COA, Dare eye one campus

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College of The Albemarle and Dare County have started formal talks to consolidate the main Dare County campus of COA, shown here in Manteo Wednesday, with its satellite campus on Russell Twiford Road in Manteo.


By William F. West
Staff Writer

Sunday, December 25, 2016

College of The Albemarle and Dare County have agreed to enter formal talks on finding a site for a unified campus for the college in Dare, COA’s president said last week.

Making what was likely her last presentation as COA president, Kandi Deitemeyer told the college’s trustees that COA and Dare have “agreed that we would move in the direction” of having one campus. Currently, COA operates two campuses in Dare that are roughly a mile apart.

Deitemeyer, who is leaving COA at the end of the month for the president’s job at Central Piedmont Community College, cautioned trustees that centralizing the Dare campus at one site is still probably a couple of years away. Nonetheless, she said she had spoken with both COA staff and Dare County officials about developing a timeline for the project early next year.

There would be a lot of advantages to having the college at just one site, she said.

"I think there'll be lots of efficiencies. I think it'll be good for students. I think you'll have more modern facilities," she said.

COA has operated its continuing education and workforce development programs in the former Manteo Middle School since 2008. Built in 1958, the building is located on U.S. 64 near downtown Manteo. Currently, COA leases the renovated former school from Dare County.

COA's other Dare campus, which is used for professional arts courses, is located in a complex off Russell Twiford Road, also in Manteo. The complex actually has two parts: the original building, a former skating rink constructed in 1981 and expanded in 1989; and a second building that was added in 2000. COA owns the entire site.

Deitemeyer said COA’s conversations with Dare officials thus far have focused on streamlining the college’s footprint, finding the best site for one campus and what the impact would be for having a single campus.

COA Chief Operations Officer Joe Turner said in an email last week that there are no specific plans for what a single campus would look like or where one would be located. The college also has no estimates for what land for a new site would cost or what any buildings on that site would cost, he said.