RSCC seeks county funding for building expansion | Local News

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Roane State’s Cumberland County is the third-largest campus in the community college system, but these students still must drive for several in-demand programs and required courses.

“Unfortunately, for years we’ve sent many students to other campuses so we can take some of their classes,” Cumberland County campus superintendent Holly Hanson told county budget committee members May 12. . to reduce the number of students traveling outside of our county.

The state has allocated $1.7 million to expand the Cumberland County facility, adding two classrooms and a flexible lab.

“We have a lab that’s never had a fume hood, and for chemistry experiments you have to have a fume hood,” Hanson said.

The science lab will allow students to take lab science courses like chemistry, as well as other science courses including anatomy and physiology, geology, and biology. It can also serve students from Fentress, Morgan, and other surrounding counties.

“We will have an opportunity for students who can go elsewhere,” Hanson said.

Hanson said plans have been expanded to include a lab and classroom for a nursing program. Currently, nursing students must travel to Oak Ridge, Roane County, or Knoxville.

“We send all of our students down I-40 and beyond to take the nursing program,” Hanson said.

The Roane State Foundation asked the county commission for a one-time donation of $150,000 to complete a construction project, about half of the estimated remaining cost. The Foundation has also requested $150,000 from the City of Crossville.

Additional costs for equipment, teachers, maintenance, and utilities will be covered by the State of Roane or the Foundation.

The nursing class will expand access to the school’s in-demand nursing program, which has limited spaces available for students.

“So many of our students don’t even have the opportunity to participate in the program,” Hanson said.

The Cumberland County expansion would add approximately 24 spaces to the RSCC nursing program.

“We hope to almost double the size of our nursing program,” Hanson said.

Often, nursing students complete clinical training at facilities close to their campus — and many continue to work for those facilities, Hanson said.

“We are losing a lot of our skilled nursing students where they are doing their clinical work,” she said. “We would like to keep them close and safe, as well as keep them in our community.”

Cumberland County Mayor Allen Foster said he had doubts about funding for the project before the nursing lab was included.

“When you add the nursing lab and 20 nurses graduate from that campus every year, money well spent,” Foster said.

The committee offered tentative approval as it continues its review of the budget. All committee decisions are subject to review until the final budget is approved.

Other non-profit donations tentatively approved are:

• Crossville-Cumberland County Chamber of Commerce, $52,500, designated for the Retire Tennessee program, tourism development, economic and community development, Stay-Cation

• Cumberland County Rescue Team, $12,000

• Fair Park Senior Center, $30,000

• Hilltopper, $17,100

• Veterans Honor Guard, $4,500

• Wags and Whiskers, $5,000

• Fairfield Glade Fire Department, $26,100

• Cumberland County Junior Marines, $300

• Avalon Center, $8,000

• Court-appointed special advocates, $5,500

• Military Memorial Museum, $1,370

• Cumberland County Theatre, $17,000

Contracts with other agencies include Upper Cumberland Human Resources Agency, $18,011; Upper Cumberland Development District, $9,228; UCDD planning services, $15,000; and tourism working group, $30,600.

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