Snead State unveils plans for new career tech center
Gov. Kay Ivey on Friday joined Snead State Community College president Joe Whitmore in announcing the school’s plans for a new career and technical training center. Senate Majority Leader and Marshall County native Clay Scofield, Alabama Community College Chancellor Jimmy Baker and Marshall County Schools Superintendent Cindy Wigley were also on hand to commemorate the occasion.
“It’s great to be with friends here in Boaz, but it’s also great to be here to announce the construction of the Snead State Community College Workforce Training Center,” Ivey said to a full house inside Fielder Auditorium. “... It’s imperative that we continue to develop our workforce to meet the needs of the companies that call Alabama home.”
As part of her “Strong Start, Strong Finish” initiative, Ivey allocated $4,000,000 toward the project “to ensure that all Alabamians have the opportunity to attain skills and credentials necessary for in-demand jobs.”
Whitmore said the 45,000-square-foot facility will help facilitate the area’s business and industry’s training needs, which, based on survey data and meetings with local industries, includes programs such as welding technology, industrial systems technology, machine tool technology, and HVAC/refrigeration. In the future, if different disciplines become more in-demand, he said the building will easily be able to adapt.
“Next year, we will be celebrating 125 years as an institution, the oldest community college in the state of Alabama,” Whitmore said. “And in the last 125 years — and this may be a bold statement — but I don’t think there’s ever been an announcement that had the impact on the community, on the region and on the students that the announcement we’re making today will make.”
Both Whitmore and Ivey credited Sen. Scofield with “championing” this project over the years and helping bring it to fruition.
“I truly believe that this is a game changer, not just for Marshall County, but for all of our area,” Scofield said. “I promise you this, me and my office are going to do everything that we can to make sure that you have the tools to keep Alabama going and to make it even better and continue to pump out our workforce that’s going to be changing over time.”
Scofield thanked Wigley and the Marshall County School Board for offering space at the Marshall Technical School as a central location for the new building.
“We have wanted this day for many years because we are passionate about our students making the full circle and having a direct connection to the workforce,” Wigley said. “[We] could not be more excited about this project.”
Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood has been chosen to be the architect on the project. Though a completion date for the new facility has yet to be determined, construction is slated to begin as early as fall.
“This project is a model of what is possible if everyone works together,” Ivey concluded. “I look forward to breaking ground on this facility later in the year and the thousands of future students that will be served once it’s completed.”
- By DANIEL TAYLOR The Reporter