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NewsMonday, February 13, 2012
Thanks to generous equipment and cash donations from the various members of the Mining Association of South Carolina (MASC), the association has surpassed its goal of soliciting $30,000 in equipment and cash donations from its members to outfit the new highway construction materials lab on Tri-County's Pendleton Campus.
Pictured from left are (front row) Serji Amirkhanian, Ph.D, director of research and development, Phoenix Industries and president and CEO, AET International Ltd.; Chris Smith, MASC executive director; Neal Barber, QC Supervisor, Lehigh Hanson & MASC Aggregate Committee chairman; and Dr. Ronnie L. Booth, president of Tri-County Technical College; (middle row) Charlie Bagley, SC Quality Control, Martin Marietta; Elliott Botzis, sales manager, Vulcan Materials; Mary Corley, program manager for Tri-County's Highway Construction Program in its Corporate and Community Education Division; Bobby Caulder, plant manager, Lehigh Hanson, Anderson Quarry; Elisabeth Gadd, director of development at Tri-County; and John Lummus, vice president for economic and institutional advancement at Tri-County; and (back row) Mike Dixon, quality control manager, Charlotte District, Martin Marietta; Jason Jackson, SC Quality Control, Vulcan Materials; and David Herndon, of Herndon Asphalt Engineering & Consulting.
MASC Members Make Equipment, Cash Donations to Outfit Tri-County’s New Highway Construction Materials Lab
CONTACT: MARY CORLEY, 646-2047 or firstname.lastname@example.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 2/12/2012
(By Lisa Garrett)
PENDLETON --- Eight months ago, the Mining Association of South Carolina (MASC) had a goal of soliciting $30,000 in equipment and cash donations from its members to outfit the new highway construction materials lab on Tri-County Technical College's Pendleton Campus.
A $100,000 donation by the SC Asphalt Pavement Association (SCAPA) kicked off this project last June. SCAPA's donation to the College will provide students with a state-of-the-art asphalt materials testing facility where they will receive hands-on training in Hot Mix Asphalt applications.
MASC members, who work in conjunction with SCAPA, were encouraged to support the lab, said Neal Barber, SC quality control manager for Hanson Aggregates in McConnells, SC, who spearheaded the fundraiser.
Thanks to generous equipment and cash donations from the various members of MASC, Tri-County is well on its way to offering training for quality control technicians in the highway construction materials field, he said.
Barber recalled that the goal was to get three major aggregate producers to commit to a goal of $30,000 in contributions to equip the lab.
"Currently we have $35,000 in contributions," said Barber. "I'm flabbergasted - I thought $30,000 was ambitious. We have far exceeded what we planned. We came up with an idea, a great idea, and seeing it implemented is tremendous in its impact on the community and our industry."
"The purpose of the lab is to provide a trained workforce for the highway construction industry, as well as to facilitate research with the potential to improve and encourage growth in the highway construction industry," said Mary Corley, program manager for Tri-County's Highway Construction Program in its Corporate and Community Education Division. The funds contributed by SCAPA and MASC are being used to purchase laboratory equipment for asphalt mix design and asphalt and aggregate testing, Corley added.
The construction materials training and research lab at Tri-County Technical College will ensure the future of a workforce with technical training in the field of highway construction materials technology. The lab is housed in McKissick Hall.
Barber thanked Vulcan Materials and Martin Marietta, along with Hanson Aggregates, for supporting the project and for making contributions to make it happen. "We began by saying 'wouldn't it be great if,' and now we can say 'look at what we've done' just six months later. In my world, that's a big deal."
"Thanks for your support. It's exactly what the College is all about -- connecting ideas to the marketplace," said Dr. Ronnie L. Booth, president of Tri-County. "This is a perfect example of integrating the College and the community. Thanks for believing in us."
In September 2010 the College began offering courses in the South Carolina Department of Transportation's (SC DOT) statewide technician certification program. This program provides the requirements an individual needs to seek certification as an SC DOT-certified inspector for work performed on construction projects.
More than 608 individuals completed SC DOT technician certification classes in 2011, said Corley. Tri-County is the only facility in the state that offers SC DOT certification courses in Hot Mix Asphalt, Coarse Aggregate, Earthwork and Foundations. In addition, Tri-County is currently developing a new Pavement Preservation technician certification program for SC DOT.