The Louisiana House of Representatives Thursday approved $18.5 million for a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) building for Bossier Parish Community College.
The money is part of Senate Bill 204 by Roberty Adley (R-Benton), a statewide facilities initiative to improve Louisiana's Community and Technical College facilities. The bill provides increased training capacity and opportunities for students, business and industry in both rural and urban areas across the state.
The STEM building at BPCC will house programs that will train individuals for high-demand, high-paying careers in these fields.
"This was a monumental win for students, employers and communities - not only
in Northwest Louisiana, but in the entire state," said Jim Henderson, chancellor of BPCC. "The new STEM facility at BPCC will produce the skilled workforce our employers need, and in turn, create a better quality of life for our residents."
The bill authorizes financing and construction of 29 projects in the amount of $251.6 million. Twelve percent, or $34.3 million, will be provided from local matching funds. The program will provide 25 workforce projects, three one-stop student testing, career and service centers and one safety-related project.
"The approval of SB204 shows a commitment by the Legislature to continue to invest in and improve facilities for career and technical education programs to meet the growing demand for a skilled labor force," said Joe May, president, Louisiana Community and Technical College System. "This action will enable us to maintain the course - one of unprecedented enrollment growth, program development aligned with business and industry and graduating highly-skilled students who will produce tangible, economically beneficial results for our state."