Framingham State and MassBay Celebrate MetroWest College Planning Center Grand Opening

Framingham State and MassBay Celebrate MetroWest College Planning Center Grand Opening

Sep 18, 2015

State and local officials gathered on the campus of Framingham State University on September 17th to celebrate the grand opening of a new center dedicated to making the promise of a college education attainable to everyone.

The MetroWest College Planning Center is a partnership between Framingham State and MassBay Community College that is aimed at enhancing college readiness, participation and completion among underserved student populations and non-traditional adult learners in the region. Services provided to students and families at the center include comprehensive financial counseling support, educational resources, and one-on-one advising and mentoring.

The center is located in the historic 1812 House off Salem End Road, which was recently renovated.

“It is fitting that we have a place rooted in so much history to launch us into the future,” said Framingham State President F. Javier Cevallos. “We’re going to be changing the lives of a lot of young people.”

The opening of the center was made possible through grants provided by the Department of Higher Education’s Vision Project Incentive Fund. Framingham State also received a generous donation from the Sudbury Foundation to fund the development of a strategic marketing plan for the center, and to evaluate the program after one year.

“This is especially exciting because the center represents a collaborative effort and collective vision from two campuses coming together to benefit local communities,” said Cynthia Orellana, assistant commissioner for Access & Success Strategies at the Department of Higher Education.

“I’m thankful to the FSU team for coming together and making this center a reality,” added Yves Solomon-Fernandez, interim president at MassBay Community College. “This is the beginning of a long relationship we want to have with FSU and our community partners.”

Colleen Coffey, who up until now had been overseeing the College Planning Center without a building to work out of, says her team has already reached 2,300 people in the community.

“When we launched this center, we knew we needed someone with the energy, passion, talent and commitment to make it a reality,” said President Cevallos. “From day one, Colleen took this position and ran with it.”

Among those present at the grand opening ceremony were State Reps. Tom Sannicandro and Chris Walsh, who advocated for money to renovate the 1812 house when it was slated for demolition.

“When you think about the new use of this building and its long history, it’s a beautiful combination,” said Walsh. “I’m happy to have played a small part.”

To learn more about the MetroWest College Planning Center, visit

About Framingham State University

Framingham State University was founded in 1839 as the nation’s first public university for the education of teachers. Since that time, it has evolved into a vibrant, comprehensive liberal arts institution offering small, personalized classes on a beautiful New England campus. Today, the University enrolls more than 6,000 students with 58 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in the arts, humanities, sciences, social sciences and professional fields. As a State College and University (SCU), Framingham State prides itself on quality academic programs, affordability, and commitment to access for all qualified students.