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NWTC expansion will go to referendum April 7

Author: Casey M Fryda

Monday January 26, 2015
Student uses a CNC machine

Public hearing leads to 'yes' vote by community reps on NWTC Board

GREEN BAY – Today’s public hearing on Northeast Wisconsin Technical College’s proposed expansion resulted in approval by the NWTC District Board. Representatives from the counties in NWTC’s District voted in favor of placing the issue before voters on the April 7 ballot.

We’re at capacity,” said NWTC president Dr. H. Jeffrey Rafn. “We need to make changes to support industries that need more trained workers and Wisconsin residents who need more economic opportunities.”

The proposed expansions and upgrades focus on relieving critical workforce shortages in trades and engineering, but it would include expansions in business, IT, public safety and rural health education as well.

NWTC is requesting $66.5 million for improving its three campuses (Green Bay, Sturgeon Bay, Marinette). The increased space—160,000 sq. ft. of new space and 240,000 sq. ft. of renovated space—will increase capacity by an additional 1,000 full-time equivalent students.

The referendum will increase the tax levy by $7.50 per year for a $150,000 house for 15 years. This support will help NWTC meet the community’s demand for more graduates, infusing the region with 900 more skilled workers per year in technologically advanced jobs.

The last NWTC referendum, in 2001, was needed so that the college could grow to accommodate 5,000 FTE students. The College is currently serving over 7,000 FTE students. In fact, Community College Week, a national education publication, recently analyzed U.S. Dept. of Education data and listed NWTC as the 14th fastest-growing large two-year college in the United States.

Details and updates regarding the referendum will be posted on NWTC’s web site at www.NWTC.edu/LeadTheWay.

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