Blue Ridge Electric Cooperative awarded the College's Foundation a $100,000 grant to help fund the building of a Tri-County Technical College campus that will be located in the Oconee Industry and Technology Park on Highway 11 in Westminster.  Pictured from left are Joel Davis, Blue Ridge board member, Oconee County; Grayson Kelly, executive director of the Foundation; Len Talley, Blue Ridge board member, Oconee County; Dr. Ronnie L. Booth, president of Tri-County; Alan Blackmon, Blue Ridge manager of engineering; Mendel Stone, Blue Ridge board member, Oconee County; Galen DeHay, senior vice president at Tri-County; and Dan Cooper, director of economic development and government relations at the College.

The planned multi-faceted complex will co-locate an Oconee Campus of Tri-County Technical College, a new career center for high school students, adult education facilities, and county economic development offices.  Blue Ridge will provide electric service to the new campus, as well as to the rest of the commerce park, which is situated within the cooperative's assigned territory.  Beginning in 2015, the cooperative's grant is to be paid to Tri-County in equal annual installments over a five-year period.

This new partnership among the College, Oconee County School District, and Oconee County will create the Oconee County Workforce Development Center for technical education, work-based learning, and economic development.  The Oconee Industry and Technology Park was chosen as the top site because of its size and its proximity to all four of the county's public high schools.

 "We have the opportunity to create a dynamic center where education, economic development, workforce training, and industry come together in ways we have yet to imagine," said Dr. Booth. "In addition, co-location will save money through shared infrastructure, labs, and equipment."