Breaking down the headlines


Breaking down the headlines

By Alan Chartock, Berkshire Eagle Staff

Updated: 10/30/2010 08:50:58 AM EDT

Saturday October 30, 2010


MCLA sees future in site

The establishment of a new science building at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts is one of the most important things to happen in Berkshire County in a long, long time. A lot of people put their shoulders to the wheel on this one.

If this county and this country are to prosper, it will be the sciences leading the way. Unless we can compete with the Chinese, the Indians and the Japanese we will become a second- rate economy.

If Williams College needs something new on its campus, you had better believe that a good, well-heeled alumni person will come up with the money that is required. Hey, you can't take it with you and there is only so much your kids really need.

If this country is to live up to the promise of equal opportunity for all, we absolutely need top-notch public colleges to pave the way. On the face of it, this new science building cost a lot of money. This is a proper use of public resources. Mary Grant, president of MCLA, had to use all of her considerable skills to get the job done.

Her work with the Berkshire delegation was exemplary. Her technique was one of inclusion and it was because she helped our legislators to understand that this was "our" project that she was able to succeed in a time of great economic uncertainty. I am sure that having the commitment of Berkshire resident Deval Patrick didn't hurt this effort.

In addition to this being great for the students of MCLA, the venture will help recruit the kinds of science-oriented businesses that can take advantage of the research and science faculty at the college. Quite frequently, the basic scientific research that is being conducted in our academic institutions is adopted by entrepreneurial types who start and run businesses that employ people who might not otherwise have jobs.

If there is one thing that is much on the minds of people in our region it is jobs and even more importantly, jobs for our children so that they don't have to move away