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OTC awarded $1.7 million for workforce programs in Christian County

Ozarks Technical Community College students work in an agriculture-industry training course in this undated photo.
Kristina Bridges / Courtesy OTC
Ozarks Technical Community College students work in an agriculture-industry training course in this undated photo.

The Biden administration says the grant will support agriculture and lineworker training.

Commerce Secretary and former Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo announced this week that $1.7 million in federal money will go toward a new classroom facility off Highway 14 at the Richwood Valley campus of Ozarks Technical Community College.

Raimondo called it part of President Biden’s agenda for “Investing in America.” The federal funding will be matched with $3.1 million in local money.

"We’re calling this our ag-tricity building because it is going to house our agriculture and electrical distribution systems programs," says Mark Miller, an OTC spokesperson.

The Richwood Valley campus of Ozarks Technical Community College is located off Highway 14 in Christian County, Missouri.
Kristina Bridges / Courtesy OTC
The Richwood Valley campus of Ozarks Technical Community College is located off Highway 14 in Christian County, Missouri.

Miller says OTC students are already flocking to these programs. The agriculture program moved to Richwood Valley in 2019; by 2022, its count of students had already doubled.

“This 15,000-square-foot building will allow us to add four new classrooms, because even after just a few years, they are both busting at the seams," Miller says.

In a Commerce Department news release, Missouri Gov. Mike Parson hailed the project as one that will help “more Missourians earn a skill and secure a good-paying, high-demand job.”

Gregory Holman is a KSMU reporter and editor focusing on public affairs.