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Company Notebook

Bay Path Launches Online MS in Accounting
LONGMEADOW — Taking into consideration many of the specific challenges facing accountants and other professionals in that industry, Bay Path College recently announced the launch of a master of science in Accounting (MSA) degree designed to respond to their needs. Now registering classes for May 2014, the exclusively online MS, with one- and two-year tracks, holds no classes during the busy season for accountants, January through April. Three concentrations are offered, public accounting (tax and audit), private accounting, and forensic accounting. The curriculum of Bay Path’s MSA is also designed to satisfy the educational requirements for licensure as a CPA in over 40 states, including Massachusetts and Connecticut. In January 2014, Time magazine reported that accountants were one of the top five jobs in demand by employers, and the Department of Labor recently cited the occupation as one of the leading areas of job growth in the next decade. The American Assoc. of CPAs has shown that accountants with a master’s degree are likely to earn upward of 20% more than those with a lesser degree. Kara Stevens, who chairs the program, has years of professional experience in accounting. “At Bay Path, we understand how to teach technical accounting and what it’s like to work in the accounting industry,” she said. “Our accounting faculty have worked in the professions where students are either coming from or hope to be a part of, and that’s an important differentiator with our MSA. This makes the degree more relevant to the students’ professional goals.” For more information about the program and other graduate degrees, visit graduate.baypath.edu.

STCC Launches STEM Starter Academy
SPRINGFIELD — Springfield Technical Community College (STCC) has announced a new summer program that will allow incoming students a chance to get an early start on their college credits while also exploring the possibility of a career in the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines. The STEM Starter Academy will allow participants to earn a $1,000 stipend; take free college courses, including the College Success Seminar “Essentials of Engineering and Math”; participate in field trips; and learn from guest speakers and STEM experts currently working in the field. To apply to the STEM Starter Academy, a student must be a Massachusetts high-school graduate from the classes of 2012, 2013, or 2014, submit an STCC admissions application for the fall 2014 semester and a STEM Starter Academy application, possess a grade-point average of 2.0 or above, and have parental consent (for those under 18 years of age). The application deadline is May 9. According to Dr. Robert Dickerman, STCC dean of the School of Math, Sciences, and Engineering Transfer, STEM graduates are in high demand. The STEM Starter Academy is an opportunity for students to gain a better understanding of the STEM field, learn about career possibilities, as well as earn college credit toward a future degree. “The goal of the STEM Starter Academy is to get students interested in STEM careers,” said Dickerman. “Students may not always think a STEM degree is for them, but we want to show them there are a lot of places that degree can take them. Being a part of the STEM Starter Academy is a phenomenal opportunity for local students.”

Monson Savings Awards Grant to Link to Libraries
MONSON — Steven Lowell, president of Monson Savings Bank, presented a community-service recognition grant to Link to Libraries. The nonprofit was awarded the foundation’s grant award for being in the top of the community-service organizations in the bank’s areas of giving. “ Support from the Monson Savings Bank Foundation not only supports our programs, but enriches the lives of the children in Ware, Palmer, Wilbraham, Hampden, and Monson,” said Janet Crimmins, president of Link to Libraries. “These are sites in which this organization distributes thousands of books each year. We are honored by the support of this bank and its staff who donate countless hours engaging with the children in their community.”

OMG Introduces RedLine AFR Roof Drain
AGAWAM — OMG Roofing Products of Agawam has introduced the RedLine AFR Roof Drain, a tool-free system that provides for maximum allowable flow for gravity-based, open-channel roof-drainage systems. The RedLine AFR mechanical seal can be activated by hand, eliminating the need for tools and significantly reducing installation time. In extreme rain events, a head of water can develop and create a pressurized flow in some roof-drain fixtures, leading to failures in the building’s plumbing system. RedLine AFR’s design, featuring the RedLine AFR Vortex Breaker, has been tested for maximum allowable flow and to minimize the danger of creating pressurized flow. The patent-pending RedLine AFR Backflow Mechanical Seal can be installed by hand, creating a perfectly symmetrical, watertight connection and preventing over-tightening or under-tightening during installation. “The RedLine AFR Roof Drain is revolutionary in that it lets contractors install watertight, maximum allowable flow drains in half the time it would take to insert new drains and a fraction of the time it would take to rework or replace the drains,” said Dan Genovese, product manager with OMG Roofing Products. “Installation is tool-free and can be done in a single turn with two fingers, increasing productivity and accuracy. More important, the RedLine AFR Roof Drain is engineered to get water off the roof at a flow rate consistent with the building’s internal plumbing system.” RedLine AFR is installed from the rooftop so as not to disrupt building occupants, and has a one-piece seamless body for strength and durability as well as a heavy-duty, cast-aluminum strainer dome and clamping ring. The 10-inch-long drain stem can accommodate most existing field conditions and can be field-cut or obtained in longer lengths if needed. An extra-large flange allows positive attachment of roof-flashing membrane, and flanges are available with TPO or PVC coatings for hot-air welding. Headquartered in Agawam, OMG Roofing Products is North America’s largest manufacturer of commercial roofing products, featuring specialty fasteners, insulation adhesives, drains, pipe supports, emergency-repair tape, edge-metal systems, and productivity tools.

Fairview Hospital Lauded for Patient Experience
GREAT BARRINGTON — Fairview Hospital has been recognized with a 2013 Outstanding Patient Experience Award by Healthgrades, a leading online provider of comprehensive information about physicians and hospitals. Fairview Hospital was one of nine hospitals in Massachusetts to receive this distinction, and the only hospital so recognized in Western Mass., ranking among the top 15% of all hospitals that were evaluated. The Outstanding Patient Experience Award recognizes the high performance of hospitals that have been evaluated by their patients in surveys collected after their discharge from the hospital by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). “Berkshire Health Systems is proud of the exceptional care that is being provided to our patients in South Berkshire by Fairview Hospital,” said David Phelps, president and CEO of BHS. “The consistent level of high-quality care that Fairview’s physicians, nurses, and staff give to their patients is clearly reflected in the survey results for which this award is based. Fairview patients repeatedly relay their positive experiences, and BHS and Fairview are committed to maintaining that level of excellence.”

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