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Joint UW, Casper College Facility Moves Forward with Lease Agreement
March 4, 2011 — A joint facility to be shared by the University of Wyoming and Casper College will provide new and better space for students and forge a stronger bond between the schools for many years to come.
University of Wyoming trustees today (Friday) approved a 50-year lease agreement to share space at a planned $32 million facility at Casper College. The Casper College trustees approved the agreement in late February. The agreement follows several years of discussion and planning to consolidate all of UW's Casper academic operations to a Casper College location, achieving both schools' goals to continue to provide quality higher education opportunities in Wyoming.
UW will contribute $16 million through a $6 million cash contribution generated from historic federal mineral royalty payments and from a $10 million issuance of revenue bonds authorized by the Wyoming State Legislature. Casper College will contribute $16 million through general obligation bonds that were approved by Natrona County voters.
UW President Tom Buchanan says the facility is part of an effort to increase the university's presence at community colleges to help offer more learning opportunities, including baccalaureate and graduate programs and other assistance.
"This new facility will increase UW's presence in central Wyoming," says Brent Pickett, director of the UW/Casper College Center. "UW/CC has been in Casper for 35 years and we will now have the space and quality facilities to move us into a new era."
This spring, 321 students are enrolled in UW credit courses offered through UW/CC, with many more scheduled to attend professional development courses during the semester. The most popular credit programs are education and social work. Last year, 119 students graduated from UW programs in Casper, including 48 in elementary education, seven in industrial technology education and 12 in social work. Students also earned degrees in biology, communication, criminal justice, ecology, English, humanities and fine arts, journalism, mathematics and science, nursing, political science, psychology, secondary education, social science and social work.
For more information about the UW/CC Center, go to the website at www.uwyo.edu/outreach/uwcc/index.html.
Katelyn Rhoades of Gillette, left, a senior psychology and statistics major, and Kinley Wake of Worland, a senior business administration and pre-law major, are among hundreds of students taking courses offered through the University of Wyoming/Casper College Center. (UW Photo)