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MassBay Community College Unveils State-of-the-Art Center for Health Sciences, Early Childhood, and Human Services in Framingham

Tuesday, January 30, 2024


Liz Cooper


MassBay Framinghan building at night, close up MassBay Community College Center for Health Sciences, Early Childhood, and Human Services, located at 490 Franklin Street, Framingham, MA, opened the doors to students in the spring 2024, Framingham, MA, December 2023 (Photo/Ethan Gordon Photography).


WELLESLEY HILLS, Mass. (January 30, 2024) — MassBay Community College proudly announces the completion of its latest milestone with the opening of the Center for Health Sciences, Early Childhood, and Human Services. This 68,500-square-foot, four-story facility is a net zero energy-ready building with state-of-the-art equipment and labs designed to prepare the workforce of tomorrow. This Center marks the first building constructed for the College since its establishment in 1961.

“The Center stands as a beacon of progress and innovation, representing a culmination of a nearly 33-year journey for MassBay Community College,” said MassBay President David Podell. “Unlike previous buildings, this one has been designed from the ground up to meet the College’s programmatic needs, symbolizing a new era in academic excellence. Our doors are open to everybody, meaning everybody has a chance to move up economically in the world and bring their family with them.”

Academic Excellence
The Center for Health Sciences, Early Childhood, and Human Services will serve as a vital academic hub in MetroWest, featuring a variety of existing and new academic programs. The program offerings will produce skilled professionals to address urgent regional workforce needs in healthcare, elementary education, behavioral health, social work, and more. MassBay academic programs that will be housed in the Center:

Health Sciences

Associate in Science Degree Programs

  • Diagnostic Medical Sonography*
  • General Studies: Health Sciences*
  • Nursing
  • Paramedicine*
  • Radiologic Technology (Day and Flex)
  • Surgical Technology

Certificate Programs

  • Behavioral Health Technician
  • Central Processing Technology
  • Computed Tomography
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
  • Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)
  • Medical Coding
  • Medical Office Administrative Assistant
  • Paramedicine (Day and Evening)
  • Phlebotomy
  • Practical Nursing 
  • Practical Nursing (Evening Option)*
  • Sonography*

Education & Human Services
Associate in Arts Degree Programs

  • Early Childhood Education
  • Elementary Education
  • Human Services

Associate in Science Degree Program

  • Behavioral Health*
  • Early Childhood Education

Certificate Programs

  • Direct Support
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Human Services
  • Infant-Toddler Teacher
  • Substance Abuse

Non-Credit Programs

  • Behavioral Health Technician

*Programs anticipated to begin in the fall of 2024 or 2025

Building Design Features
MassBay’s Center is a four-story, 68,500-square-foot facility with 12 classrooms, ten active-learning labs, student support, and faculty and staff offices. The active-learning labs include the following:

  • Accredited Simulation Center with human simulators, four patient rooms and areas: hospital, apartment, labor and delivery and pediatric room, two computerized control rooms, and two debriefing rooms
  • Immersive Lab (where learners experience fully immersive training environments as they interact through sights, sounds, smells, and touch with the healthcare environment)
  • Energized and non-energized x-ray lab and full body imaging phantom, PIXY, an anatomical and radiological phantom that is a repeatable, convenient substitution for patients
  • Central Processing Technology Lab
  • Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ultrasound) Lab
  • Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT) Lab with simulated back of the ambulance
  • Medical Assistant and Phlebotomy Labs
  • Paramedicine Lab with a Simulated Mobile Unit
  • Surgical Technology operating room lab with two operating room bays

The construction of the building includes 85 windows and 20 curtainwalls, 212,3900 bricks (3 bricks per 64 sq. inches), 2,278 cubic yards of concrete, and 410 tons of steel. The total construction consisted of 71,000 total man-hours.

Environmental Design Features
The MassBay Center is a green building that is net-zero-energy ready and tracking for LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certification. The facility is designed to conserve energy, water, and resources, providing a healthy environment for learning while generating as much energy as it consumes each year. When walking throughout the campus, green placards explain the environmental details. Some of the green designs are:

  • Solar panel canopy in the parking lot, with additional solar panels on the roof to convert sunlight into electrical energy. Over a year, the panels can produce as much energy as the building consumes.
  • Almost 95% of the steel frame of the building is recycled materials, as are many of the aluminum window frames.
  • The flooring throughout the building is biodegradable and made from natural and renewable materials such as linseed oil, flax, pulverized wood, jute, and cork dust. The drywall even includes recycled content. This project did not use materials, glues, and coatings that discharge harmful chemicals into the indoor environment.
  • Below the 426 parking spaces in the parking lot, 36 geo-wells extend 500 feet into the ground, where the earth is at a steady temperature year-round. In the heating season, the round-source heat pump loop exchanges heat with the warmer earth. When the temperature rises and cooling is needed, the loop transfers heat from the building into the cooler ground.
  • The building walls contain multiple layers of mineral-fiber insulation and have been tested for air tightness.
  • The windows have three layers of glass to let light in while protecting the interior from summer heat and the winter cold.
  • The patterns printed on the glass and metal louvers attached to the windows help protect from glare while allowing in daylight. A vacancy sensor controls the light-enclosed rooms. In spaces unoccupied for 15 minutes, the lights will shut off. In areas with significant daylight contribution, a photosensor on the ceiling controls the amount of synthetic light.
  • Electric vehicle charging stations are installed in the parking lot, with conduit and capacity for additional stations to be installed as demand rises. 
  • Rainwater runoff from the roof and paved surfaces is filtered and cleaned by plants and soils in the stormwater garden. Rather than rainwater running into the Sudbury River or the Framingham storm drains, the garden recharges the water table and prevents flooding. 

MassBay broke ground on the Center in September 2021 and welcomed students on January 22, 2024. The Massachusetts Department of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance oversaw the project. The building was designed by Sasaki, working with Studio Enée and constructed by Lee Kennedy Co.

Ninety percent of the funding for the building was provided by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, with the remaining funds raised from the U.S. Economic Development Administration, foundations, and private donors. The total cost of the building and equipment was $62.7 million.


MassBay Community College is the most affordable higher education option in MetroWest Boston, offering a robust portfolio of courses and more than 70 associate degree and certificate programs with flexible day, evening, and weekend classes in Ashland, Framingham, Wellesley Hills, and online. MassBay students receive an unmatched educational value by earning stackable credits that transfer to bachelor’s degree programs, and workforce-ready skills necessary to advance careers in high-demand fields such as health and life sciences, automotive technology, engineering, business, cybersecurity, and the humanities. MassBay’s Associate Degree in Nursing (RN) and Practical Nursing (LPN) programs were both ranked as the #1 Nursing Program in Massachusetts in 2020-2021 by national nursing advocacy organizations, and Since its founding in 1961, MassBay has been accredited by several governing bodies and remains firmly committed to its mission of meeting the needs of the diverse local communities it serves. We value the intrinsic worth of all individuals, collectively in pursuit of inclusiveness and prioritize our work towards achieving equity within our community and beyond.