Company using former college campus to bring new growth to Mayfield

GRAVES COUNTY, KY- For a few years now you might’ve wondered: what’s happening with the former Mid-Continent University campus in Graves County?

There are signs of new life and the promise of a bright future for people in west Kentucky.

The property’s new owner started moving into a few buildings Wednesday. West Kentucky and Tennessee Telecommunications is a voice, video, broadband, and security provider. The company’s goal is to attract other companies to our region and help small start-up businesses grow. That could create more jobs in our area.

When one door closes, another one opens. One by one, movers shifted boxes and materials from a truck into a space full of potential.

“The goal is to develop this into a high-tech industrial park and create jobs — high paying jobs — in the tech industry, where industries depend on high speed internet services that we could provide and have the facilities to make that happen,” Bill Bartleman said.

Bartleman is the director of special projects at WK&T. He says this move is just the start of revitalizing not only the old campus but Mayfield and the surrounding area.

While the company is working on moving into the former college campus, Bartleman says depending on what kind of industries move in, it could bring more than 900 jobs to the region.

Mary Lou Russelburg lives down the street from the old campus. She says the revitalization could help keep trained-skilled workers in the area.

“I’d like to see us grow, and I’d like to see our young people stay here instead of moving away, because we’ve lost so much, there’s nothing here to keep them. So, if it moves in a lot of jobs here — 900 — that’s a lot. That’s fantastic,” Russelburg said.

Bartleman believes it’s a step in the right direction for the whole area.

“It’s just good to re-purpose this campus again and to make it a vital part of the economic engine of the region,” Bartleman said.

Opening the closed doors where opportunity is knocking.

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