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Blinn, Texas A&M University System announce March 31 groundbreaking ceremony for Blinn-RELLIS Campus

83,000-square-foot facility will open in time for the Fall 2018 semester

March 23, 2017

Exactly 10 months after accepting an invitation to join The Texas A&M University System at the RELLIS Campus, Blinn College will host a groundbreaking ceremony celebrating the construction of a facility that will serve approximately 2,500 students.

Blinn College will break ground on its new RELLIS Campus facility at 2 p.m. on Friday, March 31.

“The RELLIS Campus represents a landmark in the history of Texas higher education, bringing a renowned university system and a leading community college together for a partnership that has never been seen before in the State of Texas,” said David Sommer, President of the Blinn College Board of Trustees.

In May 2016, Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp announced plans to create a new research and development campus to help companies move ideas from the laboratory to the marketplace, while also offering a new path toward a college degree. As part of this vision, Blinn College will provide freshman and sophomore-level courses at RELLIS, creating seamless pathways for students to transfer to Texas A&M System institutions at the Gateway Education Center.

Blinn’s four-story building will span 83,000 square feet and include 18 classrooms and eight laboratories. Construction is scheduled to be completed in time for the Fall 2018 semester.

The site creates opportunities for Blinn to partner with other organizations and institutions located on the RELLIS Campus, including high-end, innovative, private research and development companies, the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES), and the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX).

“The RELLIS Campus demonstrates that collaboration and a commitment to student achievement can provide students with new hands-on learning opportunities while expanding access to affordable higher education,” said Dr. Mary Hensley, Blinn College District President/CEO. “It shows that together, we can create an unparalleled environment for personal growth, research, and discovery.”

In December 2016, Blinn and TEEX announced a Memorandum of Understanding outlining their partnership to meet Brazos County’s growing demand for workforce training programs. Per the agreement, TEEX and Blinn will work together to provide training for the targeted occupations identified specifically by the Workforce Solutions Brazos Valley Board and as confirmed by each institution’s market research related to training needs in the Brazos Valley. Other facilities on the RELLIS Campus will house these programs.

Blinn College and Texas A&M University have a proud history of developing innovative partnerships. Since 2001, the Texas A&M-Blinn TEAM (Transfer Enrollment at A&M) Program has served as the nation’s model for a collaborative, co-enrollment partnership between a major university and a community college. The TEAM Program has allowed thousands of additional qualified students to earn their degree from Texas A&M while enjoying the benefits of enrollment at both institutions, and in 2014 the program received the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board’s coveted Star Award as one of the top educational initiatives in Texas.

Texas A&M and Blinn built upon the TEAM Program’s success with the Texas A&M Engineering Academy at Blinn-Bryan and the Texas A&M Engineering Academy at Blinn-Brenham, offering students additional pathways to pursue an engineering degree from Texas A&M and helping to meet the nationwide demand for highly skilled engineering graduates.