Metropolitan Community College is in the process of revamping its dual-credit system and early college program. Interim President of the Blue River and Business and Technology campuses Michael Banks said the community college is seeking to make it easier for high school students to graduate with an associate’s degree at the same time they earn their high school diploma during Wednesday’s Independence Chamber of Commerce luncheon.

Banks also mentioned MCC’s plans to shut down the Business and Technology campus in Kansas City, but assured no programs will be lost in the process.

“We will not be closing any programs; no programs are sunsetting,” he said. “The current location and condition of the facilities make it impractical to continue operating there.”

Banks said programs at the Business and Technology campus will be relocated to other MCC campuses. He also added the school is preparing to open its cyber-security program and building.

Representatives from the north and south Independence branches of the Mid-Continent Public Library mentioned the organization’s own plans for expansion. Branch Managers Andrew Phillips and Tiffany Montino reminded attendees of the capital plan happening across the system, adding new libraries and renovating others.

The library system will be part of a pilot program with the Fort Osage School District and Community Services League, bringing a joint food bank and public library to the Susquehanna area of the city, seeing how much of a need there is in the community.

Phillips also advised attendees of the upcoming literary festival, “Lit Up,” hosted by the north branch on May 4.

“We have some big authors coming down for some book talks,” he said.

The festival is aimed at Young Adult readers, and about 1,000 teens attended last year’s iteration of the event, according to Phillips.