Sports for the week of 8.31.14

Sports for the week of August 31

Please click on the link above to see schedule

To the BHR family–

The Athletic Department would like to welcome the Blue
Hills family back to school.

Please see the the document above for this week’s sporting events. All are welcome to watch our student athletes compete during the fall season.

Best of luck to all the new instructors and staff.

Have a safe day,
The Athletic Dept.



To the BHR Family–

The Fall sports programs have already started and with the Golf team and Freshman football starting on Monday the 25th, BHR sports are all underway.

There will be weekly schedules and updates each week on the BHR website.  Check the pages for each sport under the ATHLETICS tab on the home page.

The BHR Athletic Department would like to wish everyone a great year in school. To the new staff members, welcome to the BHR family.  BHR is truly a great school.

Above you will find this week’s sports schedule.
Have  a safe day,
BHR Athletics
Posted in Uncategorized

BHR Grad Michael Riley ’13 Organizes and Hosts Wishing Well Gala to Benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Mass. and R.I. on October 25, 2014 at Lombardo’s in Randolph

Blue Hills Grad Michael Riley ’13

By Judy Bass

Most nineteen-year-olds are busy working or going to school, leading a hectic social life, and trying to figure out their place in this complex, topsy-turvy world.

Michael Riley is doing all that, plus making wishes come true for seriously ill children.

This remarkable young man is the host and chief organizer of the Wishing Well Gala to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Massachusetts and Rhode Island on Saturday, October 25, 2014 at Lombardo’s, at 6 Billings St. in Randolph.

The heartfelt passion in Riley’s voice spills over when he describes what it means to him to put smiles on the faces of youngsters facing life-threatening medical crises.

Riley, a Holbrook resident and 2013 graduate of Blue Hills Regional Technical School in Canton, where he studied Culinary Arts, is unstinting in his efforts for deserving kids.  Even though he works full-time at the Olive Garden restaurant in Stoughton as a server, host, trainer, and orders to-go specialist, he said it’s not unusual for him to come home after his shift ends, roll up his sleeves and then get to work masterminding this gala, sometimes until 3 am if necessary.

“It means everything to me,” Riley explained with characteristic modesty and enthusiasm.  “It’s an honor to be a part of this.  I want to do as much as I can because I can do it.”

The gala, which begins at 7:00 pm and ends at midnight, costs $60 per person, or $500 for a table of 10 people.  Tickets are available by going to  Interested parties are asked to purchase tickets by the second week in October if possible.  Dinner, which begins at 8:00 pm, will feature oven-baked cod, red-wine braised short ribs, oven-baked ziti, and a dessert display.  There will also be a silent auction and raffles.  Riley can be contacted by calling 781-917-4193 or by email at

This particular event is not Riley’s first foray into humanitarian endeavors.  In 2011, he ran a breast cancer fundraiser that raised $2,000.   The following year, Riley helmed a Toys for Tots fundraiser that generated some 500 toys for “children who aren’t so fortunate and lack what people take for granted.”

Riley’s maturity and character, as well as his wisdom and insight into the plight of sick youngsters and their families, are truly striking given his age.  So is his refusal to seek accolades for himself.

“It’s not for me,” he insisted, “it’s for Make-A-Wish.  This is for the greater picture, and it’s for the kids.”

He’s aiming for a total of $15,000 in proceeds from the gala, enough to grant two children’s wishes.  “It’ll be the happiest day for me [if that happens],” Riley declared.

Blue Hills Regional played a major role in stoking his desire to be active philanthropically.  Riley was a member of the school’s chapter of the National Honor Society (NHS), whose advisor, English teacher Rebecca Ray, exhorted him to follow his heart.

“She was kind of a mentor,” said Riley.  “She told me there is no limit, I could do whatever I want if I tried hard enough.”

Under Ray’s energetic guidance, NHS students at Blue Hills Regional have run humanitarian events like “Cuts for a Cure” to raise funds and awareness about cancer by having participants shave their heads to indicate solidarity with cancer patients or donate money, as well as “Crutches for Africa,” a drive held in conjunction with the Dedham-based Neponset Valley Sunrise Rotary Club to collect crutches and other devices that help people in Africa with ambulatory difficulties who may not have access to these much-needed items.

Speaking of those successful examples of outreach for charitable purposes, Riley said, “It gave me hope that you can do this and raise a good amount of money.”

It’s clear that his “I met Mikey Riley in 2009,” said Ray. “What was particularly special about [his Toys for Tots drive] was that he single-handedly organized it, knocked on doors, wrote to family and friends, and used social media to collect over 500 toys. Since then Mikey hasn’t stopped.  In December 2012, he came to me and said, “I want to do more.” He remembered me speaking about Make-A-Wish and the impact it made on my family even after [my nephew] Brandon’s death and he began to look into ways to help. Gradually, he found more families he knew that had been affected by terminal illness and had their wishes granted. When he researched it, he learned that a typical wish costs about $7,500, so he came to me a year after he was in college and he said, “I want to hold a gala.” I encouraged him. After all, he was only seven years old when he opened up a neighborhood lemonade stand to raise money for a sick boy he knew, a story told to me by his mother.”

Ray continued, “With the formation of a committee, help from his friends and family, and again with his own tenacity, he is determined to succeed. At 19 years old with little guidance from adults, he has organized, contacted, and created every aspect of the evening to come with one goal – to grant two wishes.”

Riley’s esteem for the Blue Hills Regional staff is evident in the composition of the gala’s steering committee because three out of the six members are from the school: Ms. Ray; Spanish teacher Ms. Ana Peach; her husband, Joe Amador; Vocational Secretary Deborah Beane; Riley’s cousin, Jen Riley; and of course Riley himself.

As for the future, Riley isn’t quite sure what he wants to do career-wise.  After spending one semester at Johnson & Wales University in Providence, R.I., he decided to take online classes from Massasoit Community College.  He’s already an expert at one key skill – multi-tasking.

“It doesn’t get tiring,” Riley insisted when asked about his jam-packed schedule.  “I love doing it.”















Posted in Uncategorized

Serving Her Country with Courage and Distinction: BHR Graduate Mary Gallagher ’91

Mary Gallagher in Iraq.  Photo courtesy Mary Gallagher.

By Judy Bass

Sleeping in a tent under the night sky at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan in 2001, watching tracers cut a glittering path across the soaring darkness overhead, Mary Gallagher could hardly believe the whirlwind of international events that had taken her from her home in Massachusetts to this ancient, exotic land thousands of miles away.

“Oh, my God,” she recalls thinking, “this is for real.”

Her induction into the turbulent post-9/11 world had begun, an experience that would eventually bring Gallagher around the globe during 12 tours of duty in places such as England, Africa and Iraq as an intel analyst dealing with highly sensitive information for the US Air Force.

Gallagher, now 42, formerly a resident of Dedham who currently lives in Norwood, graduated from Blue Hills Regional Technical School in Canton in 1991, where she studied Graphic Communications.   A friend of her mother’s had suggested that she consider Blue Hills as a potential high school choice, so Gallagher took a tour of the school.

“I fell in love with it immediately,” she says, feeling that enrolling at this school could help her figure out what she wanted to do for a career and provide attractive options for her down the road professionally.

Her expectations, she said, were borne out by the practicality and value of the vocational training she received.  “I was head and shoulders over other kids getting out of high school,” Gallagher noted appreciatively, explaining that she had been well-educated at Blue Hills to handle responsibilities, develop a strong work ethic, communicate effectively with others, adhere to a dress code, and deal with a superior, all skills which would come in handy for Gallagher later on in the military.

After her graduation from Blue Hills, Gallagher said she worked in the Graphic Arts field, then spent a semester at Massasoit Community College, earned her associate’s degree from Quincy College, and got a degree in communications from Curry College in Milton.

In 2001, at the age of 27, Gallagher joined the Air Force so she could finish college under the provisions of the GI Bill.  Another factor in her desire to be involved in the military was a long-standing tradition of public service in her family.  Gallagher said that her brother was in the US Army, retired, then joined the CIA;  her father served in Korea; and her mother’s uncle was at Iwo Jima during World War II.

So Gallagher signed up, never anticipating being caught in the outbreak of military action in the Middle East as a result of the 9/11 attacks on the United States.

In fact, while she was at Westover Air Force Base in Chicopee, Mass., prior to 9/11 as a member of the Reserves, Gallagher recalls that she and others were told that the last time Westover was activated was decades ago, during the Korean War in the 1950s.  In accordance with peacetime requirements, Gallagher was only required to spend one weekend a month and two weeks out of the year participating.

That changed dramatically on an exquisitely clear September morning when two hijacked airliners struck the World Trade Center in New York, another crashed in Shanksville, Pa., and a fourth hit the Pentagon, killing 125 people in the iconic building, along with all the passengers, crew and hijackers aboard the plane.

(Gallagher’s brother was actually at the Pentagon that day, she said, but was fortunately uninjured.)

“For me,” said Gallagher, “it seems like yesterday.”  Westover, she remembered, quickly got a fateful phone call to alert everyone that the Pentagon had been hit, and a scramble ensued to watch the unimaginable news on TV.

A week later, Gallagher was activated.  Three weeks later, she was in Afghanistan.

Gallagher’s duties would culminate in a position in Mission Support for Air Force Special Command, which, at that time, Gallagher said, was comprised of only 30 people with the security clearance and the training to do the job.  Although she is still constrained, for security reasons, not to divulge details, Gallagher did say that she was part of a support group for Special Forces, and would brief SEALS, Rangers, and other “hard chargers” using classified and sensitive information.

She also worked for the National Security Space Office (NSSO), which handles highly classified information.

It wasn’t a breeze, Gallagher said candidly.  “You had to roll with the punches,” she explained.  She typically put in 17 to 20 grueling hours a day processing a lot of material, multi-tasking, thinking on her feet, and developing, of necessity, a thick skin so as not to take things personally in that high-stakes, breakneck-paced environment.

In 2009, Gallagher was wounded when she was in Baghdad a month before elections were held.  There was a hospital on the military base that was admitting casualties after a bomb had gone off in a bazaar.  So many seriously hurt people required immediate attention that everyone who was available pitched in to rush them into the medical facility.

Gallagher recalls a badly injured little girl she was helping during that desperate emergency amidst a fierce exchange of gunfire.  A massive explosion suddenly rocked the area, Gallagher was lifted right off her feet by the powerful blast, and the next thing she was aware of was waking up in a hospital in Germany, where she was treated for her injuries.

Gallagher returned to the United States at Christmas 2009 and retired from the Air Force in November 2012.

Being back home meant starting the process of recovering physically and emotionally from the high toll taken on her by military service during wartime.  One positive step Gallagher took toward restoring her health occurred when her sister got her involved in State Rep. Karyn Polito’s run for Massachusetts State Treasurer in 2010.  “It was the first time I enjoyed doing something [after my injury],” Gallagher said.

Polito, a candidate for Lieutenant Governor and the running mate of Republican gubernatorial candidate Charlie Baker, said in an email, “Mary is a kind and courageous person, with a rock-solid core.  She is someone you can always depend on to deliver on a promise.  She is a person of enormous strength and talent, and by her own example, inspired me each and every day to work my very best in my campaign for public office.  I admire Mary, and thank her for her service to our country.”

Coming from a politically-involved family, it was almost natural for Gallagher to jump in behind the scenes to again play a role.  Today, she works for Mass Victory, an arm of the Massachusetts Republican Party which helps GOP candidates.

Reflecting on her military service, Gallagher said, “I gave everything of myself.”  It was important to her to “serve a higher cause,” especially in the aftermath of 9/11.  There were certainly sacrifices she made along the way.  For example, her father died in 2005, while she was stationed in Germany.  Gallagher lost friends, she said; some of them will never be the same, like the one she movingly described who watched aghast as hijacked American Airlines Flight 77 swooped down before striking the Pentagon on 9/11 – so low, in fact, that he glimpsed the terror-stricken faces of the doomed passengers through the plane’s windows as they struggled to figure out their location in those last few moments before the horrific lethal impact.

As for herself, Gallagher expressed her pleasure at all the success Blue Hills Regional Technical School, her beloved alma mater, is having, and vowed to keep serving the community and the state in whatever capacity she can.

Right now, she feels home at last.













Posted in Uncategorized

BHR to expand its 1:1 Chromebooks initiative during the 2014-15 school year

Student Adina Jean of Canton, a rising sophomore, uses her Chromebook in the Drafting / CAD program.  Photo by Judy Bass.

By Judy Bass

Blue Hills Regional Technical School will provide all its students with Chromebook laptops, by grade, over a three-month period in the fall of 2014, Superintendent James P. Quaglia and Principal Jill M. Rossetti have announced.

“By Thanksgiving,” said Quaglia, “all students will have them in their hands.”

The first phase of the school’s 1:1 Chromebook initiative was successfully implemented during the 2013-14 school year, when all freshmen were given Chromebooks.

“We are excited about the possibilities for our students,” said Quaglia.  “This sets up apart from school districts that haven’t gone to a 1:1 environment” and that have a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policy for students, meaning that not everyone is using identical technological tools, a potential drawback due to security issues, for example.

“[What we are doing] is a one-size-fits-all approach that has a lot of capability,” Quaglia noted.  “Now, the computer lab is wherever the students are.”

“The students expected it,” he said.  “They were already into it, but not here [at school].”

Rossetti cited numerous educational benefits of giving Chromebooks to students, such as promoting student engagement in the learning process, greater ease of analyzing documents and creating presentations, doing research, writing, and facilitating collaboration between students.

“If a teacher pushed out notes [to the class] and you were absent,” said Rossetti, “you could get them from Google Drive.”

In addition, she pointed out that the next generation of important standardized tests such as PARCC (the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers), an exam for students in grades K-12 which measures their preparedness for higher education and the workplace, are computer-based.

Cost was a primary factor in the selection of this device for Blue Hills’ students.  Chromebooks also have a long battery life, they boot up quickly, are easy to manage, and have no internal memory, eliminating pitfalls like viruses.  Quaglia added that they have “full functionality,” allowing users to do whatever they would do on a desktop.

Noting the importance of supporting the school’s “digital learners,” he said that Chromebooks “are now indispensable tools” which will shift the model of how students learn away from the traditional “chalk and talk,” featuring the teacher at the blackboard in front of the class, to having the locus of control more in the students’ hands, especially because they will have the same tool as the teacher.

Using Chromebooks will allow students to cultivate good “digital citizenship,” said Rossetti.  They will hopefully develop a better understanding of what is appropriate to post online, and become more adept at discerning whether information they find on the Internet is reliable.

“Once deployed,” Quaglia said, “Phase 2 is enabling teachers to facilitate effective use [of the Chromebooks] by students.”  That might entail having them get together to brainstorm and idea-swap to share best practices and bring each other up to speed, he said.

Transitioning from textbooks to e-books is another step forward that’s likely at some point in the future, Quaglia said.  “Over time,” he explained, “[students’] backpacks are going to be getting thinner.”

“We’re going to prepare students for the 21st century,” said Rossetti, by having them creating thinking, and collaborating using Chromebooks.









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BHR Continuing Education Fall 2014

There are still openings available in some of our great Continuing Ed classes! Go to


There is still time to sign up for Continuing Education at Blue Hills. Log on to if the course is listed the course will run and there are still seats available. If your course is no longer there it either didn’t run or it is at full capacity. See the list of available courses below.

Thank you,

Dwight Seaman

Continuing Education Coordinator

Blue Hills Regional Technical School

800 Randolph Street

Canton, MA. 02021

phone: 781.828.5800×228

fax:       781.828.0794

cell:    339-237-8316



Modern Retirement Planning

Meet Microsoft Office

Free Home Buyer Seminar

CPR For Health Care Providers

First Aid

EMT Certification Preparation

Cosmetology 1000 Hour

Basic Framing and House Construction

Finish Carpentry

Automotive Refinishing

Auto Body

Auto Damage Appraisal License preparation course



Fall 2014 classes can be viewed and registered for by

Continuing Education Coordinator Dwight Seaman can be contacted at, by phone at 781-828-5800 x228, or by cell phone at 339-237-8316. Inquiries from the public are welcome.


Dwight Seaman

Continuing Education Coordinator
Blue Hills Regional Technical School
800 Randolph Street
CantonMA  02021
fax:       781.828.0794
cell:    339-237-8316

Blue Hills Cont Ed Brochure Fall 14 ds  Click here to see our exciting offerings for Fall!!

***And visit for more information.***

Blue Hills Continuing Education Mail in Registration  click here for form

Whether you are looking for personal enrichment, career enhancement, learning a new trade, or just having some fun, Blue Hills Regional’s Continuing Education programs are for you.  We have a wide variety of outstanding courses that appeal to many age levels, budgets,  and interests.

Refunds and withdrawals: Continuing Education reserves the right to cancel any class due to low enrollment. A full class refund will be issued if you withdraw from a class two weeks  - (14) fourteen calendar days – prior to the class start date. Our instructors are confirmed two weeks prior to the start of the class. Even if you withdraw, the instructors must be paid, therefore 2 weeks is the cut-off date to withdraw. Continuing Education reserves the right to cancel the class right up to the night before it starts due to low enrollment. Please call the Continuing Education office to withdraw from a class. You may leave a message on our voice mail (781-828-5800 x228). You can also e-mail . If you have paid by credit card you are subject to a 6% surcharge and any other cost associated with the credit card refund charges to the Continuing Education Department.

Please take a moment to review the catalog and make your selections for Fall 2014.

We look forward to seeing you!


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BHR Practical Nursing Program Holds 25th Annual Commencement

The Blue Hills Regional Practical Nursing Program Class of 2014 waits for Commencement to begin on June 25, 2014.  Photo by Judy Bass.

By Judy Bass

The Postgraduate Practical Nursing Program at Blue Hills Regional Technical School in Canton held its 25th Annual Commencement at the school on Wednesday, June 25 for the following 36 students in the Class of 2014:

Tosin Adebanjo, Norwell; Stephanie Baker, Whitman; Allison Beale, Whitman; Joecilena Brandao, Brockton; Lauren Burke, Braintree; Lisa Cirignano, Braintree; Ana DaRosa, Brockton; Sheila Derolus, Holbrook; Izabela Duggan, North Providence; Erin Ekbom, Plymouth; Jorge Enriquez-Diaz, Brockton; Jean Lucien Fontaine, Brockton; M. Christine Gagnon, Stoughton; Diana Hernandez, Quincy; Caraley Joseph, Brockton; Joyce LaJeunesse, Canton; Faurie Lamousnery, North Attleboro; Terri Mahoney, Braintree; Gabrielle Mancuso, Norwood; Stephanie Manikas, Rockland; Cara Marquardt (Hulse), Halifax; Robert McPhilemy, Canton; Eva Ngotho, Taunton; Janelle Noonan, Brockton; Caroline Onuegbu, Stoughton; Donna Pinciaro, Norwood; Katja Pione, Weymouth; R. Michael Riendeau, Dorchester; Aija Robinson, Braintree; Jean Rogene, Brockton; Frederick Rohrer, Rockland; Kristen Schurman, Foxboro; Michael Sullivan, Attleboro; Ashley Taylor, Brockton; Patrick Whittaker, Milton; Jordan Wilkes, East Taunton.

The Master of Ceremonies was Ms. Anne Marie Fortin, RN, Chairperson of the Practical Nursing Program.  The presentation of pins to the graduates was done by Practical Nursing faculty members Ms. Marie DiBlasi, RN, Ms. Nancy Finnell, RN, Ms. Catherine Mohan, RN, Ms. Paula Haddad, RN, Ms. Betty Tangney, RN, Ms. Ruth Murphy, RN, and Ms. Paula Winskowicz, RN.

Mr. Aidan G. Maguire, Jr. of Canton, Chairman of the Blue Hills Regional District School Committee, said in his opening remarks that “Few callings are as important as caring for your fellow human beings when they are sick or injured.  Your new profession requires many virtues – patience, compassion, sound judgment, wisdom, and physical and emotional stamina.   You made it to this point because you have all of those qualities, plus the strong desire to make your dream of being a practical nurse come true.”

The keynote speaker was Ms. Brenda Smith-Burke, RN, formerly an instructor in the program.  She told the graduates, “This is your night.  You’ve earned it and worked for it.  Tonight is an ending and tomorrow is a new beginning.”

Also present was Ms. Marybeth Joyce, Director of Admissions and Financial Aid, who assisted Mr. Maguire with presenting certificates of proficiency to the 36 graduates of the Practical Nursing Program.

There were several awards for outstanding achievement given out to the following individuals:

The WILFRID J. SAVOIE GENERAL EXCELLENCE AWARD For best exemplifying those characteristics sought in the Practical Nurse, notably clinical excellence, scholarship and a deep commitment to nursing, presented to Ana DaRosa and Kristen Schurman

The CLINICAL EXCELLENCE AWARD For best exemplifying those characteristics sought in the Practical Nurse, notably clinical excellence and a deep commitment to nursing, presented to Joecilena Brandao, Erin Ekbom, and Donna Pinciaro

ACHIEVEMENT AWARD Recognized and honored for her determination to succeed and her exceptional growth in the role of the Student Practical Nurse, presented to Ashley Taylor

MOTIVATION AWARD For continued perseverance and professional growth in her role as a student nurse,presented to Mary Gagnon

MAUREEN MCCANN NIGHTINGALE AWARD For demonstrating a high level of motivation and perseverance as a student practical nurse.  Recognized and honored for an uncommon determination to succeed and the ability to uphold professional standards, thereby demonstrating a deep commitment to nursing, presented to Sheila Derolus

LEADERSHIP AWARD For demonstrating the ability to motivate and inspire others through his leadership qualities of honesty, respect, responsibility and commitment to others, presented to R. Michael Riendeau

FACULTY AWARD Dedicated to a student for outstanding commitment, motivation and positive attitude in the role of Practical Nurse in both the academic and clinical areas, presented to Robert McPhilemy

The Postsecondary Practical Nursing Program at Blue Hills Regional Technical School is offered to adults on a full-time basis for 40 weeks from September to June, Monday through Friday from 7:45 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.  Clinical hours may vary to accommodate clinical agency availability. The Practical Nursing Program offers a rigorous educational experience of theory and clinical practice which prepares graduates to take the NCLEX-PN (National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nursing) through the State Board of Registration in Nursing.  For more information, please visit and go to the Practical Nursing tab on the home page, or call 781-828-5800 x231.





Posted in Nursing