Molalla High School holds big reveal
About one year after Molalla High School received a generous donation amounting to more than $220,000 for its career-technical programming, the school swung open its doors for an open house to show off the updated wood and metals classrooms and shops.
The donation came from Molalla and Estacada alumni Terry and Cheryl Holden and Dale and Julie Burghardt.
The department also received donations of manufacturing equipment from Clackamas Community College last year.
All of these givers, and many more interested people, attended the open house on Monday, Oct. 7 to celebrate new equipment and tables, newly painted walls, updated classroom furniture and other items from the CTE teachers' now-granted wish list.
"What you see today is, I would say, still a work in progress," Principal Brad Berzinski said, "as it will always be, as it should always be."
The facilities though, like the CTE department itself, has come a long way. Superintendent Tony Mann pointed out that the work began seven years ago when the school board began restoring funding to the CTE department.
Now, with the dual donations, plus quality teachers in Craig Simmons and Mackenzie Behrle, the department is ready to thrive more than ever.
"I can't believe what I'm seeing here," said Mike Mattson, CCC's manufacturing department chair. "This takes me back in time. I think of myself as a 15/16-year-old boy coming to shop class and woodworking class, and I was one of the shop kids, and how it changed my life."
Molalla High School shop students Sebastian Stewart and Rusty Johnson attended the celebration. Both are interested in pursuing careers in welding. Johnson noted that prior to the donations, the school did not have quality welding equipment and now they do.
"I'm happy that there's people out there that do things like this," Johnson said.
Indeed, Behrle and Simmons suggested the donations are somewhat unprecedented, and the two could scarcely express their thanks to the Burghardts, Holdens and CCC.
But the donors considered it an honor to offer the gifts.
"Julie and I feel blessed that we're able to invest in the kids in Molalla, and we're happy to do it," Dale Burghardt said.
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