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Community College Unveils Largest Development Project Despite Accreditation Problems

Audio

Aired 5/25/10

The only community college in San Diego's South Bay has unveiled plans for the largest development project since the college was built 50-years ago. K-P-B-S producer Sarah Gonzalez tells us construction is underway despite the college's recent accreditation problems.

The only community college in San Diego's South Bay has unveiled plans for the largest development project since the college was built 50-years ago. Construction is underway despite the college's recent accreditation problems.

The $55-million project is planned for Southwest College's "corner lot." It will include a new bookstore, a culinary arts program, cafes and conference spaces with rooftop gardens.

South Bay voters approved the project two years ago, but the college's future is now uncertain.

The Western Association of Schools and Colleges placed Southwestern on probation in February. It says the school needs to improve in 10 areas or lose accreditation.

Raj Chopra is the superintendent and president of Southwestern College. He says the new development does not directly address any of the areas the school needs to fix, but that there's still time for that.

"We have in October and March the opportunity to correct those and we fully are committed to doing so," said Chopra.

Construction is expected to begin in June next year, before the college learns if it will lose its accreditation.

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