Bally’s Corporation has made a $5m donation to the Community College of Rhode Island Foundation as part of a long-term partnership with the institution.
The fund is the largest donation to the school in its history and will serve as a platform to increase access to advanced education in Rhode Island and provide economic opportunities to the school’s students who are aiming to enter the betting and gaming industry.
As a result of the partnership, CCRI will become one of a select few institutions in the New England region to offer certificates and qualifications in the gaming industry. The institution will be a blend of classroom learning, online course, and learning labs and offers students access to courses in dealer training, casino operations, cybersecurity, igaming operations, hotel management and slot technology.
Work to build a curriculum for the course will now commence, with Bally’s and CCRI hoping to make the degree course available to students by the fall of 2024.
Bally’s Chairman Soo Kim stated: “It is an honor to partner with CCRI on such an exciting and important initiative. We are proud to play an integral part in offering higher education opportunities for Rhode Island’s workforce, creating new jobs, and driving economic development. Rhode Island is our home, and continued investment in its local communities and workforce will always be a top priority for us.
“While this donation is the latest milestone in our long-term partnership with CCRI, we look forward to supporting this program for many years to come, creating a legacy of economic opportunity.”
All parties celebrated the donation and partnership at an event hosted on CCRI’s Flanagan Campus, which was attended by Governor Daniel McKee as well as Senate President Dominick Ruggerio, and House Majority Leader Chris Blazejewski.
Governor McKee said: “This landmark partnership between Bally’s and CCRI will provide important learning and training for our CCRI students, leading to new workforce opportunities.
“The generous gift provided by one Rhode Island-based company for the benefit of so many of our state’s community college students is a powerful way to advance economic and social opportunity and teach meaningful, transferable workforce skills. I applaud Bally’s for investing in our state’s higher education system and our students.”
As well as calling Rhode Island home, Bally’s has its Twin River Lincoln and Bally’s Tiverton casino properties in the state. In a boost to its online operations, Bally’s will be the sole online casino license holder in the state from next year, after the legislature passed a bill to legalize online casinos via Bally’s and its vendor, IGT.