Collin College officially opened its new Technical Campus in Allen on Friday.
The event, which was attended by both Collin College, Allen ISD and city of Allen officials, celebrated the new four-building structure – they’re labeled A, B, C, and D – where students will receive on-hands training and learning in myriad technical and medical fields, and will also provide dual-credit courses to current Allen ISD students.
“I would have to say this is one of the more striking campuses we have built,” said J. Robert Collins, chairman of the Collin College Board of Trustees.
The campus is designed to serve more than 7,100 students at full capacity and will offer courses in HVAC, construction technology, computer networking, welding, plumbing and other technical fields. Upon completion, the students will be licensed and accredited in their areas of study.
“We just didn’t build it for today. We built it for tomorrow,” said Neil Matkin, Collin College’s district president.
Campus graduates, Matkin said, can use their acquired expertise locally in Allen, where, he said, there is demand for people with those skills.
The new campus, which was built in partnership with the Allen ISD, also will provide dual-credit courses in Building A for AISD students, allowing them to earn up to two years’ worth of college credit.
“Many of them will get an associate’s degree or come within a summer of it,” Matkin said.
By earning those credits, he noted, students also will not have to spend as long at a college campus, something that will save their parents and themselves quite a bit of money. The campus also will be partnering with the Allen ISD, plus those in Frisco, Plano and McKinney to provide career and technical education dual-credit opportunities without extra costs, according to a release from Collin College.
Besides providing on-hands technical training and college-level courses, Building A also will house medical-related classes in such areas as activity care professional, rehabilitation aide and pharmacy technician. The remaining three structures – Matkin said there’s room to build another – will be home to the numerous technical fields be offered.
Also, the campus has a 440-space underground parking garage, which can be used for classroom space, should the need arise, Matkin said.
Currently, between 1,600 and 1,700 students are enrolled at the campus, which are good numbers considering the current COVID-19 pandemic, Matkin said. At present, students are learning both online and in-person, he said. When doing the latter, they are required to follow proper social distancing rules, and college officials are making sure to sanitize all spaces, Matkin said.
“We worked hard to get the steps in place,” he said.