Clinton Community College awarded $1 million grant for construction of Career Training facility in Dewitt

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2/17/21

Eastern Iowa Community Colleges (EICC) is pleased to announce Clinton Community College is receiving $1 million in grant funding from the Iowa Department of Education’s Career Academy Incentive Fund, the largest amount available through the fund. The grant will be used to build a Career and Technical Education Center in the Crossroads Industrial Park in DeWitt, bringing more career and technical education opportunities to community members and high school students in Clinton and Jackson Counties.

Established through the reauthorization of the Secure an Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE) fund in 2019, the Career Academy Incentive Fund provides targeted grants to support partnerships between school districts and community colleges that expand access to hands-on career training programs, with a focus on programming delivered through regional centers. In addition to this grant, the college is asking voters to consider a March 2 bond referendum that would help fund the project.

“The support from the state illustrates strong consistent support for our vision to provide increased opportunities for Eastern Iowans,” said Brian Kelly, Clinton Community College President.

“With all of our regional economic development groups and all eight Clinton and Jackson County school districts supporting and contributing to this effort, we are excited to add this grant and state level support to ensure members of our community have equitable access to these workforce driven educational opportunities.”

Construction of this new regional center will significantly increase opportunities for area high schools to participate in the college’s career academy offerings. Career academies provide students the opportunity to receive hands-on career training and college credits while still in high school. To earn the $1 million grant, EICC had to meet specific criteria including the ability to offer at least four career academies and serve a minimum of four school districts. 

The new facility will support the following planned programs: Agriculture, Business, Construction Technology, CNC Machining, Healthcare and Information Technology. Reducing barriers is at the heart of the Career Academy and Regional Center proposal. These career academies provide a clear career path and goal for high school students and are especially beneficial for students who might not have the opportunity to pursue further education or training after high school.

“The economic growth and development of our region requires a trained and skilled workforce, and currently our rural areas are underserved by career and technical education opportunities,” Kelly said.

Career academy programs are offered by EICC on all three campuses of Clinton, Muscatine and Scott Community Colleges. Expanding student access to high-quality career and technical education is part of the Future Ready Iowa initiative, which is focused on growing a skilled workforce in all regions of the state by connecting more Iowans to the education and training needed for high-demand careers. The funding will be distributed over a three-year-period.