Northern has initiated the search for an architectural firm to guide the planned transformational renovation of the Jacobetti Complex into a Career Tech and Engineering Technology Facility. The $28.6 million project was included in the supplemental appropriations bill signed by former Gov. Rick Snyder in December. It calls for the modernization of existing classrooms, a new educational manufacturing design center and flexible laboratories for skilled trades learning and product/equipment testing and training.
“Northern’s approach to this project will be similar to that used for Jamrich Hall,” said Gavin Leach, vice president for Finance and Administration. “We will be evaluating everything about the renovation to ensure it’s the most efficient and effective use of space and to utilize the resources allocated for the project in the best way possible. That includes a review of existing programs and exploring opportunities for new programs that will enhance job creation, talent development and economic growth. This will be a major, positive change on campus. We’re excited to begin updating the facility changing the learning environment and making it adaptive to changing technologies.”
The Career Tech and Engineering Technology Facility will provide NMU students and area professionals with cutting-edge training tools and technology. It aligns with the State of Michigan’s goal to increase career-technical education to prepare a skilled workforce to meet growing industry demand.
Leach said he anticipates the university will receive an construction authorization within a year, after the planning process is completed. NMU’s project was one of 10 on the list of community college and university projects selected for funding by the Joint Capital Outlay Subcommittee.