MURRAY -- Local community businesses and leaders have joined hands to assist the 370 Calloway County and Murray High students attending the new Murray-Calloway County Area Technology Center.
Located on Johnny Robertson Road, the state-of-the-art facility houses construction/carpentry, computerized machining and manufacturing, welding technology, culinary arts, pre-nursing and automotive technology classes. Students either attend morning or afternoon classes.
Local donors have contributed to the classrooms. Murray Mayor Jack Rose and his wife, Janice, donated tables and chairs for the construction/carpentry classes. Murray Mold and Die provided furniture for the machine tool classrooms. The Calloway and Murray Board of Educations bought the chairs inside the computer lab. The Murray Economic Development Corporation supplied the tables, chairs and bookcases for the welding classroom.
"We are very appreciative to these donors who allowed our students to have new furniture in their new building," said Bob Rogers, Murray Independent School District superintendent.
Tres Settle, Calloway County superintendent, said education is the responsibility of each generation to the next. "We are extremely fortunate and blessed that there are so many in this community who not only embrace this certainty, but support our schools with an eagerness that yields the academic and athletic accolades synonymous with the Calloway County and Murray Independent School districts."
Dan Hicks, technology center principal, said they are fortunate for the assistance the community has provided to the ATC students and programs. "We are extremely thankful that individuals see the need of our students and step up to fulfill their needs," he said.
The new ATC is a result of the 26-year agreement that was signed between the school districts in 2010. The agreement was the solution to the non-resident student agreement.
The mission of Career and Technical Education is to assist schools in providing students with skills necessary for a successful transition to postsecondary education or work and a desire for life-long learning in a global society.
Hicks said students gain life skills as well as career or non-career experience. Students have many options to choose from after high school graduation. They can choose to pursue a career in their area of study or further their education with a two-year or four-year degree after high school graduation. "The choice is theirs," Hicks explained. "Any path they choose they have been trained at our ATC to have a life skill that will remain with them throughout their life."
Ken Winters, chairman of Murray's Economic Development Corporation, said, "We encourage other organizations in our community to consider participating as we jointly support the development of the most outstanding Area Technology Center possible."