Anderson County Higher Education Center
Friday afternoon, officials gathered at the new Anderson County Higher Education Center on Frank Diggs Drive in Clinton, TN for a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The new center will be a partnership between two of the area’s leading educational institutions Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT) at Knoxville and Roane State Community College.
TCAT has been providing training for Machine Tool Technology and Welding for several months in a temporary facility. The new facility is expected to be a boom to local industries and prospective employees alike by offering courses geared toward the industries operating in this area. The temporary facility is the former Hensley Building and renovation was funded by local industries and a $250,000 contribution made last year by the Anderson County Commission. The new center is being funded in part by $5.7 million grant from part of Governor Bill Haslam’s Drive to 55 initiative, which aims to get 55 percent of Tennesseans equipped with a college degree or certificate by the year 2025. The State of Tennessee General Assembly also approved $13.5 million to be used on the new Anderson County campus and the remainder to fund the new Blount County TCAT facility. SL Tennessee donated land in the I-75 Industrial Park for the new Anderson County Higher Education Center where the groundbreaking ceremony took place on Friday, December 7th, 2018. The new center should open in 2019.
FROM THE COLLEGE PRESIDENTS:
Dwight Murphy – President Tennessee College of Applied Technology Knoxville
“We are honored to be a part of the coalition of educational providers, area businesses, community leaders and community organizations that have brought this Higher Education Center to Anderson County. TCAT Knoxville is committed to providing top notch training for Anderson County residents. This training will open up opportunities for residents to obtain higher-paying jobs and help retain local industry. Efforts like this are what workforce and economic development are all about! This project could never have happened without the support of Lt. Governor McNally and the members of the General Assembly.”
President Murphy said that TCAT Knoxville will continue the Machine Tool and Welding programs at the new center. TCAT Knoxville plans to add new training programs in Automotive Technology, Diesel Powered Equipment Technology, and Industrial Maintenance/Mechatronics as well as Special Industry Training.
Dr. Chris Whaley – President Roane State Community College
“We’re excited to partner with the Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Knoxville. Thanks to this project, students will have opportunities that lead to well-paying careers with current industries and perhaps new businesses,” Roane State President Dr. Chris Whaley said. “The joint project is a great example of how The College System of Tennessee works together to serve students, meet workforce needs, and enhance economic development.”
Dr. Whaley said Roane State plans to offer training in mechatronics, injection molding and chemical engineering technology at the new facility.