CITY OF NEWBURGH — Members of a committee tasked with planning the Newburgh school district's new Career and Technical Education Center spent part of their summer traveling to sites as nearby as Mount Saint Mary College and as far away as Grand Prairie, Texas, for research.

Roger Ramjug, director of management efficiency and capital projects administrator for the Newburgh school district, and CTE Director John Etri delivered an update on the capital bond project during Tuesday's school board meeting at the Newburgh Free Library.

Ramjug said a committee of 24 people that includes CTE teachers, architects, district administrators, a school board member, a member of the district communications team and others, visited technical education sites in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Texas to brainstorm what they would like to build for Newburgh students.

Etri showed the board photos of those CTE centers with grand external architecture, open-ceiling classrooms, multi-purpose class furniture styles and thoughtful building designs that make the spaces easy to adapt as industry and technology changes.

"In order for us to quantify the size, we have to quantify the contents of building, so we have begun that research with a space and equipment layout and will eventually get to the point to where we can make decisions about design features," Ramjug said.

Newburgh's CTE Center will house some of the district's specialized programs that prepare high school students for college, careers and trades.

The new facility was at the heart of an ambitious, two-part capital bond plan voters approved in May. The $75 million center will be constructed on Newburgh Free Academy's main campus.

The building would have a garage for automotive tech classes; a kitchen for culinary courses; a gymnasium; and classroom spaces for fashion design, photography, barbering, business management and other specialized programs, according to plans presented before the bond vote earlier this year.

Etri and Ramjug's presentation from Tuesday can be viewed online at

The district plans to provide updates about capital bond projects during the first school board meeting of each month, said Superintendent Roberto Padilla.