Bally’s Corporation has donated $5 million to the Community College of Rhode Island Foundation, as part of its long-term partnership.

The donation doubles the size of the college’s endowment and is the largest single donation in the history of the institution. Bally’s and CCRI will expand the partnership to become the only higher education institution in RI, and one of a few in New England to obtain a certificate or associate degree on a gaming-focused curriculum.

The college is hoping to have degree programs available by Fall 2024, with a curriculum being established around various gaming-related topics, including practical opportunities to work at Bally’s properties. Potential topics highlighted include: casino operations, dealer training, cybersecurity, hotel management, slot technology, online casino operations and culinary arts.

In addition to the program aimed at building a future pipeline of skilled workers for Bally’s, the college’s Division of Workforce Partnerships aims to develop and launch short-term credentials aimed to upskill Bally’s existing workforce and help reinforce the pipeline of future employees.

The gift and partnership was announced at a grandiose ceremony on the CCRI Flanagan Campus, with notable guests including state Governor Daniel McKee, Senate President Dominick Ruggerio, House Majority Leader Chris Blazejewski and Bally’s Chairman Soo Kim.

The partnership was formally announced earlier today during an event hosted on CCRI’s Flanagan Campus. Governor Daniel McKee, Senate President Dominick Ruggerio, House Majority Leader Chris Blazejewski, Bally’s Chairman Soo Kim, CCRI Interim President Dr. Rosemary A. Costigan, Ph.D., R.N., and former CCRI President Dr. Meghan Hughes were in attendance, among other distinguished guests.

Soo Kim, President of Bally’s Corporation said: “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 workforces 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.”

Governor McKee commented: “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.”

CCRI is a designated Hispanic-Serving Institution by the United States Department of Education and of all higher education institutions in Rhode Island, serves more low-income students and students of color. Bally’s investment will also stretch to provide scholarships to those seeking to pursue a career in gaming and hospitality.

Bally’s and gaming in Rhode Island go hand-in-hand. The state is headquartered in RI, and operates the two casino properties in the state: Twin River Lincoln and Bally’s Tiverton. Both of those offer retail sports betting.

Additionally, Rhode Island online casino was recently signed into law by Governor McKee. Upon launch, Bally’s will be the sole vendor for online casino play and thus hold a monopoly.