New England Center for Arts & Technology (NECAT) provides programs to engage and inspire disadvantaged youth and adults who are unemployed, underemployed, or transitioning from public assistance programs through tuition-free, hands-on arts and job training programs. NECAT’s mission is that their students experience fulfillment and strengthened personal identities from their contributions to the community and become seen as assets rather than liabilities.
NECAT was inspired by Manchester Bidwell in Pittsburgh and its innovative founder, Bill Strickland, who visited Boston to speak at the ribbon cutting on October 11, 2013. See The Art Connection’s images from the event here, and read the press release about the grand opening event.
The space is located in Boston’s Newmarket district and includes a commercial kitchen and a culinary teaching auditorium, which will form an integral part of NECAT’s first job-training program – Culinary Arts. In addition, NECAT will provide students with job skills training and job placement assistance. These programs will be free of tuition cost to students and will assist local adults, age 17 and older. “Artwork donated through The Art Connection has dramatically enhanced our Center,” shared Maarten Hemsley, NECAT’s founder and chair, “The process of selecting the artwork was professionally managed and was an exciting opportunity for our team to participate in making a permanent difference at the Center.”
The next phase of education at NECAT will be after school arts programming and medical technology. NECAT will work alongside the Boston Public Schools system and its partners to develop after-hours arts programs to motivate local urban teens to realize their full educational potential.
Artwork has been installed in the library, classroom, hallways, and other common spaces. The Art Connection is very happy to partner with NECAT to help the organization fulfill the philosophy of Bill Strickland that “Environment Shapes Behavior”. “Artwork donated through The Art Connection is helping us to fulfill our mission of creating a world-class environment for our students,” Hemsley said.
Visit http://www.ne-cat.org/ to learn more.