terça-feira, setembro 01, 2009

Ponta Delgada mayor visits BCC

Berta Cabral, mayor of Ponta Delgada in the Azores, visited Bristol Community College Thursday, where she met with college and community leaders who have helped form a partnership between the islands and the college.Fall River, Cabral said, is the most important city outside the islands for Azoreans, and BCC is the college where most Azorean immigrants attend school. BCC is home to LusoCentro, where Portuguese documents are kept and programs held, including a course that teaches interpretation skills to help students find jobs in hospitals or courthouses as interpreters. BCC President Jack Sbrega, who was one of 50 area delegates and college leaders to visit the Azores last year, said Fall River and Ponta Delgada — sister cities — are “contiguous psychologically.” Cabral was invited to the area by Fernando Garcia to celebrate the annual Feast of the Holy Ghost this weekend. Garcia, a businessman and Portuguese community leader, was presented with the Distinguished Citizen Award in May at BCC’s graduation ceremony. Garcia thanked Cabral for her “unconditional support.”While in the city Thursday, Cabral also toured the new cancer treatment center at Charlton Memorial Hospital.A class of eight BCC art students spent two weeks in the Azores in June to use the islands’ architecture, culture, food and landscape for inspiration for art they will create for a gallery this winter. Instructor Erik Durant, who went with the group, said one student has been working on a series of portraits of Azoreans he photographed. Another student is working on a graphic novel and one is creating a huge sculpture of a Portuguese Man-of-War. BCC and the University of the Azores signed an agreement in May 2008 to start a cultural and educational exchange program that includes student and faculty exchanges, mutual planning for study-abroad programs, shared research and teaching among faculty, and cooperation on educational, economic and environmental initiatives.The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, which has a Portuguese-American archives center and a Center for Portuguese Studies and Culture, signed a similar exchange program with the University of the Azores.

(in Grant Welker at http://gwelker@heraldnews.com./ - The Herald News)