Northeast State Community College officials on Tuesday held a ceremonial groundbreaking hailing the construction of a $29.8 million Technical Education Complex.
The 114,475 square-foot building will house the divisions of Business and Advanced Technologies. The complex will replace the oldest buildings on campus, which were built in the 1960s and early 1970s.
“This building has been long-awaited by the College and the community,” said Northeast State President James D. King. “It will be the crown jewel of the campus, and instrumental in student recruitment and workforce development.”
The complex features two main floors, plus a courtyard level that will house division offices.
The ground floor will house classrooms, lab space, and faculty offices for Advanced Technologies. It will have lab space for instruction in computer numeric control (CNC) machining, welding, HVAC/electromechanical, electrical and wiring, magnetics and motors, and programmable logic controller (PLC)/mechatronics.
Entertainment Technology, part of the Business Technologies division, will also have a lighting and sound lab, recording studios, and a sound editing room on the first floor.
The top floor is home to Business Technologies and will feature lab space for business, computer programming, PC maintenance, cyber security, networking, accounting, professional office administration, entertainment technology, and an entrepreneurial center as well as faculty offices and classrooms.
“Lab space needs have grown tremendously in recent years,” King said. “The need for technology in classrooms and labs to train skilled workers is critical. We feel this facility will answer those needs as well as the demands of business and industry for generations to come.”
The project dovetails with Gov. Haslam’s “Drive to 55” initiative, a campaign to raise the number of Tennesseans who hold two- and four-year degrees to 55 percent by 2025. Currently, only 32 percent of residents have earned a college degree. Projections show 55 percent of all new jobs will require a degree.
Ohio-based Messer Construction Co. is the contractor for the project and John Fisher of Fisher Associates of Greeneville, Tenn., is the lead architect on the project.
Messer is a construction manager and general contractor, providing leadership for complex, commercial construction projects in the healthcare, higher education, life sciences, and industrial market segments.