HOLLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — A former JCPenney store near Holland has been reborn as hub for higher education.

Leaders from Grand Rapids Community College and Ottawa County celebrated the opening of the new GRCC Lakeshore Campus with a ribbon cutting ceremony Thursday.

Located in The Shops at Westshore mall, the 52,000-square-foot facility allows GRCC to bring classes from four locations under one roof. The GRCC Lakeshore Campus features nine classrooms, four computer labs and five labs designated for various types of instruction, including manufacturing jobs. The $12 million transformation also created spaces for student support services, a library and community meeting spaces.

GRCC has offered lakeshore classes for more than 20 years. However, GRCC President Bill Pink said the new campus is “taking higher education on the Lakeshore to a new level.”

The new campus opens after a recent uptick in enrollment at GRCC, thanks in part to community college programs created during the pandemic, such as Futures for Frontliners and Michigan Reconnect.

Thursday’s ceremony kicks off three days of events promoting the new campus, which will cap off with a community open house Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Fall classes begin Aug. 30.