Southeast Community College plays a vital role for our communities in southeast Nebraska by bridging the higher education affordability gap for many students and families, as well as filling the need for qualified workers in Nebraska.
Southeast Community College has the potential to directly address the increasing demand for qualified workers and the higher education affordability gap. To do this, we need to modernize, renovate, rebuild, and expand to meet the needs of our students, families and communities. We have waiting lists for our popular programs like welding and nursing, and a need for more employees for businesses in these fields. And with the growing population in southeast Nebraska, there will be even more need for open access to education, lower cost alternatives and proper training for real jobs.
In July 2015, Southeast Community College implemented its new 2015-2019 Strategic Plan to meet student, employer and community needs throughout the College’s 15-county service area. The plan is designed to address two critical barriers to economic expansion and community growth in southeast Nebraska: a lack of qualified workers in career and technical fields and a need for an affordable option for a four-year degree.
As a part of its 2015-2019 Strategic Plan, the College commissioned The Clark Enersen Partners to conduct a comprehensive Facilities Master Plan. The process, which occurred over an 18-month period, involved an assessment of existing conditions of all facilities, a space needs analysis for current and future growth based on demographic and employment trends, and master plan recommendations for current campus locations, as well as new locations.
Recommendations come directly from the community. The facilities master planning process involved community workshops, surveys, public forums, and planning sessions with the campus communities and the SCC Board of Governors. It also involved a benchmarking process that reviewed peer institutions. The assessment phase of the process revealed that the majority of SCC’s facilities were dated and in need of replacement or renovation.
The proposed SCC Facilities Master Plan projects are designed to address the lack of a qualified workforce in career/technical fields and the rising costs of a four-year degree. Potential impacts of the proposed plan include:
Based on the feedback from our communities, the facilities assessment and an independent needs analysis, the proposed Facilities Master Plan projects include:
The proposed projects would modernize SCC’s facilities and programs and position the College to meet current and future employer, student and community demand.
The renovation and construction components of the Facilities Master Plan could be paid for through general obligation bonds, which would require voter approval. The estimated tax levy would be 3.9 cents per $100 of property valuation for the maximum bond amount of $369 million, meaning a person owning property worth $100,000 would pay property taxes of an additional $39 a year until the bond is paid. The bonds would be issued in a series so that the levy would initially be less than $39 a year per $100,000 of property. The SCC Board of Governors recently authorized the College’s President to move forward on the preparation process to place the bond issue on the November 2016 ballot.