Community college opens in Des Moines mall

Des Moines, Iowa — The Des Moines Area Community College opened its school year with a new campus: a 65,000-sq.-ft. former J.C. Penney store located on the main level of Southridge Mall.

The mall’s owner, Macerich sold the space to DMACC for $1. The school, which has three other campuses in the Des Moines metro area, has invested $13 million in design, construction, equipment, labs and classrooms. Major donations will be announced this fall.

Construction started on December 26, 2012. Crews have worked seven days a week and in some cases 24 hours a day to build a state-of-the-art educational center.

Formally called the DMACC Center for Career and Professional Development, the facility will offer four academic, career and educational services. They are:

  • Warren County Career Academy provides college credit and vocational training to high school students.
  • DMACC Business Resources provides customized employee training, consulting and training programs to Central Iowa businesses.
  • DMACC Continuing Education offers non-credit classes for personal and professional development.
  • DMACC Success Center offers credit classes to students pursuing liberal arts and sciences degrees, as well as other educational services including programs for Youth-at-Risk, Adult Basic Education, English as a Second Language and General Education Development classes.

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