A project that was two years in the making has come full circle for Central Alberta Christian High School (CACHS).
On Monday, dignitaries from the school and the community cut the ribbon to a $1.2 million Industrial Arts Facility which will give students at CACHS plenty of options through their high school journeys.
“It is very exciting. It has been something that is a long-time coming. It was always on our wish list and in the last few years — there was a renewed desire to get it done,” CACHS Principal Pete Hoekstra said, adding the community response at the ribbon-cutting was amazing.
“That is the type of community we have — very supportive and enthusiastic and visionary.”
The facility allows the school to offer courses in wood shop, auto-mechanics and welding, which Hoekstra said rounds out what the school is able to offer academically.
“A lot of kids, whether they are academic or not, want and and need a way they can show their physical learning. They can create something and whether they are trades oriented or not — it gives them a chance to do something that has an end product,” he said.
The development of this facility began over two years ago when the school started a committee to come up with a vision for what they wanted. They then worked closely with community donors and Eagle Builders to have the vision come to fruition.
“It was an exceptionally smooth project. The strength of the vision and the fact it is owned by the community shows the level of support we have had for it. It is a $1.2 million expansion and we raised close to $1 million for it,” Hoekstra said.
So far, the student response to the facility has been positive.
“They don’t come up and put it in words, but when you watch them in the shop you can tell it is doing what it was intended for,” he said. “The looks on their faces and their attitude towards getting in there and getting their hands dirty has been very positive.”
With the completion, CACHS is now working towards their next project but nothing has been decided or set in stone.
“There are some ideas being thrown around for sure,” Hoekstra said, adding it is his privilege to be a part of CACHS for over 27 years.
“The vision is being passed on through generations and it continues to resonate with the people who choose to send their kids here,” he said.