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Ribbon cut on new Lackawanna College facility in Wyoming County

Newswatch 16's Courtney Harrison shows us how the bigger facility will prepare Lackawanna College students for their future.

TUNKHANNOCK, Pa. — The natural gas industry has been training students in our area for the past decade, and a new facility is ready to welcome new students for the upcoming semester.

Back in October, Lackawanna College announced it would be moving its School of Petroleum and Natural Gas Drilling from Susquehanna County after 10 years because the interest in the program grew, and they simply didn't have enough space.

After months of construction, the ribbon was cut Thursday on the new Tunkhannock Center facility in Wyoming County, where students will receive hands-on training to prepare for the petroleum and natural gas industry.

"To help people obtain their goals, to find employment in the area, to be able to raise a family and stay in the area with all the great-paying jobs and with the industry's help, we do make people's dreams come true," said program director Sue Gumble.

"It was a great precursor before the internship actually started, and we learned a lot, and we covered a lot of the basics, and especially with a compressor lab, phenomenal program, very hands-on," said Lackawanna College student Thomas Evans.

The new facility is nearly twice the size, with new equipment that will prepare the students for real-life experiences working in the industry.

"That's what is important for our type of degree is the hands-on experience, so when they graduate, and they go out, or even before that, when they go on their internship between the first and second year, that they know what they're doing," Gumble said.

This expanded facility will also allow people in the Wyoming County area to pursue a degree or a certificate in something else besides petroleum or natural gas drilling.

"We needed just a bigger area to house the petroleum, natural gas, and the whole idea was to make this a full-blown center just like our other centers, so offer the traditional degrees—business, criminal justice, some professional studies, and more," said Kayla Guilford, director of the Lackawanna College Tunkhannock Center.

Classes for the first group of students to learn at the Lackawanna College Tunkhannock Center begin on August 30.

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