Centers & Institutes

  • Center for Business and Industry

    Providing Learning and Development Programs

    The Center for Business and Industry at Worcester State University is committed to enhancing the skills of individuals in our communities and employees in our partner organizations. We deliver training on site at companies, online, on WSU's campus, or a combination.

    We offer both credit and non-credit training. We can customize solutions to fit your unique business needs. We will meet with you to understand your business goals and challenges. When you partner with us, we will work with you closely throughout the implementation of your training plan. We also offer open enrollment programming on campus that is accessible to individuals and businesses.

    Your partnership with us extends beyond our workforce training sessions. You can rely on us for additional training, and we can provide access to event-sponsorship opportunities and WSU's student and alumni talent pool to fill open positions or internships at your organization.

  • Training Options

    The Center for Business and Industry offers training on a variety of topics and skills, including:

    • Business writing
    • Communication skills
    • Customer service/relations
    • Everything DiSC® (authorized partner)
    • Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team® (authorized partner)
    • Leadership
    • Management and supervisory skills
    • Microsoft Office applications
    • Performance management
    • Presentation skills
    • Project management
    • StrengthsFinder assessment and training
    • Team building
    • Time management
    • Workplace English
    • Workplace Spanish
    Online Training Options

    Online Training

    For additional online offerings, visit our landing pages below:

    Leadership and Management Certificate Series

    Hiring and promoting managers who can effectively lead their staff is vital for strong employee engagement and retention. A manager’s effectiveness can be improved by developing competencies in key areas.

    The Center for Business and Industry offers a Leadership and Management Certificate Series to fill your leadership-skills gap. The program features day and evening sessions taught at the WSU campus. The affordable cost makes the series perfect for companies that need training for a few employees and individuals who are unemployed or underemployed.

    The series can also be brought on site to your organization and can be customized to meet your specific business needs.

    • Series I: Management Roles and Responsibilities, Discovering Your Strengths, Management Styles, Effective Communication, Performance Management
    • Series II: Team Building and Teamwork, Conflict Resolution, Critical and Creative Thinking, Time Management
    Workplace English

    We deliver training in English for speakers of other languages on-site at your location to meet your organization’s needs. On-campus training is also available, if preferred.

    Our training is taught at beginner, intermediate, and advanced levels. Each category includes instruction in the 4 language skills: speaking, reading, writing, and listening.

    The center will administer an assessment to all participants in order to determine their skill level. This will ensure participants are placed in the appropriate category. Organizations can determine whether one or multiple categories of English will be taught to accommodate participants.

    The curriculum is customized to meet specific organization needs and includes work-related topics and vocabulary presented at the appropriate level. The center works closely with each organization to gain insight and materials (manuals, forms, charts) that can be incorporated into the curriculum to increase the relevance and effectiveness of the training.


    • Increased understanding of job requirements
    • Increased production accuracy
    • Improved communication with supervisors and coworkers
    • Increased understanding of instructions and manuals
    • Improved employee morale and retention
    • Reduction in translation, which speeds up processes
    Workplace Spanish

    As the number of Latinos in the workplace and in our communities increases, many organizations have identified a need to train their supervisors and staff to speak Spanish. The Center for Business and Industry has a group of experienced, proven trainers who meet this need.

    Our Spanish as a Foreign Language instructors work with management and supervisory employees and staff to identify the specific needs and terminology to be included in the training. The classes and the curriculum can be tailored to the needs of your business.

    Access Grant Funds for Training

    The CBI can help you access needed training funds

    Annually, 187,000 Massachusetts businesses pay to fund the Workforce Training Fund. In turn, each year the Workforce Training Fund awards approximately $21 million in grant money to help businesses train employees, enhance skills, and learn new skills. The experienced staff of Worcester State University’s Center for Business and Industry has worked with 50+ Massachusetts companies to access millions in training funds, and we wish to extend these services to you, and your company, free of charge.

    CBI’s Commitment to You
    When your company agrees to contract with us for all your training needs resulting from a grant submission, the CBI will provide the following services to your company for free:

    • Training needs assessment
    • Training plan design
    • Trainer choice options
    • Preferred trainer status
    • Grant writing assistance
    • Approved grant management
    • In-depth grant reporting assistance

    Please know CBI staff have worked on many successful grant initiatives with companies of the commonwealth, and our Consultative Easy Step system (outlined above) has resulted in companies pursuing many consecutive grants through us, because we take on the most challenging parts of grant writing and management.

    The CBI will make your grant experience as Easy as 1-2-3!

    Step 1: Complete CBI’s online grants service agreement
    Complete the agreement to access the CBI’s free grant writing assistance. Please know this is a zero risk commitment, since only you can “click” submit of the final application, you can cancel a grant application any time before submitting, and your company will not be billed. Additionally, if your grant is one of the rare applications we have championed that is NOT approved, your company owes the CBI nothing.

    Step 2: The CBI will assess your company’s training needs
    Before we can write a competitive grant, the professional trainers and educators of the CBI will design a training program that meets your training needs and that of your staff. To make this assessment easy, the CBI offers you this link to free online training needs assessment that can be completed in an average of only 5 minutes time per employee, and can be easily distributed to your whole company via an email, or even text message. After we collect the initial data from this survey, CBI staff will meet with your leadership team to share the data, and prioritize your training needs for greatest return on your investment of time and company resources, aligning them with your company’s strategic vision.

    Step 3: Provide information needed to complete your grant application
    Once we begin working on a grant on your company’s behalf, the CBI will forward your designated company liaison three successive online surveys, each with only a few questions, and each including sample responses and recommendations for crafting rough draft answers. The short answers provided by your liaison will enable us to gather critical information about your company’s training needs, goals, and measurable outcomes, all essential to our grant writers crafting a competitive grant application consistent with our staff’s 96% grant approval rating.

    Let the Center for Business and Industry do all the heavy lifting to get the training funds your organization needs to take your company, and employees, to the next level of business success with the training your company needs!

    Contact us at 508-929-8787 today!

    Pathway to College Program – UMass Memorial Health Care

    If you are a caregiver at UMass Memorial Health Care, the Pathway to College Program supports  you in achieving your career and academic goals. It provides 9 college credits and the foundation needed to enter a wide variety of undergraduate degree programs, including health education, nursing, business, psychology, occupational studies, and sociology.

    Classes are held onsite at UMMHC, one night per week, over a 9-month period.

    There are minimal up-front costs, and up to 80% of program costs are covered through tuition benefits.*

    You'll learn alongside UMMHC peers and receive individual academic advising and guidance from experienced instructors.

    Download the flyer for schedule and contact information.

    If you are interested in this program, please complete and submit the online inquiry form

    *Full- and part-time employees represented by a collective bargaining agreement should reference the agreement for specific guidelines.