On June 15, 2020, Lincoln County dignitaries and state representatives, along with Gov. Mike Parson, broke ground on the Lincoln County Workforce Development Center.
Seventeen months, weather delays and a pandemic later, many of those same dignitaries returned to the site on John Deere Drive, in between Troy and Moscow Mills, to cut the ribbon on the new Ranken Technical College facility on Nov. 9.
The facility is expected to open to students in January.
Parson said the new 23,000-square-foot building epitomizes his focus on workforce development.
“Workforce development is not about me anymore. It’s about the development of our state,” he said. “It’s not just about the future of the state, but the future of our country, to give the young men and women the opportunity to learn what the workforce of tomorrow is.”
In addition to Parson, District 41 Representative Randy Pietzman was on hand for the event, along with Moscow Mills Mayor Patrick Flannigan, Troy Mayor Ron Sconce, former Winfield mayor and District 41 candidate Ryan Ruckel, Lincoln County Prosecuting Attorney Michael Wood, the Lincoln County Commission, Boonslick Regional Planning and the Troy Area Chamber of Commerce, among others.
Julie Rodgers, Lincoln County Economic Development director, said the project took years of development and planning to come to fruition. She also thanked the local business community for its support, and the creation of an endowment, which is currently $334,000.
“If you guys weren’t here, we wouldn’t have jobs for students to be moving to after graduation,” she said.
Wes Woods was one of the business leaders at the ribbon-cutting. The president of Toyota Motor Manufacturing Missouri said as the company celebrates its 30th year in Lincoln County, the opening of the Lincoln County Workforce Development Center is coming at the perfect time.
“This partnership comes at the right time for Toyota of Missouri,” he said. “This partnership comes at the right time for the students of Lincoln County.”