By Dani Palmer
The Herald Bulletin
ANDERSON, Ind. — Now that $20 million is safely in the bag for a new Ivy Tech Community College campus in Anderson, it’s time to raise that last bit needed to get the building ready to go by summer 2015.
Ivy Tech is seeking $4 million in private donations to finish the campus.
“We got the go-ahead,” said Anderson’s Vice Chancellor Jim Willey. “Now it’s time to start on the next phase and we need the community’s help to bring that to fruition.”
A capital campaign committee with local leaders was gathered in 2009 when the project was announced. Willey said it’s time to bring them back together.
Sally DeVoe, executive director of the Madison County Community Foundation and board trustee of Ivy Tech’s Regional Board, noted those from 2009 are still interested and that there’s been a “renewed vigor” for support.
“The community has a history of reaching out,” Ivy Tech President Tom Snyder, a resident of Anderson, said.
He added that the 38 acres of land donated by the city along Interstate 69 is definitely a part of that outreach.
The campus will be in a great location to serve students from Middletown and Daleville over to Lapel and Frankton, he said, and I-69 from Fort Wayne to Indianapolis is a corridor for manufacturing jobs that could lead to partnerships.
There are “all sorts of opportunities” with the new campus, City Director of Economic Development Greg Winkler said, as the community college helps Anderson develop economically and educate residents.
City and Ivy Tech leaders just need to “see how to maximize that so everybody wins,” Winkler added. A goal they’re discussing.
DeVoe said a new campus will help “create a positive environment economically for Madison County” as more students travel to or move to the area to take classes, spending more locally.
And a new building will help train more workers, she added.
The reason Ivy Tech began to seek approval for a new building in Anderson was because there’s been so much growth in enrollment. The main campus at 53rd Street is already at capacity, Willey said.
With the 3 to 5 percent year-to-year growth Anderson has seen in recent years, Snyder said, the added space could present an opportunity for Anderson’s campus numbers to double within the decade.
More adults are wanting to get degrees or certificates, he added, especially in fields like advanced manufacturing.
“I think it is an indicator that the state recognizes the critical role community colleges play in talent development and education,” Snyder said of the State Budget Committee’s approval of three Ivy Tech expansions in Anderson, Bloomington and Indianapolis.
The committee approved $20 million in 2009 bonding authority for Anderson’s project on Wednesday. The donations used for the rest of funding will help with inflation, Snyder said.
“We really rely on community leaders — those entities that have investments in Anderson and Madison County,” Willey said.