Riverside Community College District has the distinction of being home to one of the oldest community colleges in the state (Riverside City College, est. 1916) and the two newest community colleges in California (Moreno Valley College and Norco College, est. 1992 as campuses, accredited as colleges in 2010).
RCCD is known as a leader among California’s community college districts and its colleges frequently garner state and national acclaim for innovative programs and initiatives--many of which become models for other higher education institutions. These include Passport to College, which helped spur the national Gear Up early college awareness initiative; Gateway to College, the first Gates Foundation-supported charter school in California; and, Completion Counts, a college access/success initiative that is a model for private/public/education partnerships.
The District is also known for offering the first community college-based comprehensive Physician Assistant program in the western United States, opening the Center for Social Justice & Civil Liberties, operating the Riverside Aquatics Complex (the only Olympic quality practice and competition venue in inland California), and being the site of a NSF National Center of Excellence for Supply Chain Technology Education.
All of these programs, initiatives, and honors are indicative of what I believe are three of our greatest strengths as a community college: the quality of education we provide, the partnerships we are able to build in the public and private sector, and the support we receive from our diverse communities. Without doubt, our three institutions strive to be true community-oriented colleges.
Michael Burke Ph.D.