MCC to renovate learning spaces

When Robin Lilienthal was hired as provost of Marshalltown Community College in 2010, she said one of her focuses will be to improve the learning areas for students.

A project in 2014 will do just that.

“We don’t need the Taj Mahal, but we really do need effective learning spaces,” Lilienthal said.

MCC has hired an architect to begin the design phase to renovate spaces for two major programs – health occupations and advanced manufacturing. The project is expected to cost more than $2 million and will be paid for by state money through Accelerated Career Education (ACE) funding.

The advanced manufacturing area includes machine tool technology, industrial maintenance technology and other programs. The goal is to bring these programs together under a shared space and to modernize the equipment.

In health occupations, programs such as nursing and other medical training would benefit from renovated learning areas.

Both of these projects would not only improve areas for instruction for students receiving credit hours, but also the post-employment training done at the college through Continuing Education.

A preliminary timeline has work beginning in January and being completed by August 2014. That would mean there would be some shuffling around of programs during the spring semester of 2014 at MCC.

“We will be getting creative about how we offer those courses,” Lilienthal said.

Lilienthal said while they will deal with a little dust here and there next year, the end result will be something the college can be proud to have.

“It’s time to renovate both of these spaces,” Lilienthal said. “It’s critical to student learning success.”