Gov. Jay Nixon today attended a ground-breaking ceremony for the 138-acre Barton Farm Campus of North Central Missouri College (NCMC) in Trenton. Using $470,831 in Training for Tomorrow funds, in addition to other state funds and private gifts, NCMC will be able to expand its curriculum and facilities for agriculture and natural resources programs, and offer certificate and associate's degree programs in alternative agriculture and renewable energy.
"Missouri has always stood at the cutting edge of agricultural research and natural resources management," Gov. Nixon said. "The funds available through our Training for Tomorrow initiative will be put to excellent use by North Central Missouri College to prepare even more Missouri students to compete for the jobs of the future in sustainable agriculture, natural resources management and renewable energy."
The Barton Farm Campus is a gift from Elizabeth Barton and her son Arthur, former Trenton residents. It is located just outside the Trenton city limits, east of the main college campus on Highway 65.
The Barton family established a trust with the intent of giving the land to the college to create a second campus focusing on agriculture and natural resources. Students in the NCMC agriculture and natural resources program may pursue an associate of applied science degree in pursuit of a Bachelor of Technology degree, or an associate of arts degree in pursuit of a Bachelor of Science degree.
The first phase of campus development, expected to begin in late fall, will include conservation structures and a plant science building. Later, the college will build a greenhouse, an alternative fuels classroom, a 100-foot tall wind turbine, and an animal science building with livestock stalls and paddocks.
Total cost for the first two phases of the expansion is expected to be approximately $4.5 million, of which more than $3 million has already been raised or pledged. The expansion will allow the college to substantially increase its agriculture program enrollment from about 85 students to about 150 students.