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Opinion Letters SCC Macon Campus not fully utilized

After I was in the service, I attended a community college for two years before transferring to a four-year institution. Many years later I taught a few courses at Greenville Tech when they were in a bind for an instructor. So I have experiences both as a student and instructor at that level.

When I was a student at my local community college, classes were offered and filled every day and evening Monday through Friday. While I worked full time I was able to get most of the credits needed for an AA to transfer to a university in the evenings alone. This was a tremendous help to a young person trying to get better prepared for the responsibilities of life.

Greenville Tech prepares thousands of people for the surging auto industry throughout their area in addition to providing traditional courses toward various two-year degrees. (I taught nursing students there.)

In short, I support improvement in educational opportunity and quality at any level. An extensive, quality, two year college system is valuable to us all and the pay-back for responsible investments in such a system are tremendous.

Recently there have been at least two extensive articles in The Macon County News about the need to expand Southwestern's campus here in Franklin due to "increased enrollment." Maybe we need to look harder at "facility utilization." The campus is essentially closed every Friday, including the administrative offices, and appears to be completely closed on Saturday as well. There are few, if any, academic courses in the evenings. The overall use of the existing facility may be as low as 50 percent.

In government circles, building unnecessary facilities is often referred to as "empire building," for the aggrandizement of those involved in building and supervising the expansion. (Shucks, they might even have their names on a plaque on the building.)

These expansions often take place at the expense of necessary facilities and services. Pay attention Macon County residents, it is your money being spent on unnecessary expansion of Southwestern's Campus.

Tom and Janet Hill — Franklin, N.C.

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