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A program at Massasoit Community College that assists first-year students as they transition into college was granted $30,000 from the Harold Brooks Foundation to help strengthen and sustain it for the next two years. The Latch Academic Support Program offers a mix of academic advising and counseling, peer tutoring, and mentoring to create a tight-knit learning community in which Massasoit students learn together and from one another.

Latch Program welcome in 2017

“Thanks to the Harold Brooks Foundation, we will be able to continue peer tutoring and mentoring for at-risk students,” said Latch Program Coordinator Heather Baccchiocchi. “We are delighted to receive funding for the next two years, ensuring that participating students will receive the resources they need to succeed as they begin their journeys at Massasoit and in higher education.”

For nearly 50 years, Latch has provided students with intensive, proactive academic advising while developing their reading, writing, mathematics, and study skills. Latch welcomes students who have tested into one or more developmental courses, those who have not been satisfied with their academic experiences in the past, and students who may have been away from school for a long period of time.

Academic counselors work with Latch students to set academic and career goals and ensure that students’ areas of study align with those goals and maintain close contact with professors, providing a way for the team to address academic issues if they arise during the school year. Students enrolled in Latch consistently earn some of the highest success and graduation rates at Massasoit, and many of the tutors and mentors are former students from the program.

The Harold Brooks Foundation provides assistance to causes and organizations that help residents of Massachusetts’ South Shore communities and focuses on five key areas: education; food, agriculture & nutrition; health; housing & shelter; and mental health. Harold Brooks, of Braintree, Massachusetts, was a successful business executive and entrepreneur who manufactured and sold prefabricated structures and underground bomb shelters during the Cold War. Brooks died in 1963, and the Foundation that bears his name was established in 1984.

“The Harold Brooks Foundation recognizes that Latch provides a great, effective service to Massasoit students who may need additional help to succeed,” said Associate Dean for Student Success Joe Harris. “We’re grateful for their support of education and Massasoit.”

For more information, visit the Latch Academic Support Program’s webpage or call 508-588-9100 extension 1070.