South Central College kicked off their $9.6m 2020 Renovation today with a special Demo Day celebration and reception. With a ceremonial swipe of gold-plated sledgehammers, Dr. Annette Parker of South Central College, along with North Mankato Mayor Mark Dehen, Mankato Mayor Najwa Massad and GMG Interim President/CEO and Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Trustee Bob Hoffman, set the renovation process in motion.
The project will optimize South Central College’s current footprint with new classrooms, labs and student-focused features. It will also include structural renovations in the project area, and asbestos abatement.
“We are excited about the benefits this will bring to our students,” stated Dr. Parker. “There will be significant impact to the facilities for programs that focus on our region’s three largest industries, Healthcare, Agriculture and Advanced Manufacturing, as well as many other areas of the campus as well. Updates will include creating modernized classrooms, vibrant social and study spaces, centralized offices, and flexible multi-purpose labs.” The project will transform existing interior space into a modern, sustainable and collaborative learning environment.
This day has been a long time in the making. It began several years ago, when South Central College and the Minnesota State system requested bonding dollars for this North Mankato Campus Renovation Project. In 2014, the first bill was authored to provide this bond funding to SCC. Three of the original authors who pushed for the bill, not only in 2014, but in subsequent years as well, were Senator Kathy Sheran, Representative Kathy Brynaert and Representative Clark Johnson.
In addition to 2014, bills were also written in 2015 and 2016, with many area legislators signing on to support it. Then in 2017, a bill authored by Senators Nick Frentz and David Senjem and Representatives Clark Johnson, Jack Considine, Brian Daniels and David Bly made it all the way the end and the bill was passed in the wee hours of the morning on the last day of the 2017 session – providing $9.6 million in bonding funding to South Central College.
This Renovation will benefit not only South Central College, but our regional communities as well by providing an updated, better equipped educational and workforce training facility.