TOWANDA, Pa. – Current students and local elected officials joined representatives from Lackawanna College on Thursday, Oct. 1 to officially celebrate the opening of its new Towanda Center at 1024 South Main Street in the borough.
Lackawanna first opened a center in Towanda in 1993. A September 2011 flood forced the College from its home in the Progress Plaza Building, and an agreement was struck with Keystone College for both institutions to create a joint educational facility at 602 Main Street. The new facility opened in August 2015.
Lackawanna College President Mark Volk lauded the determination and vision of Towanda Center Director Kim Mapes and her staff who advocated for a new campus-like setting in Bradford County.
Lackawanna College President Mark Volk, center, speaks with State Rep. Tina Pickett, left, and Bradford County Commissioner Ed Bustin about new opportunities for students in the Northern Tier as a direct result of the opening of the new Towanda Center.
“[That vision] is very reflective of Lackawanna College’s commitment to the area, to the city, to the county, and to the students and residents who are here,” Volk said.
The College will continue to partner with Keystone College to provide easy transfer opportunities to Lackawanna graduates who wish to earn their bachelor’s degree close to home, he added.
In her remarks, State Rep. Tina Pickett (R-Towanda)recognized the College’s historic role in training the next generation of workers.
“It came from the days when coal was king. There were administrators and fiscal managers who needed training, and Lackawanna was there,” Pickett said. “We went from there to the great emergence of women in the workplace during World War II. Women looked for training and education, and Lackawanna was there. Then they came to assimilating returning veterans back into good-paying jobs.”
With their expansion to a full campus in Scranton, along with centers in Hawley, Hazleton, New Milford, and “this incredible addition here in Towanda,” Pickett said.
“When you go through this building, you really feel that this is that college campus, that home for the vision that our residents can have for their future whether it be in Allied Health or the computer sciences or management,” added Bradford County Commissioner Ed Bustin.
The Center sits on 2.1 acres of land; provides 85 parking spaces for students and employees; and includes 12 classrooms, two computer labs, a student lounge and library, and several other additions that will meet all of the educational and social needs of Lackawanna’s students.
The new 10,100-square foot center offers needed space for growth for the College in Bradford County.