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History

MassEdCO was originally founded as the Worcester Consortium for Higher Education in 1969 by ten college presidents in Central Massachusetts. Their goal at the time was to provide shared services for their students and staffs.

In 1973, the Consortium was one of thirteen original organizations to be awarded an Educational Opportunity Center grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The grant serves low income, first generation adults looking to access and complete some type of postsecondary education. We have been fortunate to have successfully competed for this TRIO grant every five years and currently serve some 5,000 adults in the following regions with local partners: 

  • Boston - American Student Assistance
  • Lynn - North Shore Community College
  • New Bedford - Seven Hills Foundation
  • Pittsfield- MassEdCO
  • Springfield/Holyoke - Valley Opportunity Council
  • Worcester - MassEdCO

In 1991, the Consortium successfully competed and was awarded an Educational Talent Search grant, another TRIO program of the U.S. Department of Education. This grant’s goal is “to increase the number of youth from disadvantaged backgrounds who complete high school and enroll in and complete their postsecondary education.” We have been fortunate to have successfully competed for this TRIO grant every five years and currently serve some 800 students, including:

  • New Bedford - Seven Hills Foundation
  • Southbridge - MassEdCO
  • Worcester - MassEdCO

In 1999, in partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education (MA-DHE), we were funded by the U.S. Department of Education for Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP). Using a cohort model, the goal of this grant is to increase the number of low-income, middle and high school students who are prepared to enter and succeed in postsecondary education. Along with the MA-DHE, we have been fortunate to have successfully competed for this grant every seven years and currently serve some 3,600 students including:

  • New Bedford – Seven Hills Foundation
  • Springfield/Holyoke – Valley Opportunity Council
  • Worcester - MassEdCO

In addition, we’ve added two privately funded programs. Funding for both programs is provided, in part, by the United Way of Central Massachusetts and the Greater Worcester Community Foundation.

  • The Collegiate Success Institute (CSI), an intensive after-school program for about 75 Worcester Public School students looking to enroll and complete a postsecondary education. 
  • On Our Way program, helping about 50 pregnant and parenting teen mothers stay on track to graduate from high school and continue on to enroll and complete a postsecondary education.

In 2013, the corporate entity restructured and was renamed MassEdCO. Today, we serve some 10,000 youth and adults from Boston to the Berkshires. Our goal is to ensure that all our clients enroll and complete a postsecondary education that is both a good academic and financial fit.