Technical Education and Innovation Center at CCCC Making Steady Progress

By Payton Tholstrup

The new Technical Education and Innovation Center at Cloud continues to make steady progress as the 2024-2025 semester nears. The building is nearly 35,000 square feet and will be home to many programs including Nursing and Allied Health, Agriculture, and Industrial Technology, and Renewable Energy. According to Cloud County President, Amber Knoettgen, the new center is a direct response to the educational and workforce needs of Kansas.

  The center will have a profound impact on rural Kansas. Students will have a variety of programs within each field that they can choose to pursue. For example, Nursing and Allied Health will include RN, EMT, CNA, CMA, and Pharmacy Technician programs. RN students taking the NCLEX for the first time have a high passing rate of 90%. 100% of RN students pass overall.

Agriculture and Industrial Technology will include welding and CDL programs. Renewable Energy will include Wind Energy, Solar Energy, and Drones. Cloud is one of the first colleges in the nation to offer a comprehensive Wind Energy Blade Repair Program. This program includes a Composite Lab. Cloud also has its own wind and solar farm on campus that helps to power the geothermal system. The campus has an electrical substation too – the only one of its kind in the nation. All of this allows students to gain hands-on experience.

Others are noticing the commitment that Cloud is putting in towards these programs as well. United States Secretary of Energy, Jennifer Granholm, gave the college recognition for the Renewable Energy Programs in an address at the ACCT Legislative Summit on February 5th. Cloud was only one of three colleges in the entire United States mentioned in the address.

“People like Michael Flores, who went to Cloud County Community College in Kansas for a two-year wind program and went from pinching pennies to never having to check his bank account. That’s the promise of clean energy,” Granholm said.

“The Center will contribute to the betterment and vitality of our communities in Cloud County and North Central Kansas. The progress on this project is a direct result of the hard work of our faculty, staff, students, and the passion of our community. This is truly a community-wide effort,” President Amber Knoettgen said.

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