Military college kicks off expansion in Warner Robins
Military college kicks off expansion in Warner Robins
By Julie Hubbard
Macon Telegraph Staff Writer
WARNER ROBINS – The Georgia Military College-Warner Robins campus will host a ceremony today to mark the beginning of construction for an expansion to its building, which is expected to increase student enrollment, officials said Wednesday.
At 10:30 a.m., city leaders and officials with the Milledgeville-based junior college will hold a ground-breaking ceremony for the new 13,000-square-foot wing at the Village at Towne Center.
The new building, expected to be completed in June, will include a student center, library, seven classrooms, office and a new science lab.
\”We were excited to get this facility,\” Campus Director Susan Ferguson said Wednesday. \”We had to start renting more and more space (to keep up with the growing student population). This will allow us to expand and meet that need.\”
The Warner Robins branch campus first opened on Robins Air Force Base about 18 years ago, providing college opportunities for mostly military men and women, and some civilians.
But over time, more civilians enrolled in the college, and after Sept. 11, 2001, it was harder for those civilians to check in with security and get on base for their classes, Ferguson said.
About two years ago the city, Warner Robins Downtown Development Authority and Scherer Construction Inc. contributed about $180,000 to build what is now the college\’s 10,000-square-foot campus at the Village at Towne Center, said Warner Robins Mayor Donald Walker.
\”To have a credible community we need to have an educated community,\” Walker said. \”When industry looks at Houston County the first thing they look for is if the work force can build their products, better, cheaper and faster.\”
In exchange for the city\’s money, GMC would allow 15 city employees to take courses tuition-free, Walker said.
\”Now, they have completely no classroom space left,\” he said.
The college enrollment grew and GMC had to rent space at Northside High School and Warner Robins High School to offer more courses.
Enrollment has grown from about 300 to about 800, Ferguson said.
The city of Warner Robins contributed about $160,000 for the new expansion building, officials said.
With a new science lab, the military college should be able to offer more courses in psychology, chemistry and anatomy.
GMC is a two-year college that offers associate degrees in general studies, education, business administration, logistics management, international affairs, pre-nursing, criminal justice and behavioral science. Many students get their basics with the college in Warner Robins and then transfer to Georgia\’s four-year colleges, Ferguson said.
To contact Julie Hubbard, call 923-6199, extension 305, or e-mail email@example.com.
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