St. Louis-based Ranken Technical College, in collaboration with the Lincoln County R-III School District, the State of Missouri, Lincoln County, and the City of Troy, is establishing a new campus in Troy, Missouri. Ranken will provide secondary and post-secondary education and training for the region, and initially focus on the emerging technologies of aquaponics, advanced manufacturing, renewable energy, as well as building and construction trades.
A groundbreaking ceremony was held at the site of the new campus located at 651 John Deere Drive in Troy on June 17. Students will be able to begin classes this academic year and move to the new, nearly 25,000 square foot facility in the fall of 2021. Governor Mike Parson will be on-site for the groundbreaking as well as Missouri State Representative Randy Pietzman, Missouri State Senator Jeanie Riddle, Missouri Department of Economic Development Director Rob Dixon, and Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner Dr. Margie Vandeven.
“The Lincoln County R-III School District and Board of Education are thankful for the support of our legislators, Senator Jeannie Riddle and Representative Randy Pietzman, that made this project possible as well as Ranken, Lincoln County, and the City of Troy,” said Lincoln County R-III School District Superintendent Mark S. Penny. “Partnerships like these are vital in moving our community forward. We could not be more thrilled to be able to provide these local opportunities for our students and community. Based on student interest and employer needs, we are looking forward to these programs being a success for all.”
The facility is projected to cost around $5,000,000, and the County has submitted a grant to the Economic Development Administration, which, if approved, will provide up to 80% reimbursement. An additional $1,000,000 in funding was previously allocated by the State of Missouri, facilitated by Senator Riddle and Representative Pietzman, to aid in workforce development in Lincoln County.
“One of Missouri’s strongest economic development assets is our skilled workforce,” Missouri Department of Economic Development Director Rob Dixon said. “Ranken’s presence in Lincoln County will greatly benefit students and our state as we continue to provide Missourians with the skills they need for quality jobs.”
The Lincoln County campus will offer programs based upon the Ranken model of work-based learning with an apprentice-styled, microenterprise structure. Students gain experience, industry certifications, and earnings from working with established industry leaders. At the same time, regional companies have access to skilled talent and resources.
“Lincoln County firmly believes an educated, skilled workforce is essential to the success and economic growth of our community, which is why we have agreed to provide $100,000 a year for three years for instructional support,” said Julie Rodgers, Lincoln County Economic Development Director. “We believe the key to this success involves accessible education opportunities. The partnership between Ranken Technical College, Lincoln County, and the Lincoln County R-III School District strengthens this vision for our community.”
The Lincoln County Economic Development office plans to host an information breakfast in July so that businesses and industries can learn more about benefiting from the Workforce Development Center. The Office will release details as soon as they are available.
The Ranken-West curriculum will have a 9th-14th grade structure, with students in grades 9-10 focused on academics and career exploration. During grades 11-13, they will focus on career skill development and work-based learning. Upon completing the requirements at this level, the students will earn associate degrees and/or professional certifications. Upon completing grade 14, the students will earn bachelor degrees of science in applied management.
“Ranken has a reputation for being one of the best technical schools in the nation, and has introduced a career education model that presents a major paradigm shift in education and workforce development,” said Ranken CEO Stan Shoun. “We understand the region’s shortage, as well as its demand, and are preparing students with the best education to help fill the gap in Missouri and the surrounding areas.”
Earlier this year, Ranken and the Lincoln County R-III School District announced a partnership whereby qualified Troy Buchanan High School students may enroll in classes at Ranken’s Wentzville campus in a dual enrollment program. The program enables the students to earn college credits for associate and bachelor degrees in a variety of technical fields, at little or no cost, while simultaneously completing their high school graduation requirements.
A new campaign is being launched to raise funds for a permanent scholarship fund aimed at assisting students in financial need at Ranken’s Wentzville and Troy campus locations. Those interested in donating to this fund may contact the Ranken development office for more information.
Ranken Technical College is a private, non-profit, degree-granting institution of higher learning whose primary mission is to provide the comprehensive education and training necessary to prepare students for employment and advancement in a variety of technical fields. For more information, visit www.ranken.edu.