Posted: April 13, 2001

Contact: Doug Anderson,, 651-201-1426

Minnesota State Colleges and Universities cleared the way for construction of a new facility to provide high school students with career training programs on the Anoka-Hennepin Technical College campus.

This week MnSCU transferred land to Anoka County so that construction can begin this fall on a three-story building that will be leased by the Anoka-Hennepin School District. The 54,000 square foot facility will be home to a new Secondary Technical Education Program for 11th and 12th grade students who choose to enroll. The Anoka County Board of Commissioners is funding the STEP facility through $10 million in bonds issued in March.

"This new facility and this educational partnership will be a great asset to the area," said Anne Weyandt, Anoka-Hennepin Technical College president. "Students will be able to explore technical careers in a well-equipped facility with guidance from industry-experienced instructors."

The new building will be used primarily for general education classes for students enrolled in technical programs. Programs include advanced automotive, aviation careers, computer-aided electronics, computer networking, emergency medical, hotel/restaurant/bakery careers, machine trades, media technology and welding. Most hands-on technical courses will be taught in labs and shops in the existing Anoka-Hennepin Technical College building. High school students will, in some cases, be able to receive college credit for technical education.

The creation of the new facility was authorized by the Minnesota Legislature along with $12.5 million in capital bonding needed to make essential improvements to the existing college building. Major repairs to replace the roof, repair the heating and cooling system, correct building code deficiencies and demolish obsolete space will begin this spring.

"This community is united in its support for technical education," said MnSCU Chancellor Morris Anderson. "The synergy between the school district and Anoka-Hennepin Technical College will make this a solid multi-purpose campus."