The three-story, 80,000 square-foot building cost $15,072,285 to build with another $2.5 million spent to furnish and equip the facility. The Medical Technology Building will house the Dental Assisting, Medical Assisting, Orthopaedic Technology, Pharmacy Technology, Practical Nursing, Radiologic Technology, Respiratory Care Technology, Surgical Technology, Emergency Medical Technician and Paramedicine programs.
It includes 12 classrooms, two biology labs and a chemistry lab, as well as offices for faculty and staff as well as the academic dean of the medical related programs of study. Many of these programs had been housed in double-wide trailers on the campus, Peters noted.
He cited that contrast, from trailers to a state-of-the-art building, as well as the contrast in temperatures from the groundbreaking in 100-degree weather in July of last year to the near freezing temperatures Thursday morning. Bonnie Pfrogner, executive director of the Griffin-Spalding County Chamber of Commerce, said, “compared to the groundbreaking, this yankee girl appreciates the crisp, sunny day.”
With this building, Pfrogner said, “Southern Crescent Technical College has made the move from being a success to being significant. This will be an asset to the county and to the surrounding area.”
State Representative John Yates noted he’s opened this building five times now in various stages.
“I look what’s here now, it’s fantastic,” he said.
Yates joked, “it always thrills a 91-year-old guy to open a new medical building.”
He said when he goes in for tests and check-ups, “I always ask the technician, where did you go to school. Most answer Griffin Tech or Southern Crescent.”
Yates remembered opening of each building as the campus grew, and noted his own education began next door as he was a graduate of Spalding County High, Yates and fellow representative David Knight cited the need for the new facility.
“It’s been a need of this community and this college for some time,” Knight said. “For a long time this college has stood out. It bucked the trend, enrollment continued to grow.”
Some of the speakers at Thursday’s ceremony were also alumni of the college when it was Griffin Techical College, including County Commission Chairman Gwen Flowers-Taylor, J. Michaeal Brewer, who is chairman of the SCTC board of directors, and local businessman John Tidwell, whose company Impact Office Interiors sponsored Thursday’s events and was the furniture contractor for the facility.
Tidwell said he obtained his GED from Griffin Tech at age 34 and took accounting classes. He said his wife, a nurse manager, also graduated and said his daughter would be attending too,
“I see opportunity people wouldn’t have,” he said of SCTC.
Flowers-Taylor said she began her nursing career at Griffin Tech. “I don’t think they’ll ever make a machine that will ask ‘how are you doing?’ and be able to read people’s feelings.”
She said, “I look forward to graduates coming out of this building to serve our community.”
Brewer said he attended Griffin Tech for EMT training before changing careers. He’s now county manager in Butts County and serves as chairman of the SCTC Foundation.