ABILENE – The largest project from last November’s bond election finally has a name.

After months of calling the new center that will house the AISD’s seven CTE programs as well as ATEMS the “CTE / ATEMS Center,” the AISD Board of Trustees voted Monday night to finally give the facility a name. After a sub-committee consisting of board members Daryl Zeller, Cindy Earles and Angie Wiley – as well as district administrators – reviewed several naming options presented by the project architect (Huckabee), two naming options were given to the board to vote on at Monday night’s meeting. The first of the options was The LIFT Center (short for the Leadership & Innovation in Future Technologies) and the second option was The RISE Center (Readiness • Innovation • Spirt • Entrepreneurship). The board discussed all of the options at last Thursday night’s board workshop meeting, leaving little discussion for Monday night’s meeting.

After a brief discussion, a motion was made to name the new facility The LIFT Center and it quickly passed, giving the facility a name.

The LIFT Center will be on the Texas State Technological Center campus on Loop 322 near the Abilene Regional Airport. Construction documents on the 124,000 square foot facility should be done by Thanksgiving and the job will go out for bid before the end of the year. AISD Superintendent Dr. David Young said the district should open the bids to build the project in late January and could award the contract in February.

Construction will begin shortly after that with the facility set to open in time for the 2021-22 school year. District officials hope the facility will take on the pseudonym “The LIFT” in the days to come.

“The LIFT has a positive connotation to the name and I think our kids will respond to it,” Young said. “This center will always be a place for specialized instruction that will allow students to prepare themselves for life after high school. The same seven programs might not be part of the CTE program in 30 years as we have now, but the name ‘The LIFT’ doesn’t paint us into a corner.”