MATTOON – Governor Pat Quinn today announced a $9.8 million state investment through his Illinois Jobs Now! construction program to revitalize the Lake Land College Workforce Development Center in Mattoon. The project will upgrade the facility to create a state-of-the-art sustainable workforce training center designed to meet the needs of regional business and industry through new and incumbent worker training. The project will address the local skills gap while creating jobs and supporting local economic growth.
Today’s announcement is part of Governor Quinn’s agenda to drive Illinois’ economy forward by creating jobs and ensuring that all people have access to quality education.
“Today’s investment will help Lake Land College enhance training opportunities for students and businesses alike,” Governor Quinn said. “Through regional partnerships with industry and economic development organizations, Lake Land’s graduates will have the skills they need to continue building our strong workforce. In Illinois we understand how important it is to invest in education and the future of all residents.”
“Lake Land College is grateful to Governor Quinn for recognizing the importance of a skilled workforce in sustaining and growing our local economies,” Lake Land College President Josh Bullock said. “With his support, Lake Land College and Illinois community colleges are able to form partnerships with employers that drive our regional and state economy, keeping jobs here in Illinois.”
The Workforce Development Center, located at 305 Richmond Ave. East, Mattoon, will be a one-stop center to train students for in-demand careers at area businesses and industries. It will include technical training labs, classrooms, computer labs and conference facilities. The renovated center will enhance the college’s existing facility to include more workforce development partners. The $13 million project includes $9.8 million in state and $3.2 million in local funds. The construction project will be managed by the Illinois Capital Development Board.
The Lake Land College Workforce Development Center houses the College’s Center for Business and Industry, Community and Professional Programs, Adult Education, GED programming, Pathways Alternative High School, Traffic Safety, TRIO Destination College, Manufacturing Skills Lab and CDL Truck Driver Training. In addition, partners such as the Workforce Investment Act offices are located in the facility.
Governor Quinn previously allocated funds for the Luther Student Services Center at Lake Land College. Today’s investment will also provide additional support for the construction of a new Culinary Arts training center, for a total investment of $18.5 million in the Luther Student Center expansion. This new programming is another way in which the college is providing new and responsive training opportunities to drive the area economy forward. Construction will begin on this project next year.
Lake Land College serves more than 20,000 students a year through its degree, certificate and short-term training opportunities. Serving a 4,000-square-mile area, the college district is one of the largest in the state of Illinois. Governor Quinn’s $31 billion Illinois Jobs Now! program is supporting more than 439,000 jobs over six years. Illinois Jobs Now! is the largest capital construction program in Illinois history, and is one of the largest capital construction programs in the nation.