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Texas A&M University System, Blinn College dedicate new workforce complex

The new $15 million building was dedicated Wednesday.
Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 5:37 PM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) -A new Agricultural and Workforce Education Complex is now open at the Texas A&M RELLIS Campus. The new $15 million facility was dedicated Wednesday. It will provide workforce training and education opportunities for students of all ages.

They are focusing on trades like welding, plumbing, electrical and HVAC which continue to be in high demend.

“This is a 38,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility, where students will prepare for high demand careers in secondary education and the construction industries," said Patrick Stover, Ph.D., Texas A&M Agrilife Vice Chancellor.

It’s the latest in a partnership between Texas A&M and Blinn. Students will learn new trades through short term certification classes or more in depth semester-long ones.

“What this is about is making sure that the Brazos Valley is as recession-proof as possible," said Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp. Sharp said they talked to business leaders about what jobs are in most demand and worked to provide those education opportunities here.

“That includes carpentry, HVAC, electrical, all kinds of things like that and this is just the beginning. It’s going to expand from here," Sharp said.

“What will happen when students enroll? They’ll be able to get world class, first class training at this facility and go out into the marketplace, get high demand positions with high wages to match that," said Mary Hensley, Ed.D., Blinn College District Chancellor.

“I don’t think there will ever be a time where we don’t need a plumber or we don’t need an electrician," said Hensley. “We will need these jobs forever and so they’re here not just in Brazos County but around the state and around the nation so good opportunities for the young, for the middle and for somewhat older.”

“Because of this partnership our students are in a better position than they were before for these types of careers that are in demand and do meet the needs of the state,” said Stover.

Blinn plans to add more associate degree programs like construction management, power line work and site surveying.

They said next fall they will also be adding associate degrees in construction safety and electrical.

Hensley also announced they now have 2,751 students enrolled at the RELLIS Campus. They started their presence there two years ago.

We have more information on the RELLIS Campus here.

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