AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) - Governor Deval Patrick was in Amherst on Thursday to announce some big money for healthcare and education that he hopes will stimulate our economy.
Patrick announced a $100 million grant for life science-related projects in western Massachusetts; most of which, some $95 million, will go to UMass Amherst's Life Science Center.
Mike Malone, UMass Vice Chancellor for Research and Engagement, said that this going to be of huge benefit to them.
"We're going to spend a big fraction of this on equipment, and to fit out the shell space we've constructed. That equipment is going to enable people to write proposals, get educated, learn cutting-edge technology, it's just, it's a game changer for us," Malone said.
$5.5 million will go to the Pioneer Valley Life Sciences Institute , which is a partnership between UMass and Baystate Medical Center in Springfield. The center will be used to analyze health data.
"Physicians of all sorts will be able to make the best-quality decisions that they can make on how to treat a patient, how to do it in the most cost-effective way," said Steve Bradley, Vice President of Government Affairs for Baystate Health.
Governor Patrick says that education and healthcare are economic drivers that will not only boost the economy, but make western Massachusetts a more attractive place to live.
"Jobs and quality of life keep people around, and making the schools really sing for all families of all corners of the Commonwealth," Patrick said.
"That's a growth strategy and a winning one, its a great way to retain people as well."
These investments are being made under the Massachusetts Life Sciences Initiative, which was signed into law in 2008.