ACC opens first two bond-funded facilities

Alamance Community College has opened its first two new buildings – a Biotechnology Center of Excellence and student services center – that were funded by the $39.6 million bond package voters approved for ACC in November 2018.

The $19.4 million, 32,000-square foot Biotechnology Center of Excellence is located at the northern tip of ACC’s Graham campus, near the intersection of I-85/40 with Jimmie Kerr Road. The biotech center houses five science programs: Biotechnology, Histotechnology, Medical Laboratory Technology, and Agricultural Biotechnology.

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Above and below, examples of several biomanufacturing lab spaces inside ACC’s new Biotech Center of Excellence.

Outdoor space

ACC has also opened a new $6.7 million student services center that spans 12,200 square feet and fronts Jimmie Kerr Road. That facility consolidated the college’s admissions, registrar, financial aid, and cashier’s office under a single roof.

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When the idea of establishing a Biotech Center of Excellence at ACC was conceived nearly eight years ago, it was envisioned as a facility to not only give ACC students hands-on training for careers in biomanufacturing but also as a hub for workforce development that would help meet a need for skilled workers who are in high demand among companies in Alamance County, as well as the Piedmont-Triad region and across the state.

ACC officials have long said that the community college is ideally positioned – literally in the middle of what industry leaders call the state’s most active biotechnology corridor – to meet the needs of employers. Burlington is ranked as the country’s number-one small Metropolitan Statistical Area for biotech research, testing, and medical labs.

“This project is about more than raising a hammer to build this magnificent facility,” ACC president Dr. Algie Gatewood said at a recent ribbon-cutting ceremony. “A Center of Excellence leverages an expertise vital to regional business and industry. A Center of Excellence hosts a unique cluster of programs that are critical to job skills training and workforce development.”

A grand opening for ACC’s two new facilities drew numerous local elected officials.

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