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Livingston School Board takes step toward getting community college

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LIVINGSTON, Louisiana — The Livingston Parish School Board has agreed to give 12.3 acres of undeveloped land to the state in exchange for a community and technical college.

Under the terms of the cooperative endeavor agreement, the school board will transfer a tract of land behind the Livingston Parish Literacy and Technology Center in Walker for the construction of a Northshore Technical Community College campus.

The Advocate reports (http://bit.ly/1HulHy2 ) the National Center for Higher Education Statistics has determined Livingston Parish was ripe for a new college campus.

NTCC Chancellor Will Wainwright said the government study determined the area would especially benefit from training more students in high-demand fields like health science, advanced manufacturing and nursing.

College leaders have not yet determined what courses will be offered at the new campus. Many details are still being hammered out. NTCC still needs to drum up about $200,000 in local funding and has not committed to a groundbreaking date.

Wainwright expects the construction to cost about $5 million in total, though the state will foot most of the bill. The chancellor estimates somewhere between 500 and 700 students may enroll in classes when the site is completed; however, depending on the course catalogue, the school "could exceed that, easily."

Between online classes in fields like criminal justice and high school students, who will dual enroll with parish schools, the number of students could rise "well over 1,000," Wainwright said.

The new NTCC campus will be built next to the Literacy and Technology Center, a joint venture between the parish and Southeastern Louisiana University. SLU administrators see their soon-to-be neighbors as a boon, as the two schools have collaborated in the past.

Livingston Superintendent John Watson said the parish had been working with the state for over a year on the agreement for the future NTCC site.


Information from: The Advocate, http://theadvocate.com

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