Mansfield and Elk Lake create partnership

ALLAN GOLDEN

BY ROBERT L. BAKER

Along with the expansive new Susquehanna County Career and Technology Center building which debuted Saturday to the public, SCCTC director Alice Davis announced a new venture with Mansfield University.

She said that starting Monday the university would be offering college courses through interactive technology in Dimock, and, furthermore, SCCTC would begin having a presence on the Mansfield University campus.

She also mentioned that as many as nine college credits could be earned at SCCTC by the time of graduation from 12th grade that could be used towards an associate’s degree program at Mansfield.

(The Elk Lake School Board approved last Tuesday, Aug. 21, a competitively priced dual enrollment program that has other options with Mansfield.)

Although no one from Mansfield was on the Dimock campus Saturday, both Dennis Wydra of MU’s Marcellus Institute and the school’s president Allan Golden later spoke highly of not what was just in the new building but some tremendous possibilities for both campuses.

Golden said Monday that the Marcellus Institute was the impetus for an initial discussion last winter, but the schools discovered they had a lot more at stake and in common than the vast Marcellus shale that lay a mile beneath their feet.

Golden said Mansfield was interested in renewing its recruiting efforts in the Northern Tier of Pennsylvania, but when SCCTC’s Davis and Elk Lake Superintendent William Bush were in discussion at Mansfield, they made a discovery that Tioga County – where Mansfield is located – had no career technology center to support its three high schools.

So, Golden said that he hoped he wasn’t spilling the beans, but SCCTC had made a request of the Pennsylvania Department of Education to possibly service the vocational needs of Tioga County’s three high schools, and could potentially offer its own courses by interactive video or have its own teachers be on the Mansfield campus.

Golden said that instructional space would indeed be made available to SCCTC should the need ever arise.

About the new expansion of the career technology center in Dimock, Golden who visited the new building earlier in August, called it “first rate.”

“It’s incredible what they’ve been able to achieve with state-of-the-art equipment that you would want a classroom in 2012 to have.”

But, Golden said, what impressed him most “is the level of interest everyone affiliated with SCCTC has in trying to meet the needs and desires of today’s students for tomorrow’s world.”

He added, “It obviously makes it a lot easier for us to offer the kinds of things we want to when you have the faculty interest they have.”