DENVILLE, NJ – The Denville-based Morris County Vocational School District (MCVSD) and the County College of Morris (CCM) held a groundbreaking ceremony on Sept. 27 for a new Career Training Center located on CCM’s campus.
The joint endeavor will open doors and improve lives by enabling Morris County students to pursue in-demand educational and career pathways while earning high school and college credits simultaneously, said the schools.
“When this new building is complete, we will be able to serve an additional 500 students from Morris County in their junior and senior years,” said MCVSD Superintendent Scott Moffitt. “They will have access to a variety of career training programs while also gaining college credits and industry credentials.”
CCM President Anthony Iacono agreed. “This is a day where students win and Morris County, the diamond of New Jersey, gets even better,” he said. “The mission of CCM is dedicated to empowering individuals to achieve their educational goals for a brighter tomorrow and fostering regional, economic development and growth. Our partnership resulting in this cutting-edge facility further enhances our thriving initiatives and collaborations with the community.”
George Milonas ’98, who is chairman of the CCM Board of Trustees, said, “This early college program significantly scales what we have long been doing with the Morris County Vocational School District. Our partnership will allow students to focus on high-demand careers, not only enriching the lives of students but also helping to meet the demands of the many employers here in Morris County.”
Today’s initiative called upon the pre-existing partnership between CCM and MCVSD affording high school students the possibility to acquire college credits in programs such as culinary and hospitality, engineering, manufacturing and music technology, as well as industry certifications and the pathway to an associate degree at CCM.
The expansion will use a dual-enrollment model, which provides an opportunity to earn high school and college credits simultaneously while at MCVSD. Its primary emphasis will be on offering students the chance to earn up to 20 college credits and industry-recognized credentials while engaging in work-based and project-based learning experiences, said the districts.
“This project will be built with exactly what our students are looking for today,” said state Senator Anthony Bucco. “An opportunity to get a head start, an opportunity to get a great education, an opportunity to explore fields in the STEM industry, in healthcare, where the demand is high and where they can succeed. This is what today is all about.”
“The skill set that this career center will teach and enhance involves fields such as artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, supply chain management and healthcare. We are not just groundbreaking for a building; we are doing much more,” said Morris County Commission Director John Krickus. “We are providing skills for our residents to build a career. A career will provide a good income, building a home and family. Skilled employees allow companies to innovate, and create products right here in Morris County, USA.”
Assemblywoman Aura Dunn said “the younger generation is looking for more specialty fields, they want to have curriculum that focuses on going right to work with high-paying positions, post-college.”
This initiative is made possible by funds from Morris County and the Securing Our Children’s Future Bond Act made possible by the New Jersey Legislature.
The project has a proposed opening date of 2024.
Iacono thanked Moffitt for his vision and courage to share ideas, the team at CCM, including the Board of Trustees and Foundation, the team at MCVSD, Randolph Township, the county commissioners, county administrators and county clerk, state legislators and federal officers.
“Shovels are in the ground as we begin to transform the landscape here at CCM,” said Moffitt. “Without their belief in our vision for this program, none of this would be possible.”
Read this article as it originally appeared Sept. 27, 2023 in TAPintoDenville.