CAST cooperation should be model for future efforts
The new Center for Applied Science and Technology is a remarkable example of cooperation to take advantage of a great opportunity.
Cooperation, because it involves the McCook Public Schools, McCook Community College and its parent Mid-Plains Community College Area, Nebraska Department of Corrections Work Ethic Camp, Nebraska Work Force Development, Phoenix Transitional Services and Valmont Industries.
Opportunity, because industries like Valmont will have a long-term demand for skilled workers, and the school, college, state and Work Ethic Camp can supply those workers while meeting their goal of providing practical education and work skills.
"All the moons aligned just right" to make the partnership together, said Dr. Michael Chipps, MPCC president.
He is right; any one of the entities could have derailed the project with the short-sighted red tape for which too many public entities are known.
Instead, once the economic slowdown turns around -- as it will -- industries like Valmont needing welders and machinists will look to the CAST. Plus, there are potential opportunities in other trades as well.
The cooperation that resulted in the new training center is a model that should become, not a remarkable exception, but the norm.