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Daily News

HADLEY — UMassFive College Federal Credit Union announced it is bringing student-loan repayment benefits to its employees via a new partnership between Student Choice and FutureFuel.io.

Student Choice teamed up with FutureFuel.io earlier this year to better help credit unions address the growing challenge of student-loan debt faced by the emerging workforce. Participating in this new perk allows credit unions to offer their employees and employees of select employee groups access to FutureFuel’s online portal of automated tools that can help reduce the impact of student debt.

“UMassFive got its start serving the students and staff of the Five Colleges in the Pioneer Valley,” said Lauren Duffy, the credit union’s executive vice president and chief operating officer. “While our field of membership has expanded over time, our roots in higher education remain a driving force in helping both our members and our employees pay for college responsibly. We believe offering student-loan repayment benefits to our employees will help them achieve greater financial freedom as they move toward other important stages of their lives.”

Daily News

CHICOPEE — Nearly a dozen employee volunteers from NESCOR will be on the serving lines for dinner at Lorraine’s Soup Kitchen today, Aug. 22.

As part of an ongoing effort to provide community outreach, NESCOR General Manager Bob Tariff and his team will work with Lorraine’s Soup Kitchen to serve more than 100 meals.

“This is a great opportunity for us to give back to a community we love,” he said. “Western Massachusetts has been our home for decades, and our team appreciates this chance to provide well-deserved support.”

Lorraine’s serves more than 30,000 meals per year to 12% of Chicopee’s population. NESCOR employees will serve food, clean dishes and tables, and provide general support to Lorraine’s staff and clientele.

Daily News

WEST SPRINGFIELD — DiGrigoli Salon announced that Kayce Babinksi, who has been a member of the artistic team for just over a year, was promoted on Aug. 1 from a junior stylist to a senior stylist.

Babinski specializes in vivid colors, balayage, and braided updos. She earned this promotion by being a dedicated and loyal stylist, increasing her clientele, and continuously staying educated on the latest trends and techniques.

She is a graduate of DiGrigoli School of Cosmetology and has attended several national hair shows and classes in Orlando, Fla. and New York City to make sure her clients are getting the best possible service. She has also been integral in supporting and promoting DiGrigoli’s own hair-product line, Paul Joseph Professional.

Daily News

WESTFIELD — Holyoke Medical Center announced expanded healthcare services in Westfield, including family medicine, women’s services, gastroenterology, walk-in care, and more.

Holyoke Medical Group Family Medicine, an affiliate of Holyoke Medical Center, has relocated to 140 Southampton Road in Westfield. The office offers care for the entire family, including pediatrics, adult primary care, women’s health, and geriatric care.

Dr. Thomas Graziano and Deborah Pisciotta, MS, PA-C, are accepting new patients. The office is open weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. To make an appointment, call (413) 535-4800.

“Holyoke Medical Center is committed to continuously provide our patients with high-quality medical care and treatment that is more accessible and convenient to them through community-based locations,” said Spiros Hatiras, president and CEO of Holyoke Medical Center.

In addition to Holyoke Medical Group Family Medicine, Holyoke Medical Center plans to offer walk-in care, lab draw, imaging services, and physical therapy at the 140 Southampton Road facility starting this fall.

Holyoke Medical Group Women’s Services also has an office in Westfield, located at 94 North Elm St., Suite 102, in Westfield. Holyoke Medical Center Gastroenterology will also open a new office at 94 North Elm St., Suite 206, in Westfield on Oct. 21.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — Skoler, Abbott & Presser, P.C. announced that one of its partners, Timothy Murphy, was recognized by his peers as a 2020 Lawyer of the Year in Springfield for his work in Labor Law – Management. Only a single lawyer in each practice area and community is honored with this award.

In addition, Murphy is recognized in the 2020 edition of Best Lawyers in America for his work in Employment Law – Management, Labor Law – Management, and Litigation – Labor and Employment.

“Tim has a depth of expertise in the field of employment law, including labor relations, union campaigns, collective bargaining and arbitration, and employment litigation and counseling,” said Marylou Fabbo, partner at Skoler Abbott. “His problem-solving skills, attitude, and experience benefit his clients, our firm, and his community.”

Focusing his practice on labor relations, union campaigns, collective bargaining and arbitration, employment litigation, and employment counseling, Murphy has been included in Best Lawyers in America every year since 2013 and was also Lawyer of the Year in 2015 and 2019. In 2017, he was named Man Enough to Be a Girl Scout by the Girls Scouts of Central and Western Massachusetts.

Murphy is also active within the local community, sitting on boards of directors for several area organizations, such as the Springfield Regional Chamber and Community Legal Aid. He is also a member of the World Affairs Council and the Finance Committee in Wilbraham.

Daily News

GREENFIELD — Registration is now open for the Connecticut River Conservancy’s (CRC) Source to Sea Cleanup. This annual event, now in its 23rd year, has grown into one of the largest river cleanups in the country. CRC invites volunteers to continue the tradition of getting dirty for cleaner rivers on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 27 and 28.

There are three ways for volunteers to get involved in the Source to Sea Cleanup this year: report a trash site in need of cleaning, find a nearby cleanup group to join, or organize and register a local cleanup group. For more information or to register for the event, visit www.ctriver.org/cleanup.

“The Source to Sea Cleanup strengthens community while cleaning up our rivers and streams. It’s an opportunity for you to make a difference,” said CRC Executive Director Andrew Fisk. “When people help clean their rivers, they make lasting connections with each other and with their rivers.”

The annual Source to Sea Cleanup is a two-day river cleanup coordinated by CRC in all four states of the 410-mile Connecticut River basin. Each fall, thousands of volunteers of all ages and abilities clean the Connecticut River and its tributaries on foot or by boat. Volunteers remove trash along rivers, streams, parks, boat launches, trails, and more.

“Source to Sea Cleanup volunteers have worked hard to combat litter and illegally dumped trash,” said Stacey Lennard, CRC Cleanup Coordinator. “Their hard work and dedication makes a real difference for our rivers.”

In 2018, more than 2,800 volunteers hauled more than 46 tons of trash from river banks and waterways across the four river states. Volunteers typically remove everything from recyclable bottles and cans, fishing equipment, and food waste to tires, televisions, and refrigerators. To date, volunteers have removed more than 1,100 tons of trash from rivers.

If your group wants to get involved but needs a cleanup site, if you have questions, or if you know of a trash site in need of cleaning, e-mail Lennard at [email protected]. Learn more about the event at www.ctriver.org/cleanup.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — Springfield College will welcome William Parham, the inaugural director of the National Basketball Players Assoc. Mental Health and Wellness Program and professor in the Counseling program at Loyola Marymount University, to the campus on Tuesday, Sept. 24 at 7:30 p.m. in the Fuller Arts Center. Parham’s presentation, titled “The Ink Used to Indelibly Etch Lasting Impressions: Invisible Tattoos of Trauma within Athletic Communities,” is part of the 2019-20 Humanics Triathlon project led by Distinguished Springfield Professor of Humanics Judy Van Raalte.

Parham has consulted with the National Football League, Major League Baseball, United States Olympic Committee, United States Tennis Assoc., and Major League Soccer. He has worked with athletes across many sports (basketball, football, gymnastics, softball, baseball, track and field, tennis, golf, swimming, volleyball, and figure skating) and across all levels (professional, elite, amateur, collegiate, and youth).

Parham is a licensed psychologist, board-certified in counseling psychology by the American Board of Professional Psychology and past president of the Society of Counseling Psychology of the American Psychological Assoc., where he is also recognized as a fellow in divisions 17 (Society of Counseling Psychology), 45 (Society for the Psychological Study of Culture, Ethnicity, and Race) and 47 (Society of Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology). He is widely known through his scholarship and conversations with domestic and international audiences for his work on the interplay between sport psychology, multiculturalism and diversity, and health psychology.

Daily News

MONSON — Monson High School graduate Cam Kratovil, sophomore Mason Dumas, and varsity golf coach Paul Nothe, in cooperation with Monson Savings Bank, teamed up to raise money for Shriners Hospitals for Children – Springfield.

Kratovil and Dumas collected pledges for a marathon golf round they recently played at Quaboag Country Club. They were escorted in golf carts around the course by Nothe and his wife, Nicole, as they completed their goal of playing 100 holes between the hours of 6 a.m. and noon. All the money pledged to them will be given to Shriners Hospitals for Children – Springfield. In addition, Monson Savings Bank sponsored the 2019 Pro-Am Golf Tournament at Quaboag Country Club on Aug. 17 and 18 to benefit the hospital

The Shriners mission is to provide the highest-quality care to children with neuromusculoskeletal conditions, burn injuries, and other special healthcare needs within a compassionate, family-centered, and collaborative care environment. It also provides for the education of physicians and healthcare professionals and conducts research to uncover knowledge that improves quality of care and quality of life for children and families.

Daily News

CHICOPEE — Starting with the class entering in the fall of 2020, Elms College will no longer require scores from standardized tests such as the SAT or ACT for admission to most majors.

The move to a test-optional policy is intended to make higher education accessible to students from all backgrounds, including from underrepresented populations.

“Standardized tests measure one thing: how well a student can do on a single test on a single day,” said Jon Scully, vice president of Enrollment Management and Marketing at Elms College. “They don’t measure dreams or aspirations, or a student’s potential to land a job after graduation, contribute to society, or work for social justice.”

Elms admission counselors will review applicants’ essays, letters of recommendation, and transcripts. They also will talk with prospective students to get to know them as full people.

The college’s mission is to educate a diverse community of learners and empower them to change the world for the better, Scully said. “We’re here to help them discover their purpose. We’re also here to help them find ways to fulfill that purpose through their studies, their careers, and their personal and spiritual lives. We give students real-world experiences that will make them top candidates for jobs upon graduation.”

The test-optional policy will give all students, including those from underrepresented populations such as racial and ethnic minorities or those with economic disadvantages — groups who traditionally earn lower scores on standardized tests because of systemic social inequities — a greater chance to access the educational and experiential opportunities Elms offers.

The School of Nursing at Elms will still require test scores, however, because nursing majors are required, upon graduation, to take the NCLEX exam to become licensed as nurses. “The NCLEX is a standardized test, so we need to know that our nursing students can succeed on such exams,” Scully explained.

Students or families with questions about test-optional admission, academics at Elms, or the application process are encouraged to contact the Office of Admission at (413) 592-3189 or [email protected]. More information is also available online at elms.edu/testoptional.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — Robinson Donovan, P.C. announced that attorney Patricia Rapinchuk, a partner at the firm, was recently selected as her region’s Lawyer of the Year for 2020 in the field of Litigation – Labor and Employment, by Best Lawyers in America.

“As head of Robinson Donovan’s employment law group, Patricia’s talent and expertise in this critical practice area are outstanding,” said Jeffrey Trapani, a partner at Robinson Donovan. “Employees and employers consistently praise her work in helping them achieve optimal outcomes on a range of labor, employment, and workplace-litigation issues. Patricia’s selection as Lawyer of the Year is a highly deserved honor.”

Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers has become universally regarded as a definitive guide to legal excellence. It is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey. More than 79,000 leading attorneys are eligible to vote. Lawyers are not required or allowed to pay a fee to be listed.

Rapinchuk a successful track record as a trial lawyer and concentrates her practice in employment law and litigation. She is a member of the Massachusetts Bar Assoc., the Hampden County Bar Assoc., the Hampshire County Bar Assoc., and the Women’s Bar Assoc. of Massachusetts. She is regularly honored by Massachusetts Super Lawyers, being selected as a Top 50 Woman in Massachusetts in 2012, 2013, 2015, and 2017. Additionally, this is her fourth  Best Lawyers Lawyer of the Year recognition in Litigation – Labor and Employment, being previously honored in 2016, 2018, and 2019.

Rapinchuk earned her bachelor’s degree from Mount Holyoke College and her juris doctor from the University of Connecticut.