KLAMATH FALLS — Klamath Community College is pleased to announce a new partnership with the 142nd Wing in Portland, Ore. The partnership has established an educational testing center for Airmen in Northwest Oregon and Washington to assist in college degree completion and career advancement.

KCC is partnering and supporting development of the new 500-square-foot testing center, located at the Portland Air National Guard Base, at the request of the 142nd Wing. The center will serve 1,500 enlisted officers across several military branches and is slated to open in September.

“The 142nd Wing is really excited and grateful to join in partnership with Klamath Community College. Together we will provide educational benefits for our citizen Airmen, soldiers, seamen, and Coast Guard personnel to progress not only in their military careers, but afford them the opportunity to bring skills and education into their civilian communities,” said Bobbi Kennedy, group superintendent for the 142nd Wing Mission Support Group.

The center will provide college-level examination program (CLEP) testing for college math and other courses required to complete a Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) degree or an associate degree. Airmen who complete a CCAF have options to enroll in a Base to Bachelor’s program at either Oregon Tech or Eastern Oregon University, or they can apply to their university of choice.

KCC will provide the center with five computers and the tests will be proctored in-person, at the Portland location, once per month, by KCC employees. KCC will also provide education advising to service members who use the center.

“Promotion in the U.S. Air Force requires Airmen to earn a college degree, which is not always easy for people juggling service with family and other responsibilities. This center will provide access, save money, and will improve retention for many in the process of completing a college degree,” said KCC President Dr. Roberto Gutierrez. “Klamath Community College is proud to partner with the base to provide these much-needed services in Oregon and Washington.”

KCC Veterans Services Director Tracy Heap noted that once the testing center is open, enlisted Oregon residents who want to take a CLEP test will no longer have to go to Tacoma, a roundtrip that can take a full day or sometimes require an overnight stay.

“The center’s close proximity to where many service members live will provide flexibility needed for people to achieve their goals sooner, creating earlier opportunities for advancement, while incurring less cost to achieve those goals,” Heap said. “The center’s focus is to help servicemen be successful in their careers and later on in civilian jobs.”