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Aug 19, 2008

Teaching Center Opens This Week

August 19,2008, The Sheridan Press, By Kristen Salamon, Staff Reporter - Sheridan city councilors Monday morning announced the opening of a local Eleutian Technology teaching center and met with a representative of Cheyenne LEADS to hear about potential business park development in the city. "This is really exciting," said Forward Sheridan Inc. President and CEO Philippe Chino of the teaching center. "It is a great example of Forward Sheridan, ACT [Advanced Communications Technology] and Sheridan College working together to make this happen." Eleutian Technology is an education and technology company that teaches conversational English to its customers in Korea, Japan and China.

The new teaching center, located at 60 W. Seymour St., is set to open this week. According to Chino, 16 workers are now being hired. By the end of 2008, 50 teachers are expected to be employed, and the facility plans to hire 200 teachers by the end of 2009. "The company looked here because we have the work force numbers," Chino said. "This is the kind of company we want to bring in here. One that starts slowly but is sure to grow." According to a study done for Forward Sheridan by The Wadley- Donovan Group in May 2007, Sheridan County has 5,350 residents interested in working who are currently not employed. There are 3,375 residents who feel they are underemployed. "One of the key assets of Sheridan is that we have a hidden labor supply," said Sheridan Mayor Dave Kinskey.

The announcement of the new teaching center fit into Cheyenne LEADS CEO Randy Bruns' presentation to the council. Cheyenne LEADS has brought companies to Cheyenne's North Range Business Park and Cheyenne Business Parkway. "If we can help statewide, I think it is our obligation to do so," Bruns said. According to Bruns, as of 2006, 14 companies and 2,275 jobs were added to Cheyenne within its two business parks. This increase in jobs and new companies also meant the addition of an annual payroll of more than $58 million, he stated. "That is $58 million that was added to the local economy," Bruns said. While Sheridan's goals and scope would be on a smaller scale than Cheyenne's, council members agreed that Cheyenne has been a model for business park development. "It is impressive - the potential that can come from developing a variety of industries and their resulting spinoff jobs," Councilman Bob Webster said. Kinskey, Chino and Bruns reassured the council and public that any potential business parks would not compete with the private sector. "It is important for people to understand that business parks are not just private parks; most are created through public and private cooperation," Chino said.