Roane State to host groundbreaking for new Fentress County Higher Education Center

Roane State will host a groundbreaking celebration for its new Fentress County Higher Education Center on Friday, April 5, 2024. The event will be held at the site of the new campus in Jamestown.

The Center is expected to be complete by Fall 2025. Once open, Roane State’s local campus (currently in Clarkrange) will relocate to the new site along with the Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT) Oneida/Huntsville.

The 49,000-square-foot facility will offer associate degrees and certificates in multiple programs from both colleges, including health science, automotive and diesel technology, welding, construction, and manufacturing technology. These credit programs will educate “job ready” students, preparing them for in-demand professions.

“The enhanced educational opportunities provided by this facility will allow our young adults to acquire the skills needed to land well-paying jobs close to home,” said Senator Ken Yager. “I want to thank Rep. Kelly Keisling, former Rep. John Mark Windle, County Executive Jimmy Johnson and the County Commission for their continued support of this project.”

“We are so pleased to see this new campus being built and the investment Roane State is making in our community,” said Fentress County Executive Jimmy Johnson. “Not only will the Center expand offerings for current students and adults returning to college, but it will also help us retain graduates in our area to meet local workforce needs.”

The Tennessee General Assembly approved a $25 million budget for the project in 2022 and the State Building Commission approved funding for the early design phase in December 2023. Temporary facility signage was installed at the entrance to the site in January, with pre-groundwork expected to begin soon.

“I know the people of Fentress County are thrilled to see this project move forward and we couldn’t be more pleased with the level of support from our many partners over the past few years,” said Roane State President Chris Whaley. “We hope everyone can join us as we officially break ground on this new campus. It will truly be a community-wide celebration.”

Invitations have been distributed, but the event on Friday, April 5, will also be open to the public. The groundbreaking is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. central time. Attendees should follow signage placed at the site for parking on the day of the event.

Roane State’s current campus in Fentress County is located at 6844 South York Highway. The new Fentress County Higher Education Center will be constructed on the 33-acre site located at 823 Old Highway 127 S in Jamestown.

Questions can be directed to Tamsin Miller in the RSCC President’s Office by emailing miller@roanestate.edu.

About Brad Jones

Brad is the Owner/Operator of BBB TV 12, and has been with the company since August of 1996. Brad is a 1987 graduate of Coalfield High School and a 1995 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Communications. He won the 1995 broadcast production student of the year award. Brad worked at Shop at Home, Inc. a home shopping network that was located in Knoxville, TN from 1993 - 1995 and then at Via TV (RSTV, Inc.) from 1995 - 1996. After some freelance work in Nashville, Brad joined the BBB Communications staff in August of 1996. A short stint at WVLT TV as a news photographer was in 2001, but he continued to work at BBB TV as well. Brad is married to Nicole Jenkins Jones, a 1990 graduate of Oak Ridge High School, who works at Oak Ridge Gastroenterology and Associates in Oak Ridge. They have 3 kids, Trevor Bogard, 27, Chandler 22, and Naomi 13. On December 12, 2013 they welcomed their first grandchild, Carter Ryan Bogard. Brad is also the assistant boys basketball coach at Coalfield High School for the past 11 years. In 2013-14 the Yellow Jackets won their first district title since 1991 and just the 4th in school history.

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