Houston Community College – Southwest
Long a strong proponent of quality education, for a quarter century the City of Stafford has enjoyed a unique education-government partnership with Houston Community College-Southwest, located on Cash Road, just down the street from the Stafford Centre. The City took the initiative to formally join the Houston Community College System in 1989 when it called an election to have the Stafford Municipal School District annexed into the HCC System. Citizens of Stafford approved that action with an overwhelming majority vote.
By 1995, the HCC – Stafford Campus facilities, originally located in 1983 in a converted warehouse provided by the City, were “bursting at the seams.” The City responded by having pushed through precedent-setting legislation passed by the Texas Legislature that allowed the City to sell bonds to expand the campus with the construction of a science and technology center. Stafford citizens approved the bonds. The debt was paid entirely with student fees, at no cost to taxpayers.
The Scarcella Science and Technology Center opened its doors in the spring of 1998. The 75,000-square-foot academic building houses 6 science labs, 13 computer labs, 15 general-purpose classrooms, a 105-seat lecture hall and 3 computer-equipped business technology classrooms. It contains a television station that offers students an associate’s degree in Broadcast Technology. This facility also houses S-METV, the City’s municipal-educational television station that broadcasts most governmental meetings live. It brings a whole new dimension to local television service for the citizens of Stafford. Also located in the Center is a corporate training center that offers videoconferencing facilities and provides businesses with an opportunity to train employees on new software.
A spectacular new addition to the HCC-Stafford Campus was completed in 2009. It is a 120,000 square-foot Learning Hub which provides 30,000 square feet of classroom, lab space and a library, as well as additional parking and capacity for 3,300 more students.
With over 10,000 students enrolled at the HCC-Stafford Campus, the campus is the largest in the HCC district both in terms of enrollment and size. Considering the all-around programs for core academics, workforce training and continuing education, it is expected to fully develop the 70 acres and attract an enrollment of more than 20,000 students in the future.
|Houston Community College – Southwest
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