WESTFIELD — Westfield State University was included in community project funds secured by U.S. Rep. Richard Neal. Of the $20,367,800 included in the final 2023 appropriations government-funding package for the 1st Congressional District of Massachusetts, $1 million will go toward supporting Westfield State University’s training capacity for nursing and health science students and providing a space for healthcare practitioners from both academia and practice sectors to explore, design, and prototype solutions to current healthcare gaps.
“The funding appropriated for Westfield State University’s nursing program will create opportunities to reverse a nursing-shortage trend that has impacted a wide swath of our region,” university President Linda Thompson said. “The critical, smart, and necessary move by Congress, led by House Ways and Means Chairman Richard E. Neal, will lead to the creation of systems that will reinforce and strengthen the health of the population. Westfield State University is eager to continue collaborating with the healthcare community to provide top-level services to our communities.”
Funding will be used to expand and enhance Westfield State’s simulation spaces, including the development of a new ‘Easy Street’ simulation space that will allow healthcare students to apply concepts of home-based and community care in their learning.
“I am proud to have secured $20,367,800 in community project funding in this bill that I know meets long-overdue community needs in Massachusetts’s First Congressional District,” Neal said. “From North Adams to Dudley, I have partnered with community leaders to explore ways in which a robust investment in federal dollars could best be allocated. These investments create jobs with better pay, make us safer, strengthen our communities, and start to tackle climate change.”
The 12-bill government-funding program has passed the House and Senate and will now go to President Biden’s desk for his signature.