KINSTON, N.C. (WNCT) – Lenoir Community College is bringing the classroom to the students. It’s through the use of their new instructional studios.

“We’re using it to deliver instruction to local high schools,” said Dr. Timothy Maddox-Fisher, the vice president of instruction and institutional effectiveness for LCC. “We’re teaching math to them. They log in from the comfort of the classroom. They each have headphones and they’re logged into personal iPads given to them by the school.”

It’s a move the college saw coming before the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Right before COVID, we decided to outfit classes with all of the smart technology,” Maddox-Fisher said. “Moving post-COVID, we’re now in a virtual world, so this puts us one step ahead in being able to deliver a first-rate experience for students.”

These aren’t just your normal virtual classes on Zoom. The instructional studios are complete with interactive whiteboards, cameras, lights and multiple screens.

“It gives different ways to instruct which is one of the benefits of a seated course so those students are now getting that same experience online,” said Tori Tate, the instructional design and technology coordinator for LCC.

There are currently a few instructors using the space.

“They come in worried and stressed out with the technology, but when they’re done with the training, they’re excited to get into the classroom and use the technology,” said Crystal Carter, the instructional technology specialist at LCC.

Around 40% of the LCC population is high school students from their service area. School leaders hope this new space provides opportunities for even more of those students.

“In the past, if one county would ask for a class at a certain time and another would need it at a similar time, we’d have to send two instructors to the different counties,” Maddox-Fisher said. “The goal moving forward would be to have that instructor sit here and they can deliver it to two or three counties at one time.

“We always want to be cutting edge, and we feel like we’re one of the first community colleges on the state to do something similar.”

The community college currently has two instructional studios and will look at adding various classes to the setting in the near future.