Augusta Tech on track to become a destination school
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - The newly signed Georgia state budget sets up Augusta Tech for a new advanced manufacturing and engineering technology facility in Columbia County.
And that’s just the latest of a string of good things happening at Augusta Tech. Together, they could attract students from afar to study programs that aren’t available elsewhere.
With the approval of $2.7 million in design funding in the budget that was signed last week, the college is now in line to get millions in construction funding in Fiscal Year 2025 and nearly $7 million for furniture, fixtures and equipment.
The 81,000-square-foot facility will house the architectural, computer/electrical, mechanical, nuclear, machine tool, chemical technology, industrial automation, mechatronics/robotics, metrology, hydraulics/pneumatics, 3D printing and welding programs, among others.
It will also have space for economic development and research projects.
“What we haven’t been able to do was invest in what I call bleeding-edge technology, some of the future technology, because we simply didn’t have space,” Augusta Tech President Dr. Jermaine Whirl said.
“Our engineering and manufacturing school is about 30 in terms of enrollment, and most folks come to us for health care. Cyber is right behind that. And in our manufacturing programs are right behind that. And so we feel like having a new building, we’re gonna get a lot more student interest once they see the technologies and the opportunities ahead,” Whirl said.
ADVANCED MANUFACTURING AT AUGUSTA TECH:
|Architectural and engineer drafting technology||Diploma||5||1|
|Architectural and engineer drafting technology||Associate of Applied Science||34||32|
|Electrical/computer engineering technology||Associate of Applied Science||49||56|
|Industrial mechanical systems||Diploma||17||19|
|Industrial systems technology||Associate of Applied Science||27||20|
|Mechanical engineering technology||Associate of Applied Science||61||47|
|Mechatronics technology||Associate of Applied Science||8||9|
|Nuclear engineering technology||Associate of Applied Science||51||38|
|Nuclear science technology||Technical Certificate of Credit||3||-|
|Welding and joining technology||Diploma||210||190|
The college said it looks forward to announcing the location of the facility as well as a major donor that will support this project in the upcoming months.
“We’re finishing up the architectural renderings and then from there, we’ll start the actual construction,” Whirl said.
It’s the latest of many good things happening at Augusta Tech.
The college recently announced it’s taking over the Augusta Municipal Golf Course, known as The Patch, as part of its golf course management program, then about a month ago, the legendary Augusta National Golf Club said it’s joining the collaboration.
In November, the college got its third $1 million gift toward developing its new automotive service training center in the Laney Walker neighborhood.
And in January, the college took over the remodeled University Summerville Hospital, which has become its new health sciences campus.
As far as the golf program, Whirl said:
“We will not take ownership of the patch until Jan. 1, 2025. So between now in that time period, we’ll be talking to the community getting stakeholder input. And in starting on architectural drawings of what the new Patch will look like, what the new clubhouse renovated clubhouse will look like, and so we will have time to ensure a lot of stakeholder buy-in as a part of that process.”
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