, nonprofit organizations were awarded funds in the areas of opioid abuse prevention and treatment, clean water initiatives, elder services, and children’s services.
A seventeen member grants distribution committee representing nonprofit, civic, academic, and private sector interests selected the recipients. This year, $131,500 in discretionary funds was available through this grant-making program. The nonprofit organizations awarded include Habitat for Humanity of Greater Lowell, Merrimack Valley Food Bank, Megan’s House and Clean River Project.
MCC Awarded Grant to Help Refugees Earn Health Credentials
Middlesex Community College has been awarded a one-year, $79,000 grant from the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education’s Bridges to College Program to support the college’s new Health Career Credentialing for Adult Refugees program.
The program is designed to help the employment outlook for Lowell’s significant adult refugee population, explained Denise Garrow-Pruitt, assistant dean of allied health.
“Many adult learners entering the country have previous experience in the health care field, but do not have credentials recognized by the U.S. government,” said Garrow-Pruitt. “This training can enhance the adult-refugee students’ employability at higher wages in local hospitals, offices, nursing homes or clinics.”
Health Career Credentialing for Adult Refugees will provide intensive student supports to 30 adult learners of diverse ethnicities, and give them access to academic coaching and a bilingual advisor. Students can enroll in one of three AHP programs: Nursing Assistant, Phlebotomist and Medical Office Assistant.
MOVERS & SHAKERS
Emma Brooks has been promoted to director of member and community relations at the Greater Lowell Chamber of Commerce. Brooks has been an essential part of the GLCC team for the past two years, and in her new role, will be representing the Chamber at community events, play a vital role in developing and implementing marketing campaigns and strategies and continue to be the key conduit between the Chamber and its members.
Covenant Health Announces New Appointments
Covenant Health has appointed four senior healthcare professionals to key leadership roles:
John Emerson has assumed the position of vice president of the Integrated Medical Group. His past professional experience includes serving as principal and practice leader for a nationally-known strategic consulting and marketing firm serving the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries, as well as vice president of a Fortune 500 global research and advisory firm. His educational credentials include degrees in Computer Science from Purdue University and Business Administration from the Wharton School of Business.
Gerard J. Foley has been appointed vice president of post-acute care. Foley brings to the position many years of experience including tenure as president/CEO of Mary Immaculate Health/Care Services; as CEO of Kindred Hospital Boston North Shore and as executive vice president and CEO of Lawrence General Hospital. He holds a J.D. from Suffolk University Law School, a Master of Public Health from Yale University School of Medicine and a B.A. in Philosophy from the College of the Holy Cross.
Jason VanDiver has joined in the capacity of vice president, strategy and marketing. In this role, his responsibilities include system-wide strategic planning, identification and execution of innovative business opportunities and cross-functional program development. VanDiver is a senior marketing executive with more than 20 years of experience in the healthcare industry. He earned a B.A. in Communications/Journalism from the University of Kentucky and an M.S. in Business Communications from Spalding University.
Katherine Bechtold will be assuming the position of chief nursing officer effective next month. In this newly created position, Bechtold will have direct responsibility for, and provide overall organization and strategic direction to the nursing management team. Her focus will include the development, implementation, and coordination of programs and initiatives that combine to provide consistent, optimum patient care across the Covenant Health system. Bechtold earned a B.S. in Nursing from the University of Wyoming and an M.S. in Healthcare Administration from the University of Denver.
Six Holy Family Hospital Physicians Named Top Doctors for 2017
Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. has announced its Top Doctors for 2017, and six physicians on staff at Holy Family Hospital made the list.
Holy Family Hospital’s Top Doctors for 2017 are Orthopedic Surgeons Eric Arvidson, Barry Bickley, and Tahsin Ergin; Urologist Steven Previte; Plastic Surgeon George Chatson; and Otolaryngologist Daryl Colden.
Castle Connolly publishes its regional list of Top Doctors to help consumers find high quality health care providers. Castle Connolly Top Doctors are rated in the top 10 percent of physicians in their medical specialty in their geographic region, and considered physician leaders within their communities.