EMERGE Career and Technology Center Grand Opening Success


Over 400 people celebrated the Grand Opening of the EMERGE Career and Technology Center (ECTC) on Thursday, January 22nd. Hands-on demonstrations in EMERGE training rooms were popular, and it was standing-room only for the 5 pm program. 

The ECTC is critical to EMERGE’s mission of helping people maximize their potential and launch careers. In addition to housing Leadership and Development teams, these are the activities and teams that will be housed in the ECTC:

  • Computer literacy training will help close the ‘digital divide’ between people who are computer literate and those who are not. An open access computer lab on the lower level will allow community members to practice skills, search jobs online, create resumes, and otherwise use computers, particularly for purposes of seeking employment.
  • Industry-specific workforce training will be delivered in training labs on the lower level, which will house EMERGE’s training department. 
  • EMERGE’s youth programs, focused on education and employment, will be housed on the upper floor. EMERGE is committed to providing quality, paid work experiences to youth who would otherwise not have employment opportunities.

Designed to be a clearing house of partnerships, three key, initial partners will be onsite:

  • Hennepin Technical College (HTC) will base an auxiliary campus in the center, with a manufacturing assessment lab in one of the three training rooms on the lower level.
  • Minnesota Computers for the Schools will staff a new satellite site in the ECTC providing a variety of IT-related trainings for youth and adults.
  • Northside Economic Opportunity Network (NEON) will provide entrepreneurial workshops and trainings.

A highlight of the evening was closing speech by Lydia Johnson, former EMERGE participant. Said Lydia, “Education and jobs can break the cycle. When one person makes it, other people start to believe. This is how we change whole communities. I am personally very excited for the opening of the EMERGE Career and Technology Center. This new building will allow more people and the Northside community to have the opportunity to redefine themselves like I did.” 

While still putting the finishing touches on the building, EMERGE expects the new building to be open to the public in February.