Bonding project will correct more than $3.1 million in deferred maintenance
Inver Hills Community College is requesting $1 million in 2016 for the design aspect of a bonding project that will renovate the current Business building and create a new Technology & Business Center (TBC) on the college’s main campus in Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota. A $13.4 million bonding request for construction is proposed for 2018. The Technology & Business Center Renovation includes a number of significant upgrades designed to improve student learning and help meet the state’s workforce needs. Important areas addressed by the renovation include:
- Computer networking equipment needs to be centralized and in more useable space
- Little to no natural light is available to illuminate second floor classrooms and hallways
- 30 percent of the building contains unusable space due to the floor plan or excess volume above resulting from the sloped roof
- A physical connection between the TBC and Heritage Hall would provide for greater partnerships and collaboration between departments in both buildings
Wednesday evening, Dec. 2, 2015, the Senate Capital Bonding Committee spent several hours at Inver Hills. Accompanied by local legislators, Sen. Greg D. Clausen (DFL) District 57, and Rep. Joe Atkins (DFL) District 52B, the committee toured areas of the Business building that require renovation. Tim Wynes, J.D., president of Inver Hills and Dakota County Technical College, took part in the tour along with college faculty, Ben Franske, Information Technology Careers, and Yohannes Agegnehu, Business.
“Ben and Yohannes gave committee members insights into the hurdles and barriers to teaching 21st century courses in a 20th century building,” Wynes said. “The proposed renovation clears up external drainage and internal leakage problems while modernizing classrooms throughout the building.” Leakage issues were spotlighted in one classroom: a tarp hanging from the ceiling protects computers from dripping roof water.
President Wynes noted that Franske provided a clear picture of Business building shortcomings that impede student learning. Agegnehu invited several students and one former student attending the Carlson School of Management to engage the committee and relate their academic and extracurricular experiences at Inver Hills.
“It will be months before we know if and when our project will be funded,” Wynes said, “but we made an excellent impression.”
- Renovate 31,800 square feet of existing Technology & Business Center (TBC)
- Create 11 flexible sized technology adapted classrooms for the computer network technologies & security (CNT), paralegal and business programs
- Create four specialized CNT classrooms to connect to the CNT Networking Lab
- Connect the Technology & Business Center and Heritage Hall to improve access to informal computing and STEM advising
- Correct more than $3.1 million in deferred maintenance, which is more than 30 percent of the college’s total deferred maintenance
Impact to Academic Space & College
- Better accommodate CISCO teaching classroom’s space utilization needs for networking equipment
- Eliminate most of the non-useable space created by the sloped roof which comprises more than 30 percent of the current building
- Improve energy efficiency while also providing access to natural sunlight not had by more than 50 percent of the current classroom spaces
- Maintain the unique aspects of the campus’ architectural identity while providing a modernized framework to follow into the future
Impact on Workforce, Community & State
- Nearly 30 percent of Americans with associate degrees now make more than those with baccalaureate degrees according to Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce
- Recent research in several states shows that on average, community college graduates right out of school make more than graduates of four-year universities. (cnn.com, February 2013)
- STEM occupations are projected to grow by 17 percent from 2008 to 2018, compared to 9.8 percent growth in non-STEM related occupations. (U.S. Department of Commerce, July 2011)
- The proposed Technology & Business Center offers:
- Improved quality and services in a flexible state-of-the-art learning environment for STEM, paralegal, business and accounting programs
- Increased utilization of existing spaces by putting into commission underutilized cubic volume and reconfiguration of existing classrooms and labs, providing a more flexible facility to meet
enrollment and functional demands
- Leveraged partnerships with CISCO Systems, National Science Foundation, Cyber Watch, MnSCU Center of Excellence, and Concordia University
- Continued access to high-quality internships, community-based learning opportunities, and extracurricular opportunities that provide students with experiences desirable to employers
To learn more about the Technology & Business Center Renovation, contact:
Tim Wynes, J.D.
Inver Hills and DCTC President
Project Website: inverhills.edu/bonding
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