Thanks to state funding, the Cottrell Center for Business, Technology and Innovation on the University of North Georgia's Dahlonega campus is a little closer to completion.
The state budget signed this week by Governor Brian Kemp includes $3.2 million in funding for equipment for the new building, plus a $10 million gift from Mike Cottrell, the college's namesake benefactor, and his wife Lynn. That money, along with $21.8 million in state funds for design and construction, funded the construction and furnishing of the building.
Mary Gowan, the dean of the Cottrell College of Business, said the college will provide an opportunity for all of the faculty to be together in one place, rather than spread across three buildings.
"That's going to help with building community in the college," Gowan said. "Also, we're going to have actual spaces for students and faculty, or students and students, or faculty and faculty to gather and work on projects together."
The new 86,483 square-foot building, scheduled to open in fall 2022, will serve as the hub for business and computer science programs with specialized labs, student engagement spaces and high technology classrooms.
Gowan said it will rival the best business colleges in the state.
"What we've done is made our spaces multi-functional," Gowan said. "Many schools will have set aside spaces for just one purpose, but we realized that we have what sounds like a lot of space, but when you start putting computer science, cybersecurity and all the business programs into one building, it's really not."
The latest allocation begins the third and final phase of state funding for the project.