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Bridgemont Community and Technical College.

Bridgemont Community and Technical College was established in 1966 to offer associate-level, two-year degrees through West Virginia Institute of Technology. In 2009, the school's name was changed from the Community and Technical College at Wrest Virginia University Institute of Technology to Bridgemont Community and Technical College, but as the school's Web site notes, "As the college developed historically in association with the state's only institute of technology, Bridgemont continues to focus on technical programming."

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Among those technical programs is civil engineering technology, a two-year associate degree program that prepares graduates for employment in construction, water resources, public works, structural detailing and design, environmental studies, mining development and related fields. Completion of the program also qualifies graduates to enter either a plus-two bachelor of science program in civil engineering technology or engineering technology with an environmental emphasis. The program is accredited by the Technology Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology.

Also offered through the Bridgemont civil engineering technology program is an associate of applied science degree in highway engineering technology. The program is a collaborative effort between the West Virginia Department of Highways (WVDOH) and Bridgemont, and it is intended to develop skilled technicians to work in the highway and construction industries. It provides a career path for people employed by WVDOH with professional development opportunities as well as postsecondary education evaluated through the certification process. The degree program has two tracks: a two-year track for non-WVDOH employees and an ongoing certification track specifically for WVDOH. Technicians in the program may advance through a series of five levels based on their years of work experience and technical competency.

In the first year of the program, students take a technical orientation course, as well as courses in construction inspection, plans and specifications, technical mathematics, English composition, ethics and professionalism, basic computer applications, aggregate inspector/aggregate lab, and work zone traffic control. There is also a general education elective and a technical elective.

In the second year, courses include heavy construction methods, erosion and sediment control, risk management, construction surveying, business and professional writing, compaction inspection, and additional general education and technical electives.

The Bridgemont highway engineering technology program was honored by the League for Innovation in the Community College as one of its 2010 Innovation of the Year Award Winners in the category of workforce preparation and development. Melissa Thompson, assistant professor in civil engineering technology at Bridgemont, was recognized for her outstanding work as program coordinator for the highway engineering technology-degree program. The League noted that Thompson developed unique courses for on-time delivery, reviewed applications and evaluated student transcripts, conducted orientation sessions in WVDOH districts across the state, and efficiently advised and registered all students for the fall 2009 startup.

Bridgemont can be proud of this award-winning program that has been recognized not only for its quality and creativity, but also for its responsiveness in meeting the workforce training needs of West Virginia.

For more information about Bridgemont Community and Technical College and its-highway engineering technology program, visit www.bridgetnont.edu.
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Publication:Techniques
Geographic Code:1U5WV
Date:Oct 1, 2011
Words:506
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