RALEIGH, N.C. – The new biotech job training and education center being built at North Carolina State University will be called the Golden LEAF Biomanufacturing Training and Education Center when it opens, NCSU said Tuesday.

The naming is in recognition of the Golden LEAF Foundation’s $38 million in contributions toward construction of the facility, which is called the BTEC.

The center is part of a collective effort across North Carolina to improve the state’s job force for biomanufacturing jobs.

The Golden LEAF Foundation oversees distribution of funds from the state’s lawsuit settlement with tobacco companies. The organization recently came under criticism from Gov. Mike Easley who said the group needed to be more aggressive in its economic development efforts. The foundation is based in Rocky Mount.

“BTEC will play a vital role in helping the state expand biomanufacturing, an area in which we are already third in the country,” said James Oblinger, NC State’s chancellor. “NC State is pleased to lead this partnership to create BTEC, and we are fortunate to have a partner like Golden LEAF, who understands the value of collaboration and the importance of this facility.”

According to Golden LEAF, it has invested some $70 million in biotechnology-related initiatives.

The job training and education center will be located on Centennial Campus at NCSU. It will provide training for as many as 2,000 people per year.