The Temple College Health Sciences Center opened in 2004 and is about to undergo a renovation and...The Temple College Health Sciences Center opened in 2004 and is about to undergo a renovation and expansion.Temple College has received a $2.4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce that will go toward the cost of renovating its Health Sciences Center.

Funding for the grant is coming from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which provided the Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration with $1.5 billion for economic assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus.

The Temple College grant was one of three CARES Act Recovery Assistance grants to institutions in Texas that were formally announced July 8. The three grants totaled $7.7 million.

Brandon Bozon, vice president for administrative services and chief financial officer at Temple College, said the grant will fund more than half the upcoming renovations planned for the Health Sciences Center. The grant-funded renovations include faculty offices, work rooms, locker rooms for faculty and staff, “smart” conference rooms, and purchasing updated equipment for the dental hygiene clinic.

The remainder of the renovations, as well as a two-story addition to the Health Sciences Center, will be paid for out of the $124.9 million bond issue that Temple voters approved in May.

Temple College President Dr. Christy Ponce said the college applied for the grant in 2020 when it learned that coronavirus relief funds were available for construction projects designed to help address the shortage of health care workers.

“Maintaining state-of-the-art facilities and equipment is critical to helping us prepare the next generation of health care professionals and addressing the shortage of health care workers,” Dr. Ponce said.

Congressman John Carter, whose district includes Temple College, said he was glad to see CARES Act funding return home to bolster the health care workforce in Central Texas.

“Congratulations to Temple College for earning this grant that will certainly have a positive impact on Central Texas,” Rep. Carter said.