Khayat: Education center to open in 1999

By Monique Harrison

Daily Journal

The three-story, $9 million Advanced Education Center is set to open in the fall of 1999, school officials said Friday.

Bids are expected to be accepted on the building later this month, with construction set to begin several weeks later.

"I got the message after accepting this position in 1995," University of Mississippi Chancellor Robert Khayat told Tupelo Kiwanis members Friday. "The feeling was that we had not done what the people of Tupelo and surrounding areas expected us to do. They felt we had not made a commitment to the Tupelo Campus. I said then we were coming to town. And we've stuck by that."

The Advanced Education Center is a cooperative effort between Ole Miss, Itawamba Community College and Mississippi University for Women.

Although course offerings have not yet been finalized, a variety of programs are expected to be offered.

Programs will include computer integrated manufacturing and furniture manufacturing technology.

Several health programs are expected to be offered, including nursing programs.

A management information systems technology program will teach computer programming, networking, e-mail applications and advanced software applications.

A master's education program is expected to be offered to give area teachers the credentials needed to teach gifted students.

As plans for the new Advanced Education Center move forward, programs are also being added at the University of Mississippi's Tupelo campus.

One program that is expected to be particularly popular is engineering. A bachelor's level and graduate level class will be offered this spring, officials said Friday.

"We're expecting it to be a big draw," said Dr. Kathy Aycock, director of the University of Mississippi Tupelo Campus. "We're excited about it."

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