A state grant awarded $1 million to Eastern Iowa Community Colleges to help pay for the construction of a career technical education campus in DeWitt.

The grant was given through the department of education and its new Career Academy Incentive Fund aimed to help prepare high school students for success in college, postsecondary training and the workforce.

Two additional $1 million grants were given to Indian Hills Community College in Indianola and Waterloo Community College.

EICC’s grant will be used to create a new regional center in DeWitt to serve students from Bellevue, Calamus-Wheatland, Clinton, Camanche, Central DeWitt, Easton Valley, Maquoketa, and Northeast.

“Through these partnerships, students often earn industry credentials and certificates that they can take directly into the workforce and be highly marketable, or have a solid foundation to succeed in further postsecondary education,” said Iowa Department of Education Director Ann Lebo.

The Career Academy Incentive Fund was established by a 2019 law that extends a statewide penny sales tax for school infrastructure, called Secure an Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE), through January 2051. At least $1 million will be awarded annually to support career academy partnerships among community colleges, school districts, business and industry, Regional Planning Partnerships, Area Education Agencies and others to increase student access to college programs, state-of-the-art equipment and career paths in Iowa’s in-demand fields.