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New Sulphur Springs campus officially announced

Published or Revised August 08, 2006

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Dr. Pamela Anglin, President of PJC, discusses the master plan drawing of the proposed PJC-Sulphur Springs Center campus with Sulphur Springs/Hopkins County EDC board member Tom Sellers.

Paris Junior College President Dr. Pamela Anglin officially announced plans Tuesday for the college to build a new campus in Sulphur Springs.

At a press conference held in the Hopkins County Chamber of Commerce building, Dr. Anglin said the college is anxious to move forward with its plans to build on land that the college recently purchased from the Sulphur Springs Economic Development Corporation.

The 46 acres of land is located on Highway 19 (West Loop 301) across from the Municipal Airport and next door to Copy Products Inc., formerly HON.

PJC is implementing a portion of its five-year strategic plan that was completed just last year that proposes building a new campus in Sulphur Springs to replace the existing campus located on West Houston Street.

With a student population of around 800 enrolled in daytime and night classes, the present facility, opened in 1996 with just over 200 students, doesn’t have the classroom and office space needed for the students, faculty and staff.

“We are in need of classroom space and facilities that will enable us to provide the best college education possible to a growing number of students,” said Dr. Anglin.

PJC Board of Regents President Paul Gene Roden told the group gathered at the announcement meeting that the college has watched the significant growth at the Sulphur Springs Center and looks forward to providing even greater educational opportunities for the area.

Tom Sellers, representing the Sulphur Springs/Hopkins County Economic Development Corporation, said PJC has been an important part of Sulphur Springs for many years.

“Even before the present Center, PJC was here and providing educational and technical training for people of the county,” Sellers said. “We have had a great experience with the college, and your (PJC) association with the school districts of the county provides our young people with good educational opportunities.”

Hopkins County Judge Cletus Millsap, an alumnus of PJC, said the greatest aspect of this announcement is having a prominent presence of higher education in the county.

“This is very important to our county, and we are excited for PJC and for Hopkins County,” he said.

Since the purchase of the land, the Board of Regents has authorized bonds in the amount of $7.5 million to be sold to Bank of America. This tax-exempt obligation financing will be used to begin the construction phase of the new campus facilities.

SHW Group of Dallas is developing master plans for campuses in Sulphur Springs, Paris and Greenville, and is designing the building for the campus in Sulphur Springs.

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