For Immediate Release - Southwest Tennessee Community College

Date: September 15, 2010

Southwest Tennessee Community College Supports Partnership for Construction of New Educational Center in Fayette County

Southwest Tennessee Community College has teamed up with leading educational institutions and community and business leaders of Fayette County to follow through on plans to construct a multi-level educational institution in Fayette County. The Fayette County Education Committee met in August and granted Fayette County Mayor Rhea "Skip" Taylor, who has just been re-elected to a third term, authorization to pursue funding for the center.

According to the Fayette Falcon August 4 edition, Vice-Chairman Sissy Dowdle reported that the committee discussed the higher education facility which will house adjunct venues for Southwest, the University of Memphis, the University of Tennessee-Martin, and the Tennessee Technology Center at Whiteville. After reviewing several locations, Dowdle said the informal committee, comprising commissioners and Somerville aldermen, chose the Fowler property located on Hwy 64 in Somerville because of its size, 10 acres, and the availability of an option for eight additional acres.

"The Fayette County Higher Educational Center will bring the needed training and education to enhance our great location. The investment in education will not only bring our workforce to the level that businesses need, but the facility itself will attract and spur investment throughout Fayette County," stated Mayor Taylor.

Executive Director of Community and Corporate Relations Russell Shelton of Southwest indicated that the effort to build an educational center in Fayette County started about seven years ago. Shelton said, "The long-term benefits of the new Fayette County Higher Educational Center are to provide this community the option to attend a postsecondary institution without traveling outside the county, provide for future and current economic development, and increase opportunities for a better educated workforce. The educational institution will work closely to provide corporate training for employees of business and industry that locate within the $40 million State Industrial Mega Site and other existing business and industry."

Southwest President Nathan L. Essex is very optimistic about the potential impact of the facility and said, "This facility will provide incredible opportunities for students and professionals to pursue their educational and career goals. Additionally, it will be an asset to business and industry by providing education and training for their personnel. This facility will enhance economic growth and development and improve the quality of life for citizens in Fayette County and surrounding areas."

Drawings for a 26,000 square-foot building were prepared by TLM Associates, Jackson, TN.

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Photo Caption: Architectural rendering for the proposed Fayette County Higher Educational Center.

For more information contact: Brenda J. Rayner, (901) 333-4247, bjrayner@southwest.tn.edu, Farris Bldg., Room 1002, 5983 Macon Cove, Memphis, TN 38134