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Community college plans delayed

December 06, 2000

Community college plans delayed



By DAVE McMILLION / Staff Writer, Charles Town


MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Plans to begin offering community college classes in Martinsburg are likely to be delayed, a Shepherd College official said Wednesday.

Shepherd officials had hoped to begin classes at the former Blue Ridge Outlet Center next month, but they have determined that will be difficult, said Peter Checkovich, provost of Shepherd's Community and Technical College.

There was a concern that if classes were started at the school's current location in Shepherdstown, W.Va., and then moved to Martinsburg in the middle of the semester, it would be too disruptive for students, Checkovich said.

"They have already got their baby-sitting arranged and transportation services lined up for one location," Checkovich said.

The school, however, may be able to start up some computer classes in the outlet complex in late February or March, Checkovich said.

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College officials had expected the initial classes to include computer certification, criminal justice and paralegal work.

Lease negotiations with Blue Ridge Outlet officials have been going on for months.

Community and Technical College officials announced in July they planned to move their operations out of Shepherdstown and into the outlet center, a more central site for students in the Eastern Panhandle.

After a review by two state boards, the go-ahead for the move was given earlier this month, although the Higher Education Policy Commission would not let the college seek $150,000 it had hoped to pursue from the West Virginia Legislature.

The college estimates it will cost about $3.1 million for a five-year move of the community and technical college. It is currently housed on one floor in a Shepherd College building.

Checkovich said college officials have been discussing ways of how to raise the needed money.

Meanwhile, a full slate of classes will be offered "most assuredly in the fall" of 2001, Checkovich said Wednesday.

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