UNK– The official groundbreaking ceremony for the College of Education building on the University of Nebraska at Kearney campus will be held on September 19 at 2:30 p.m. The festivities will take place at the new building site, just west of the Health and Sports Center on Hwy. 30.

Scheduled distinguished guests include Governor Mike Johanns, President L. Dennis Smith, members of the State Legislature, University of Nebraska Regents and Mayor Pete Kotsiopulos. Chancellor Gladys Styles Johnston said, “For the first time in the history of UNK, a named facility recognizes the original role and mission of our university: the preparation of educators. We anticipate with unbridled enthusiasm the construction and completion of this state-of-the-art facility.”

The College of Education building is scheduled for completion in the summer of 2002. The $.9.5 million building will have state–of-the-art technology with 50,000 square feet and will house faculty in the departments of Counseling and School Psychology, Communications Disorders, Educational Administration, Elementary Education, Professional Teacher Education and Special Education. The building will include about 50 offices, eight classrooms, two 24-hour computer labs and a speech and hearing clinic.

UNK has its roots in teacher education and professional educational programs. Founded in 1905 as the Nebraska State Normal School at Kearney, the Normal School became Nebraska State Teachers College in 1921 and then Kearney State College in 1963. Through action of the Nebraska State Legislature, Kearney State College became the University of Nebraska at Kearney on July 1, 1991.