Workforce training center grand opening Thursday

The University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton is inviting the public to attend the grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony 11:30 a.m. Thursday, April 26, for the new Workforce Training Center.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson will deliver the keynote address.

The half-hour ceremony will also include remarks from University of Arkansas System President Dr. Donald R. Bobbitt, UACCM Foundation Board Chair Scott McKennon, UACCM Board of Visitors Chair Doug Brandon, UACCM Chancellor Dr. Larry Davis, industry partners and several elected state, county and city officials. Attendees may tour the WTC following the event.

Located on the west end of campus, the 53,843-square-foot building marks the end of the largest construction project in UACCM history and the first new building in nine years. The WTC will house Air Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration, Automotive Service, Industrial Mechanics & Maintenance, and Welding technology programs. 

“It has been a dream for over 10 years and was financially made possible by the contributions of many community supporters and employees, industry partners, federal and state grants and UACCM’s commitment to technical training,” said Linda Birkner, UACCM’s vice chancellor for administration. 

The approximately $15 million project began with an official groundbreaking ceremony on April 29, 2016, after purchasing two parcels of land from Morrilton residents Bob Coffman and Gene Ruffiner in April 2013 and March 2014, respectively. The college was approved for a $1.1 million Economic Development Administration investment from the U.S. Department of Commerce in September 2014. An employee campaign that same year, which received 90 percent participation, raised more than $63,000 in gifts and pledges. In addition, this project would not be possible without the UACCM Foundation’s Give Meaning Campaign, which has raised nearly $3 million since its conception in 2013. 

UACCM is proud to have selected two Arkansas-based companies to design and construct the WTC project — MAHG Architecture of Fort Smith and Nabholz Construction of Conway. Clearing of the site began Oct. 31, 2016, and a topping-out ceremony was held on April 24, 2017, where visitors signed and watched a beam be installed atop the central section of the new building.  

The WTC has been designed to achieve Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) certifications. If successful, it will be the first LEED certified building on campus. LEED is the most widely used green-building rating system in the world. From drought tolerant and low-maintenance landscape to safe cleaning processes and high-energy efficiencies, every aspect of the building is considered. 

For more information contact UACCM Director of Marketing and Public Relations Mary Clark at 501. 977.2011 or [email protected]. If you have a disability-related accommodation need for this event, contact Counseling Services at 501.977.2095.