BY AMANDA ALLER
PHOTO CREDIT: AMANDA ALLER
The halls of DeMare Hall may seem a little quieter as of late as the musicians and thespians have been moved out of cramped classrooms in the County College of Morris’ main academic building to their new home in the soon-to-be dedicated Edward J. Yaw Music Technology Center.
“I’m honored, and this is meaningful to me in a lot of different ways,” said Edward Yaw, CCM president. “It’s meaningful because we’ve wanted to add this to the campus for many years… and my father was also a musician in upstate New York, so this has special meaning to me.”
Yaw said the new name will not take effect until the dedication ceremony on April 21, and until after the Board of Trustees approves it that week.
The CCM Board of Trustees broke ground on the new $8.5 million building in Sept. 2014.
“Since 2007, enrollment in our music technology programs has grown 36 percent,” said Edward Yaw, CCM President. “This new facility not only will address that growth but allow CCM to build upon the strengths of its music and performing arts programs. We are grateful to the residents of New Jersey and county officials for making this possible.”
Since 2014, the Building Our Future Bond Act has provided $750 million for New Jersey’s colleges. Of that, $200 million is going towards community colleges for much-needed construction and renovation projects.
CCM received a total of $10 million to construct the Music Technology Building along with upgrading its engineering labs. The Music Technology Center has since become a multi-purpose building used to house the college’s popular and growing music technology and other performing arts programs.
“The Music Technology Center is awesome and we’re getting modern technology shipped from other countries, which are specially made for our new building” said Ashley May, a student at CCM.
All of the funding for the facility is coming from the Building Our Future Bond Act that was approved by New Jersey voters in 2012.
Governor Chris Christie said that passage of the bond act would increase jobs as well as boost the state’s economy in terms of construction, teaching and maintaining the facilities.
“The Music Technology Building will be one of 176 projects that are underway at 46 of our college’s and universities throughout the state, and it’s important not only for the future jobs it will create but also for the men and women who work in the building trades across the state,” said Christie.
The Music Technology Center has been constructed as a 22,500-square-foot, two-story addition to the college’s Student Community Center. Academic programs to be housed in the new facility include Digital Media Technology, Drama, Media Technology, Music and Music Recording.
The facility includes an experimental theater lab that will serve as a large hands-on classroom with a recording studio and seating for 100-125 people, two standard classrooms, an electronic music/aural comprehension classroom, a piano lab, a second recording studio, scene shop, dressing rooms and multiple student practice rooms.
“You always dream about having nice facilities to work and teach in, but here the dream came true,” said Todd Collins, a music professor at CCM.