Press Release

Bunker Hill Community College and Phoenix Charter Academy Receive Gateway Cities Innovation Award

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

The “Phoenix-Bunker Hill Partnership”—Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) and partner Phoenix Charter Academy—was recognized with a 2016 Gateway Cities Innovation Award at the fourth annual MassINC Gateway Cities Innovation Awards. The awards ceremony was held on November 15, 2016, at the MassMutual Center in Springfield, Massachusetts.

BHCC and Phoenix Charter Academy Receive 
Gateway Cities Innovation Award
The Phoenix-Bunker Hill Partnership was one of only three recipients of the award, which recognizes organizations engaged in workforce development transformation in the Commonwealth’s Gateway Cities. The Partnership was recognized for the learning lab they are creating in Chelsea, Massachusetts, one of the state’s Gateway Cities. The lab will be located in the College’s Bellingham Square Chelsea Campus building.

“Bunker Hill Community College has been a longstanding presence in the City of Chelsea,” said BHCC President Pam Eddinger. “We are proud to continue to serve the community’s youth in new ways through this partnership with Phoenix Charter Academy.”

Due to the popularity and subsequent expansion of the College’s Chelsea Campus course offerings, the College announced this year that the Chelsea Campus will relocate to its fourth location in Chelsea in January 2017. The historic Bellingham Square Campus will serve as the location for the Phoenix-Bunker Hill Partnership. Community education courses and programs will continue to be held there in the evenings.

The Phoenix Network operates three college preparatory alternative high schools that provide rigorous academic environments for off-track teens and young adults who want to earn high school degrees and attend college. Phoenix Academy Public Charter High School Chelsea will share space with Bunker Hill Community College in the College’s Bellingham Square campus, working closely with at-risk students to provide a high-support, high-expectation college pathway program.

“I consider myself an innovator on behalf of students,” said Phoenix Charter Academy Founder & CEO Beth Anderson. “I’m excited to partner with fellow innovator Pam Eddinger and Bunker Hill Community College to study how we can increase college persistence and completion rates with disengaged young people.”

MassINC is a public policy think tank uniting non-partisan research, civic journalism and independent polling, committed to expanding and supporting Massachusetts’ middle class. MassINC was built around the conviction that better outcomes would be achieved if policy makers and opinion leaders were armed with credible data and analysis about key issues surrounding quality of life in Massachusetts.

Bunker Hill Community College is the largest community college in Massachusetts. The College enrolls more than 14,000 students on two campuses and at three satellite locations. BHCC is one of the most diverse institutions of higher education in Massachusetts. Sixty-four percent of the students are people of color and more than half of BHCC's students are women. The College also enrolls nearly 1000 international students who come from 107 countries and speak more than 75 languages.

Founded on the central belief that dropping out of school is preventable for even the most disengaged and off-track students, and that these students can achieve at high levels given the right conditions, Phoenix Charter Academy Chelsea opened its door to 75 students in 2006. Ten years later, the Phoenix Network now serves over 500 students across the state, operating three schools: two Commonwealth charter schools in Chelsea (opened 2006) and Springfield (opened September 2014) and an in-district school in Lawrence (opened 2012). With over 200 alumnae, the Phoenix model breaks the mold and our results reflect this; 100% of graduates have been accepted to college and our students have historically outperformed most sending public school districts on the MCAS assessments.


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About Bunker Hill Community College
With more than 50 years of academic excellence, Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) is Massachusetts' largest community college, annually welcoming a diverse community of around 16,000 students. With campuses in Charlestown and Chelsea, BHCC extends its reach across several locations in Greater Boston. The College offers associate degrees and certificates, early college and dual enrollment, community education, corporate training, and industry-specific training programs. BHCC is celebrated for its diversity, boasting a student body where 65% identify as people of color and more than half are women. The College also embraces a global perspective, with over 600 international students representing 90 countries and conversing in more than 65 languages. Our commitment to diversity is further reflected in BHCC's designation as a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) and an Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institution (AANAPISI).