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News Release

Date: August 29, 2006
Media Contact: Elizabeth Homan, 301-251-7970; Steve Simon, 301-251-7952

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Montgomery College Opens New Student Services Center at the Oldest Campus in Takoma Park/Silver Spring
Building Marks the Completion of Phase Two of Campus Expansion Plans

PHOTO EDITORS: For high-resolution images of the building, click on these links: studentservices1.jpg and studentservices2.jpg.

Montgomery College students at the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus will start their academic year with the benefit of a new, state-of-the-art Student Services Center. The opening marks the completion of phase two in a three-phase expansion project that has brought new life to the College’s oldest campus.

Montgomery College President Charlene Nunley and the Board of Trustees were joined at the grand opening by Montgomery County Executive Doug Duncan, County Council President George Leventhal, State Senator Ida Ruben, Delegate Sheila Hixson, Takoma Park Mayor Kathy Porter, other elected officials, and community and college leaders.

“The new Student Services Center is a truly a crown jewel for the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus and it has instantly transformed the character and the quality of the campus itself,” said Montgomery College President Charlene R. Nunley. “It gives our students one-stop access to a wide variety of services that had previously been scattered around campus in facilities that were either too small or inadequate for today’s needs.”

At more than 110,500 square feet, the Student Services Center will provide services to students who are looking to apply to college, register for classes, receive academic advising, and learn about financial aid. The building, located at the intersection of Fenton Street and New York Avenue, houses offices for admissions, financial aid, student life, and advising. It also features a cafeteria, a student bookstore, conference and meeting rooms, a student lounge, five high tech computer classrooms, and two open computer labs for students. Additionally, wireless Internet access is available throughout the building.

“The new Student Services Center is a wonderful addition to our campus,” said Brad J. Stewart, vice president and provost of the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus. “It will be a great benefit to our students, faculty, and staff, and to the community.”

The second floor of the Student Services Center exits to a covered pedestrian bridge, which extends across Fenton Street and the nearby Metrorail tracks. The bridge allows students and the community easy access to both Jesup Blair Park and to the College’s Health Sciences Center, located on Georgia Avenue in south Silver Spring.

“I am very proud that under my administration, Montgomery County has funded the College’s Takoma Park/Silver Spring campus expansion – which is the largest community college expansion in the state of Maryland,” said Montgomery County Executive Douglas M. Duncan. “Over the past 11 years, Montgomery County has invested $612 million in funding for Montgomery College – an increase of 126 percent. This record funding has allowed the College to grow and accommodate an increasing and diverse student population – and positioned Montgomery County to meet the need for a highly educated work force.”

Jointly funded by the State of Maryland and Montgomery County, the construction cost for the Student Services Center was $25 million. Einhorn Yaffee Prescott Architecture and Engineering P.C. planned and designed the building. Bovis Lend Lease, Inc. served as the construction management firm. Total cost of the center, including design, furniture, and equipment, was $32.9 million.

The Student Services Center marks the completion of phase two in the three-phase, $143 million Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus expansion project. Phase one included the realignment of Fenton Street and the construction of the College’s new Health Sciences Center, which was dedicated in January 2004. The Health Sciences Center houses the College’s credit and non-credit health sciences programs and the Holy Cross Hospital Health Center, a primary care clinic for uninsured or underinsured adults. Also included in the initial phase of the project was the construction of a pedestrian bridge, which crosses the Metrorail tracks and connects the Takoma Park side of the campus with the new portion along Georgia Avenue, in Silver Spring.

The third phase of the expansion project will include the renovation and transformation of the former Giant Food bakery building into a new visual arts center, adjacent to the College’s Health Sciences Center. Currently under construction and scheduled to open in 2007, the visual arts center will become the new home for the visual arts programs at the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus and the School of Art and Design at Montgomery College. The building will feature classrooms, offices, an art gallery, and outdoor sculpture studio. Additionally, the College will rent studio space to community artists, who will in turn offer opportunities for students and community members to watch them work.

The final building in the third phase of the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus expansion project will be a new cultural arts center at Georgia Avenue and East-West Highway. The center, scheduled to open for classes in 2009, will include a 500-seat performing arts venue, a 125-seat workshop theatre, dance studio and classrooms for College and community use.

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Montgomery College is a public, open admissions community college with campuses in Germantown, Rockville, and Takoma Park/Silver Spring, plus workforce development/continuing education centers and off-site programs throughout Montgomery County, Md. The College serves more than 55,000 students a year, through both credit and noncredit programs, in more than 100 areas of study.

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