by jamesc 12/7/2016 3:00:00 PM --
WEST POINT, NE – The City of West Point will collaborate with Northeast Community College to construct a technical training facility addition to the city-owned Nielsen Community Center.
Mayor Marlene Johnson said the addition will be a critical piece in the economic vitality of
West Point and the region. She said the city will construct and operate the facility while Northeast Community College will lease the space to expand its programming for area residents.
“We have been in discussions with Northeast for several years to find an opportunity for the College to offer technical training in areas such as industrial technology, welding and fabrication, health care and other priority training needs. This addition to the Nielsen Community Center will be a tremendous asset in providing skilled and technical workforce training geared for Northeast students as well to those employed in area business and industry.”
The $2 million, 10,000 square foot addition will be constructed on the north side of the 44,000 square foot Nielsen Community Center. Johnson said community and area business leaders and the center’s advisory board are raising funds to construct and equip the facility.
Dr. Michael Chipps, president of Northeast, said he is pleased to work with the City of West Point to bring this project to fruition. He said it will align well with the goals of the College’s Vision 2020 strategic plan, and with the Northeast mission – Northeast Community College is dedicated to the success of students and the region it serves.
“This is an excellent opportunity to expand Northeast’s career and technical education opportunities to this region of the College’s service area that are offered through the
West Point extended campus. We are pleased that the city and others in the area see the value in this endeavor…an endeavor that will provide enhanced economic benefits to this sector of our entire 20-county service area.” he said.
Chipps said Northeast Community College is committed to its extended campus operations by identifying additional programming opportunities and space needs.
“Northeast has been hearing from a number of local and area business and industry representatives on the need for additional skilled workforce training opportunities in this sector of the 20-county region. This new training wing to the Nielsen Community Center will certainly meet the need in providing the instruction necessary to prepare a qualified workforce.”
Chipps said the space will provide short-term business and industry training provided through Northeast’s Center for Enterprise (CFE). He said the space will greatly assist the CFE in allowing it to expand its work in this region.
“Northeast Community College has partnered with area employers and economic development officials to pilot a “Manufacturing Boot Camp” to address a middle-skilled workforce gap in Cuming County and the surrounding areas. The CFE had great success with these boot camps and is looking at plans for additional sessions through this new technical training facility.”
Northeast Community College presently operates its West Point Extended Campus in the Nielsen Community Center. Classes are conducted in the center’s state-of-the-art classrooms, computer labs, and science lab.
Johnson said construction of the new addition is set to begin in spring 2017 with completion and operation by the end of the 2017 calendar year.
PHOTO ID: Nielsen Community Center.