HOLYOKE, Massachusetts (WGGB) — Holyoke’s new transportation center on Maple Street is not only a transportation hub. It’s a technology hub too. The Thomas Gill Community Technology Center is the centerpiece. It’s designed to help create new opportunities for people in Holyoke and the neighboring communities.
George Kohout co-ordinates the center for Holyoke Community College. He calls the center the last little piece of the puzzle in order to help many folks in Holyoke move up the economic ladder a little bit, get some education, get some training and jobs that are coming on line in Holyoke as it keeps moving forward.
The Gill Technology Center offers free or low cost basic computer and software classes in English and Spanish. But the center offers even more. Kohout says, “It’s really a need of services like this, especially free services, inexpensive services. This facility here combines both day care services, transportation because of the bus station and the college classes upstairs, plus the free adult classes.”
The center is a part of Holyoke Community College and is named after Thomas Gill, the third, a former member of the college’s information technology staff. Kohout says,
“His family recognizing Tom’s kind of commitment to technology and to students, said okay, let’s use Tom’s estate to help fund this is downtown Holyoke and keep his legacy going.”
The tech center is a big part of the revitalization of downtown Holyoke. Kohout hopes this kind of new technology training hooks up with other initiatives in Holyoke like the green computing center downtown that’s coming on line in a couple of years.
Classes are held every day, with evening classes during the week. They’ll be tweaking the hours here to meet the needs of the people who use the center.
For more information go to http://www.hcc.edu.