Thelma Faye Harms Trust funds new employee training lab at Barton

September 6, 2017
Story and photo by Brandon Steinert

Funds from the Thelma Faye Harms Trust have made possible a lab dedicated to employee training and professional development at Barton Community College. It will also allow for third parties to host seminars through the Workforce Training and Community Education Division.

The need for such a lab became apparent when the college was scheduling four training sessions, each of which were three days long involving 30 employees. All the computer labs and classrooms that could accommodate the requirements of the training were taken by classes.

The project transformed room L-136 in the Learning Resource Center with 24 new computer stations, an instructor station, new chairs and a branded window tint to allow instructors to dim the lights.

Local attorney Mark Calcara is one of the individuals who helps determine which projects receive funding from the Harms Trust. He has been serving as a trustee for more than half a decade.

He said helping the college with its need to better train its staff and instructors was a good fit for the trust’s mission.

“We see the value and importance of education and the value and importance of the college,” he said. “This enhances the college, which educates our future leaders. It’s very much in line with the values and wishes of Mrs. Harms.”

Calcara said the trust has had a major impact on the community, funding many brick-and-mortar projects. At the college, Harms’ generosity can be found in the recently renovated auditorium, state-of-the-art gear for the nursing program and more.

An interior photo of the new employee training lab.
The new employee training lab at Barton Community College features 24 new computers. It will allow Barton to better facilitate training and professional development for faculty and staff, but it can also be used for seminars and continuing ed.