New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez, BP America and San Juan College celebrated the announcement of BP Americas $4 million investment in the SJC School of Energy. Pictured above (left to right): Gayle Dean, SJC Foundation Executive Director; Tim Harrington, BP North America Gas Regional President; Dr. Toni Pendergrass, SJC President; NM Governor Susana Martinez; and Greg West, BP America Onshore Site Manager.
Thanks to a $4 million investment from BP America, San Juan Colleges School of Energy will soon expand with the capacity to serve both the local and national industry. BP officially announced their support at a reception held at San Juan College (SJC), on August 15.
BPs investment in the School of Energy is designed to help meet growing workforce development needs in the San Juan Basin and across onshore production businesses in North America.
The gift will go towards the development of a new building on the Farmington campus in a location yet to be determined, as well as state-of-the-art curriculum and training courses in disciplines ranging from natural gas to solar power.
“We are extremely grateful for BPs generosity and partnership in this endeavor,” said Dr. Toni Pendergrass, President of San Juan College. “With BPs support, the investment will bring new revenues to local businesses, while at the same time expanding the current tax base and revenues for the state of New Mexico.”
The School of Energy has already created one of the most successful technical education and training programs in North America. It graduates approximately 250 students per year in associate degree and certificate energy-focused programs, while training over 7,000 individuals per year in various industry curricula.
With their accredited Natural Gas Compression and Lease Operator program, students are able to receive an Associate Degree or certification. In addition to natural gas production, the School of Energy offers programs in commercial driving licensure (CDL), solar energy, and occupational safety.
BPs investment to build a new energy facility will enable the School of Energy to meet growing workforce training needs, expanding opportunities for students and employers alike.
“Our vision is to become a national leader in oil and gas field technical education, and BPs investment is helping make that a reality,” said Randy Pacheco, dean of the San Juan College School of Energy. “The energy producers and service companies in the San Juan Basin, along with companies like BP, have built programs at the School of Energy we can all be proud of.”
BP currently recruits employees from the School of Energy, as well as sends employees to the college for an eight-day “Jump Start Immersion Program.
“The School of Energy is leading BPs onshore workforce development program,” said Tim Harrington, BPs North America Gas Regional President. “The programs offered here at San Juan College will prepare our people well to ensure the safety of our people and the protection of the environment in natural gas development.”
In addition to the initial $4 million donation provided by BP, San Juan Colleges governing board has pledged $2 million toward the project. The San Juan College Foundation will initiate a capital campaign, and once the Foundation raises an additional $3 million, BP has pledged to match another $1 million.
“The San Juan College Foundation Board is excited to join BPs effort in furthering the training capacity of the School of Energy,” says Gayle Dean, SJC Foundation executive director. “Thanks to the longstanding partnership between BP and the School of Energy and a generous community, this joint endeavor will benefit the community and energy workforce in countless ways now and in the future.”
“New Mexico is a leader in energy production and this investment will provide an important boost to our states economy,” said Governor Susana Martinez. “With a talented workforce and a commitment to responsible development of our resources, New Mexico and San Juan County are a perfect home for BPs training efforts.”