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Georgia Southern Receives Funding for New Classroom Building, Degree Program

Governor Nathan Deal signs legislation at Georgia Southern

Gov. Nathan Deal signs HB 76, a part of the 2016 budget, on the steps of the Marvin Pittman Administration Building at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, Georgia, on May 11 as engineering students and University officials look on.

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal visited Georgia Southern University on Monday, May 11, to sign into law HB 76, an important part of the 2016 Fiscal Year Budget, on the steps of the Marvin Pittman Administration Building on Sweetheart Circle on the Georgia Southern campus.

Included in HB 76 is $33.6 million in funding for a new multidisciplinary classroom building, and $1 million in funding for the University’s operating budget that will help build a world-class manufacturing engineering program.

“We call on higher education, both in our college and university system and in our technical college system, to help us prepare the workforce of today and certainly the workforce of tomorrow,” said Deal. “For those institutions of higher learning, we continue to provide financial support.”

The multidisciplinary classroom building, Deal said, will provide much-needed space for classes essential to high demand careers such as software developers, computer programmers, business support roles, mechanical and electrical engineering and advanced manufacturing.

“These are investments in the education community that we think will pay dividends for our state in the years to come,” he added.

The $1 million will fund the advanced manufacturing degree program and the hiring of world-class faculty to educate the future students in the program.

“In Georgia, manufacturing jobs account for about 350,000 Georgians,” Deal said. “And with the establishment of this program at Georgia Southern, I am told it will be the only program in the Southeast that is dedicated to that manufacturing degree arena and I think it is certainly a welcome one.”

University President Brooks A. Keel, Ph.D., thanked Deal for the state’s support of Georgia Southern and the mission to educate and train the future workforce and leaders of Georgia and beyond.

“Governor Deal’s support of Georgia Southern has been nothing short of strong, steadfast and True Blue,” said Keel. “The signing of House Bill 76 on our campus today is indeed a historic moment and a great honor for us. It serves as a reminder that, to whom much is given, much is expected and Governor Deal, we promise to be good stewards of the trust you have placed in us.”

This is the third time Deal has signed legislation on campus. Previous signings included funding for a new military science building and legislation to create the Herty Advanced Materials Development Center at Georgia Southern. Deal has also offered his support of funding for the new Biological Sciences Building, funding for a new Health Center and much more.

State Sen. Jack Hill, R-Reidsville, was on hand for the occasion, and local dignitaries including Bulloch County Commissioner Garrett Nevil, chairman of the Bulloch County Board of Commissioners; Bulloch County Commissioner Walter Gibson; Statesboro Mayor Jan Moore; and Roy Kilpatrick, commissioner for the Georgia Student Finance Commission, were also in attendance. Other area representatives of the House were unable to attend due to a caucus meeting in Atlanta, but Keel offered a thanks for their support of the University as well.

Georgia Southern University, a Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers 125 degree programs serving more than 20,500 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement.  Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered approach to education. Visit: www.georgiasouthern.edu.

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