Butte College unveils new training site

OROVILLE — Butte College unveiled its brand new Scenario Village with a ribbon cutting ceremony, refreshments and speeches from staff Wednesday.

The facility, which was built to train law enforcement, firefighters, fish and wildlife and parks and recreation recruits, houses five modular buildings, a restroom building and shade structure. The village is a dedicated instructional area to perform required scenario testing.  The project itself is part of the $190 million Measure J Bond Project and was built on time and within budget.

Redding, Anderson and Chico police attended the event, as well as deputies from the Yuba County, Sutter County and Shasta County sheriff’s offices; State Parks; Department of Fish and Wildlife; Butte County Code Enforcement and the Butte College Police Department; along with Butte College staff, students and community members.

Several speakers addressed the crowd prior to the ribbon cutting.

“What a wonderful day,” Butte College President Samia Yaqub said. “I’m pleased to be here on such a special occasion.”

Don Beasley, the director of Public Safety and Education Training Center, also gave a speech. “It was a huge process to get here today,” he said. “We anticipate that the buildings will be beneficial for years to come.”

Yaqub was very pleased to witness the opening of the facility.

“This has been a long time coming,” Yaqub said after the ribbon cutting. “We envisioned something like this a decade ago. Other projects started right away.”

Measure J also funded the remodel of the Butte College Technology Center building and the Diesel Lab at the college’s Skyway center. The Welding and Manufacturing facility is a new building along with the new Athletics and Kinesiology building, both also funded by Measure J.

Yaqub said Scenario Village is the only place in California that provides this type of training grounds.

“It’s a place dedicated to real-life scenarios and it’s very important,” she said.

Scenario Village houses spaces for grocery store or apartments, for example, so recruits can experience different emergency scenarios.

Andrew Page attended the event. Page is a new recruit for Shasta County Sheriff’s Office and a Butte College student. He is slated to graduate in three weeks.

“I think it’s great,” Page said about the opening. “I’ve enjoyed everything here at Butte. The academic staff, law enforcement, everyone has been fantastic.”

Beasley was very excited about the opening as well.

“This is a wonderful accomplishment for the college. It’s been a long time coming. It opens up so many doors for training,” Beasley said.

The village won’t hold training for a little while yet. The interior walls for some of the buildings are not quite constructed yet.

“We want it open as quickly as we can,” Beasley said. “I’m very, very thankful to have the project completed.”

Dominic Sanfilippo is the Fire Academy co-coordinator. “Congratulations to the college. It’s a step in the right direction for public safety,” he said.

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