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Marianas Variety: NMC to build 'resilient' new building (August 7, 2019)

A NEW and resilient building will soon rise on the typhoon-damaged campus of Northern Marianas College in As Terlaje, NMC Interim President Frankie Eliptico told the Rotary Club of Saipan on Tuesday.

He said NMC students and graduates will be proud of the proposed building’s modern design. It will have 40 classrooms, computer laboratories, specialty laboratories and faculty offices.

The building is estimated to cost between $15 million and $18 million.

In addition, NMC is proposing to build a student support center, which is estimated to cost $17 million; a workforce development center, $16 million; Cooperative Research Extension and Educational Services facility, $6 million; a gym, $6 million; parking structure, $5 million; and student housing, $15 million.

The student support center will house a bookstore, a career center, the cafeteria, disability support services, counseling services, student activities center, international students center, admission office, financial aid office, the Project Proa office, the library and the archives.

“We are not repairing old structures,” Eliptico said. “We’re not investing more resources into that old hospital building,” he added, referring to NMC.

To fund the construction of new facilities, he said NMC will apply for the alternative procedures program of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. This will allow NMC to use the repair assistance funding for the construction of new facilities, he added.

Because of the campus size, he said the proposed building will be more than one story. “We are building up to be able to maximize the space on campus. We are also taking advantage of previous plans that have been put together, and incorporating them into a new plan.”

Eliptico said the new facilities are designed to cater to the needs of the community 10 to 20 years from now.

Typhoon Yutu, which hit Saipan and Tinian in Oct. 2018, severely damaged 37 of NMC’s 39 classrooms as well as the computer laboratories, the cafeteria, the bookstore, the student center, the adult basic education building, the procurement building, CREES aquaculture, the CREES office and the gym.

Currently, NMC is holding classes in military tents.

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