Local News

Wake Tech To Lead Training Program Against Bioterrorism Attacks

Posted February 21, 2003 2:26 a.m. EST

— The State Board of Community Colleges has approved an agreement for a Public Health Preparedness and Response for Bioterrorism grant of $200,000 from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

The money will fund a training program that will be developed and administered at Wake Technical Community College and will serve all of North Carolina's community colleges.

The events of Sept. 11, 2001, led Wake Tech to first initiate and develop new approaches to counterterrorism training.

Because of its previous experience, Wake Tech was chosen to be the lead college to identify, develop, produce and disseminate courses that target counterterrorism issues for the entire North Carolina Community College System.

Chuck Barham, NCCCS associate vice president for economic and workforce development, told the state board that Wake Tech was the logical choice.

"Wake Tech has a unique position in providing leadership and training in developing partnerships and to take the lead in developing courses." he said. "This is the strength they bring to the table."

Tommy Rhodes, Wake Tech executive vice president, said the program was a logical step for the NCCCS.

"We already provide 70 percent of the state's emergency training," Rhodes said.

Robert Ireland, Dean of Grants Development at Wake Tech, will administer the program.

"This new project follows what we have already been doing since 9-11," he said. "We have already conducted two surveys to determine the needs in this area."

Ireland said he expects high interest from other state agencies to receive training.

Approval of this program came at the State Board of Community Colleges meeting held Thursday at Surry Community College in Dobson.