ATEP trains for careers in fields of science and business

Taylor Rogers

The Advanced Technology & Education Park campus is offering courses that prepare students for careers in the field of business, sciences and high tech, and career technical training. ATEP is also leading the transition to energy conservation.

The campus offers many courses through both Saddleback and Irvine Valley colleges and the Center for Applied Competitive Technologies in many subjects including optics, photonics, rapid prototyping, languages, information security, entrepreneurship and business. ATEP also offers general education courses.

“Our enrollment continues to grow and we are nearing capacity at our current facilities,” said Tere Fluegeman, director of public information and marketing at ATEP. “Current enrollment is around 1,350 and we are still enrolling for late-start classes. Last semester our enrollment was 1,250, and two years ago we opened with just 400 students.”

The one-acre campus, located at the corner of Red Hill and Valencia Avenue in Tustin, serves both of the colleges and offers specialty high-tech courses. The campus includes “smart” classrooms that offer connections to the Internet, as well as high-tech audio/video conference capabilities. They were designed to be convenient for students.

There is also a high-end Apple computer lab and what is called “support space” to students that include Student Services and Virtual Library, Digital (Wi-Fi) Café and gathering areas.

ATEP also supports energy conservation. Its buildings were built and placed to “maximize the light from the south while shading the buildings from southern solar heat gain,” according to the ATEP Web site.

“The campus was built with Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design initiatives in mind,” Fluegeman said.

“Some examples of our green initiatives include auto shutoff lighting; organic, recycled carpeting; strategically placed sunshades and a silver corrugated metal siding which is made up of 98% recycled materials.

We also recycle all of our trash and have met strict standards for water consumption and recycling.”

The whole campus is rigged so that energy is saved and students can be part of the conservation with little effort.

Most of the buildings were made with recycled materials and the construction materials had very little landfill contribution.

The campus has a very big goal in mind: not only to keep the environment safe, but also to offer students a gateway into the future of technology.

ATEP is working on plans to expand from a one-acre campus to 30 acres. The ATEP community was at the Saddleback College Ronald Regan Board of Trustees Room on Aug. 31 to discuss the expansion plans.

For more information, visit their Web site at www.atep.us.

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