Cowan, with members of the graduating class of 2010. ▲ colleges to make people realize that community colleges are proven providers, a value proposition for businesses, and vested partners that have a stake in the ongoing positive economic development of our state.” The Business and Industry arm of the college has led to successful long-term relationships with industry leaders such as Raytheon, Verizon, National Grid, the U.S. Department of Defense, Hanscom Air Force Base, the Millipore Corporation, M/A-Com, the Titan Corporation, and the Lahey Clinic. In 2010, MCC’s Business and Industry Division, with Cowan’s guidance, joined forces with Northern Essex Community College, which has campuses in Lawrence and Haverhill, just down the highway from MCC’s Lowell campus. Together, the two colleges helped create the Merrimack Valley Partners for Progress, an alliance focused on forging closer college and corporate relationships. The Partners are dedicated to promoting economic development in the region by building awareness of the wealth of customized, cost-effective education and training programs. The college’s business partnerships continue to reap benefits, even today. Most recently, in November 2010, MCC was one of eight community colleges recognized for training students with the skills and experiences needed to enter the burgeoning biotechnology industry. MCC received the gold level designation because of its internship programs in the biotech field. The award was bestowed by the Massachusetts Life Science Education Consortium. “As a college, we continuously need to evolve,” said Cowan. “In today’s economy, we can’t stand still. That holds true for what we offer our business partners, but also what we provide to our credited students as well. Our students are changing, our communities are changing, our world is changing. Middlesex needs to always be a leader and be a responsive, affordable and accessible provider of an expansive spectrum of educational opportunities to the communities we serve. As president, it’s been my job to make sure we always hit that target.” 81