TARRANT COUNTY COLLEGE
TARRANT COUNTY COLLEGE. Voters of Tarrant County formed the Tarrant County Junior College District in a bond election on July 31, 1965. The district boundaries are coterminous with those of Tarrant County and enclose an area of 900 square miles. The first campus, the South Campus, opened in September 1967, with an $11 million facility on a 158-acre tract; 4,194 students were enrolled in credit classes. In 1968, when the Northeast Campus opened, the total enrollment on both campuses was 7,210. The Northeast facility, in Hurst, covers 188 acres and was constructed at a cost of $10 million. By the fall of 1975, when the Northwest Campus began operations, the total enrollment was 19,495. The Northwest Campus, located on 150 acres on the north edge of Marine Creek Lake, cost $12 million. The total enrollment of the district, which is governed by a seven-member board of trustees elected by the people of Tarrant County, was 27,109 in the fall of 1989. Numerous changes to the physical plants have occurred at the authorization of Tarrant County voters. Additions to the South and Northeast campuses were made between 1972 and 1975. The May Owen Center, which houses the district offices in downtown Fort Worth, was built in 1983. The total value of all district facilities, including a 123-acre site in Arlington purchased in 1987 for a fourth campus, was $111,969,000 in 1990. By 1987 over half of the funding for the college came from the state; the remainder came from local taxes, tuition, and fees. The college received federal financial aid and private foundation grants for various student financial-aid programs. A foundation, Friends of Tarrant County Junior College, was established in 1989 to raise funds for faculty development and various enrichment programs. The Southeast Campus opened in 1996, and the initial enrollment of 3,700 was about half again as many as had been expected. The college is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and approved by the Texas Education Agency and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. It is a member of the American Association of Community Colleges. The college operates under the supervision of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. The college's nursing, automotive technology, and industrial technology programs are concentrated on the South Campus. The Northeast Campus houses most of the programs in health sciences. The Northwest Campus utilizes the adjacent Marine Creek Lake for classes in sailing and canoeing. In addition, by 1990 a Criminal Justice Training Center and Regional Police Academy served area needs. The college also offers degree programs in postal service administration, fire investigation technology, and fire protection technology, as well as horticulture, airframe maintenance and electronics technology, aviation maintenance technology, and interpreting for the deaf. Each campus has a library. In addition, the district has a television station on the South Campus. Publications of the district include a weekly student newspaper, the Collegian. The college is maintained to provide lifelong educational opportunities for county citizens. It has special programs for gifted and underprivileged youth, as well as for senior citizens. By 1990 enrollment in community and continuing education programs exceeded 40,000 persons annually. Tarrant County College had 1,140 faculty members and 26,868 students in the fall of 2000. A large number of the faculty was part-time. The board of trustees voted in 1999 to remove the word "Junior" from the college's name. Leonardo de la Garza was chancellor in 2001, and Michael Saenz, Ernest L. Thomas, Larry Darlage, and Judith Carrier were presidents of the Northwest, South, Northeast, and Southeast campuses, respectively.
A Guide to Higher Education in North Texas, 1989–1990 (Richardson, Texas: Association for Higher Education of North Texas, 1988). Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.