MONTPELIER -- The Community College of Vermont will open in its new location in the renovated Brooks House on Main Street in Brattleboro on Monday, August 11, 2014. CCV will share 18,000 square feet on the building's first and second floors with Vermont Technical College.
"This move puts CCV right in the heart of downtown Brattleboro and we expect the College to have better visibility and a stronger tie to the community in this new location," said CCV President Joyce Judy. "Our Landmark Hill facility is a bit off the beaten path and we have outgrown the space as well. Most importantly, I have heard from a number of students and staff members who say they are very excited to be in the new, modern space and in a convenient spot for enjoying the city."
In April 2011 the Brooks House was destroyed by a fire that swept through the upper floors of the building. Not quite five months later Brattleboro was struck by Tropical Storm Irene, which caused severe flooding in the region and downtown. Shortly thereafter an investment team took the steps necessary to restore the landmark building which has been at the center of downtown Brattleboro since its construction in 1871. During this process, the Community College of Vermont committed to a move to the downtown location, signing a 10-year lease (two five year options) with the owners.
CCV is Vermont's second largest college, serving nearly 7,000 students each semester. In Brattleboro, the College serves 300 students and employs eight full-time staff members and 25 part-time faculty members.
"From my perspective the importance of the Brooks house coming back online simply cannot be overstated," Patrick Moreland, Brattleboro's interim town manager said. "It has been three years since the fire and the flood and in that time downtown businesses and the community as a whole have struggled."
The design of the new facility also reflects the shift towards STEM-focused (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) educational priorities that CCV and other colleges and universities nationwide are making. According to Tapp Barnhill, CCV's executive director of the Brattleboro academic center, the new facilities have one science lab and two computer labs that will be used for both CCV and Vermont Tech's STEM courses. The new labs, Barnhill said, will help CCV better meet the growing demand for lab science and computer courses.
Barnhill also said the College pays homage to Brattleboro's deep connection to and love for the arts in the form of a beautiful new studio art space at the center. The studio, she said, is one of the best rooms in the new center and is perfect for fostering and supporting the creative spirit that the Brattleboro region is known for.
The College's current Landmark Hill center will be closed August 6 through 8 while the move takes place. Courses scheduled during that time will be held at alternate locations. For more information on course locations, visit www.ccv.edu. Classes in the new academic center will begin with the start of fall semester courses on September 2, 2014.