UPSTATE — Back in 2004 during a board retreat, Tri-County Technical College Commission members and President Ronnie L. Booth discussed the need for a Student Success Center that would be open and accessible and dedicated to student support, engagement and learning.
Fourteen-plus years later (Jan. 12, 2018), they gathered with faculty, staff, students and community leaders to cut the ribbon and celebrate the opening of a three-story, 75,000-square-foot facility dedicated to student success.
“This is a milestone date in our history,” said Dr. Booth. “We started with the end in mind – student success.”
The Student Success Center is the first new building on the Pendleton Campus in 20 years. “It’s been a long time coming,” said Dr. Booth, who thanked the county councils for “making this happen. On behalf of the students today and the future, thank you for making a dream come true.”
The new structure houses a learning commons designed with technology and group study spaces to help facilitate the development of 21st century workplace skills. It also houses flexible meeting spaces, computer labs, group study areas, tutoring spaces, the College Café, Campus Store, Printing Services, IT, Service Desk and Student Development.
The next phase of the project is a complete renovation of Ruby Hicks Hall during 2018 and the installation of a central chiller plant and chilled water loop.
The project is a key component of Tri-County Technical College’s strategy to increase student success, reduce long-term maintenance costs and address double-digit enrollment growth, said Dr. Booth.
Mar’Keese Rayton, a 2016 graduate of Crescent High School, engineering design major at Tri-County and president of the Student Government Association, said, “We are thrilled the College and community are willing to invest in a facility that provides space for student to work in teams and do research. There is also space for events and activities. I know the Student Success Center will go a long way in helping students to learn, access resources and develop a sense of belonging at Tri-County.”
“The Student Success Center is designed to help students to develop a comprehensive skill set that the workplace demands in the 21st century. This facility is an example of forward-looking vision and skillful leadership,” said Tommy Dunn, chairman of the Anderson County Council.
“The Student Success Center is an integral part of enabling students to gain technical expertise and/or to prepare them to go to a four-year college. TriCounty is the real cog for economic development in our area,” said Rep. Gary Clary.
“This is a great facility and I’m excited for Dr. Booth, faculty and staff but, most importantly, the students,” said Congressman Jeff Duncan.
“I’m thrilled as an alumnus of this school that we got students involved in the planning,” Commission Chair John Powell, a 1972 graduate said. “I’m really proud of this — it’s a wonderful thing.”
“We all are excited to be working in this fantastic new learning environment and look forward to having our students and colleagues share in making the Student Success Center a TCTC destination,” added Linda Jameison, assistant vice president for student support and engagement at the College.