Lt. Governor Brownand Speaker Busch Tour Anne Arundel Community College, Present Check Representing Final State Contribution For Renovation of Careers Building
ANNAPOLIS, MD (September 9, 2008) – Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown and House Speaker Michael E. Busch toured the campus of Anne Arundel Community College today. Prior to the tour, Brown and Busch presented Anne Arundel Community College President Smith with a ceremonial check for $1.477 million to commemorate the final state contribution toward the renovation of the College’s Careers Building.
“Community colleges are Maryland’s most effective workforce incubators. As we prepare for the arrival BRAC, we are strengthening our partnerships with all of Maryland’s community colleges to provide the training and education necessary to fulfill our state’s patriotic mission,” Lt. Governor Brown said. “I am proud to present a check from Maryland’s taxpayers for the renovation of the Careers Building, which will open new classrooms, new laboratories and new doors to new opportunities for anyone willing to invest in their own potential.”
The Careers Building is in its final year of renovation and the College expects to complete renovations by December. The total cost of the project is $22 million, of which the state has contributed $10.76 million over several years. Once complete, the 77,835 square foot building will provide additional laboratory and classroom space.
“Maryland’s knowledge-based economy continues to thrive because of the strength of our community college system,” said Speaker Michael E. Busch. “Anne Arundel Community College awards more degrees than any other community college in the state and continues to play an important role in the county’s economic development success.”
“We are very pleased that Governor O’Malley, Lt. Governor Brown, Speaker Busch and the Maryland Legislature have shown such great support for community colleges, and especially Anne Arundel Community College,” said Anne Arundel Community College President Marti Smith. “This check allows us to complete the renovation of the largest classroom building on the campus which will now house a new microbiology lab, a state-of-the-art global languages lab, the Entrepreneurial Studies Center, and the Hatchery – our student business incubator.”
As Maryland and Anne Arundel County prepare for the arrival of BRAC, employers and public officials anticipate new demands for educated and trained workers. As many as 60,000 new jobs will be created in Maryland before 2011, many in the areas immediately surrounding Ft. Meade. It is estimated that nearly 7 out of ten created jobs will be filled by Marylanders. To address the immediate workforce needs of BRAC expansion, employers and the State of Maryland are partnering with community colleges to develop new academic programs that will help train a workforce pipeline to fill those BRAC jobs.
During this year’s legislative session, the General Assembly passed the BRAC Higher Education Fund which sets aside $10 million over the next three years to help kick start higher education programs and initiatives designed specifically to meet the state’s BRAC needs. The Maryland Higher Education Commission released an official request for applications earlier this month. All colleges and universities in Maryland are eligible to apply, including community colleges.
Since taking office in January 2007, the O’Malley/Brown administration has increased state support for community colleges by record levels, including a nine percent increase for operating funds. In that same time, Governor O’Malley and the General Assembly have invested a record $150 million for community colleges, including $8.5 million at Anne Arundel Community College.