Clare-Gladwin RESD was recently granted $100,000 from the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation of Midland to help fund the renovation of existing buildings at the John C. Magnus Center. When construction is complete, some of the career and technical education (CTE) programs offered to local high school juniors and seniors by the RESD’s Career Center will move to the Magnus Center.
Located at 3200 S. Clare Ave., the John C. Magnus Center was established in October 2013. Formerly home to Magnus Tractor Sales, the majority of the property’s nearly 25-acres was donated to the RESD in the spring of 2013 by John’s wife, Verna Magnus Green, and their children, Lt. Col. Mike Magnus, Darla Schmittner, and Michelle Maeder. The land contains multiple outbuildings, a barn, and a house.
With plans to eventually use the property to improve and expand learning opportunities for local youth through all of the organization’s student programs, the RESD is currently working with architectural and engineering firms to determine a master plan to be completed in phases as funding is secured. The first stage of the John C. Magnus project will focus on the Health Occupations and Construction Trades CTE classes.
“As Michigan is beginning to experience a resurgence in the trades, CGRESD is committed to providing an appropriate learning space for CTE students,” said Clare-Gladwin RESD Superintendent Sheryl Presler. “The space doesn’t have to be fancy, but it does have to be safe and functional for practical experiences using the latest technology, engineering and mathematics.”
During Phase 1, the salvageable portion of the main building will be renovated for the Construction Trades program, and the portion of the building that is beyond its useful life will be demolished. An addition of a learning lab and classroom will be created for the Health Occupations program.
After floor plans are confirmed and approved by the state, the hope is the Construction Trades students will learn and work alongside the hired contractors for the project. The goal is to have the Construction Trades learning area ready for students in August 2014 and the Health Occupations space complete by January 2015.
“A fully functional skilled trades training center has the potential to positively impact not only students, but families and communities for generations,” said Presler. “On behalf of CGRESD, its Board of Education, and all the high school students who will benefit from the Magnus Center, I would like to thank the Gerstacker Foundation for recognizing the importance of the Magnus Center project with such a generous grant.”
To learn more about Clare-Gladwin RESD, visit www.cgresd.net.