LYNCHBURG, TN (Dec. 20, 2019) – Motlow State celebrated the opening of an impressive new building on the Smyrna campus recently by welcoming business and industry leaders, elected officials, education leaders, Motlow College Foundation trustees and donors, Motlow faculty and staff, and others at a grand opening held inside the new facility.
The $28 million, 82,000 square-foot, three-story Building 3 provides 32 classrooms equipped with the latest technology, seven labs, over 50 faculty and staff offices, the campus library and bookstore, a one-stop center for student services such as admissions and financial aid, student lounges, and a multi-purpose area capable of seating up to 300.
“Smyrna 3 positions Motlow State and Rutherford County to fuel the economic engine in Tennessee by producing well-educated, competent, and prepared graduates that do two things,” said Dr. Michael Torrence, Motlow president, in his opening remarks. “They transfer (to a four-year institution) or they go to work. But there is a third: they can also become entrepreneurs. We are happy to be a catalyst that will help attract robust businesses and industries into Rutherford County and beyond, thus contributing to greater human capital.”
Several speakers gave congratulatory remarks and recognition to individuals and entities key to the project, with consensus that the building is the result of collective partnerships and collaboration between the public and private sectors.
“When I look around this facility, two words come to my mind - partnerships and opportunities,” said Robert Stevens, Rutherford County commissioner, and Motlow College Foundation trustee. “Partnerships were so critical to construct this state-of-the-art facility. Without the financial collaboration of all our stakeholders, this structure would not have been possible; and the opportunities for self-improvement here are endless. Helping people to reach their full potential and be more productive citizens is a very worthwhile effort and I am so glad that Rutherford County was a part of that.”
In her remarks, Smyrna Mayor Mary Esther Reed shared how important Motlow is to the community in the recruiting of business and industry. “To be able to say that Motlow is right here and what a great opportunity it represents is a real benefit to the town,” said Reed.
Key supporters of the project are the town of Smyrna, as well as the Rutherford County Commission and the Industrial Development Board, both of which have made multi-year funding pledges. Additional contributors include the city of LaVergne, the John D. Floyd Foundation, The Clayton Family Foundation, Motlow College Foundation, Middle Tennessee Electric Corporation, and countless businesses and individuals from the Rutherford County area and surrounding communities.
The building was designed by TMPartners, PLLC, and built by Messer Construction. In his comments, Thomas Lampe, vice president and general manager, Nashville region, Messer Construction, shared how Messer is not only proud of the finished product, but more importantly, how proud they are of their partnership with Motlow.
“We had the opportunity to work with a great owner (Motlow),” said Lampe. “Brian Gafford, director of facilities, and Hilda Tunstill, vice president, were tremendous individuals to work with, bringing common-sense solutions for problem-solving as we faced and addressed the issues that arise in a construction project. We feel we have a shared vision (with Motlow),” Lampe added. “Our purpose at Messer is to build better lives for our customers, communities and each other. We are energized by what this building means to the lives of the people who enter the workforce, and we are excited to be a part of this project.”
The new building is yet another milestone for Motlow, one of the fastest-growing colleges in the nation that has seen double-digit percentage increases in Smyrna enrollment since 2015. The project triples classroom space and parking space on the campus.
Naming opportunities for this new facility are available, and donations can be earmarked through the Motlow College Foundation. Contact Lane Yoder at 931-393-1692 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.