LBCC: 80 years old

As I watch young freshmen and old undergrads pay for their courses across from me at the Valhalla, now a makeshift cashier’s office to pay for registration, I can’t help but be sentimental about 80 years at Long Beach City College. I had graduated from LBCC for a couple of years now, and I would like to use this blog to reflect on the history of the humble junior college at the corner of Carson Street and Clark Avenue.

From Wikipedia…

Founded in 1927, Long Beach City College was initially housed at Wilson Classical High School in southeast Long Beach. An earthquake in 1933 resulted in classes being held at Recreation Park until 1935, when the college moved into its Liberal Arts Campus in Lakewood Village at Carson Street and Clark Avenue.

During and after World War II, the college increased so rapidly that a new campus had to be established. This was realized in 1949 with the establishment of the Pacific Coast Campus, occupied on the former site of Hamilton Junior High School. As Long Beach City College grew in the 1970s, state law separated the college from the Long Beach Unified School District. In that decade and the 1980s, Proposition 13 signaled retrenchment for the college, with many popular classes and services folding.

Also during the 1980s, the arrival of refugees from Southeast Asia resulted in the need for extensive courses in the ESL program. This program became the largest at the college due to a later wave of amnesty applicants.

1987 saw the college acquire neighboring Veterans Memorial Stadium from the City of Long Beach. In recent years, the college has upgraded the stadium playing surface, its swimming pool facility, as well as established wireless internet and e-mail services in 2005.

Bond Measure E has seen the construction of a Child Development Center at the PCC, and construction for new buildings on both campuses are underway, including a new South Quad Complex Building on the former LAC golf mall, a new Industrial Technology Building at the PCC, and a new East Campus for the Culinary Arts Program.

Things have changed since then. Now the college is celebrating its 80th anniversary. And I am typing this as the new guys finish paying for their classes.

Nothing has changed. Well, some.