Bossier Parish Community College

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Buildings at Bossier Parish Community College reflect this style of architecture.
BPCC Theater
BPCC Administration Building
Health and Physical Education Complex at BPCC

Bossier Parish Community College is a two-year institution of higher education established in 1967 by the Louisiana State Legislature, initially as a pilot program to test the feasibility of commuter two-year colleges. The institution hence opened as the "thirteenth" and "fourteenth" grades of Airline High School in Bossier City.[1]

In 2004, BPCC moved to a new $55 million complex on U.S. Highway 80. An associate degree in music was added. The new campus held its grand opening on February 1, 2005. A Health and Physical Education Complex and Performing Arts Theatre officially opened.[1]

History[edit]

Classes began with 101 students and five full-time faculty, including Edwin T. "Eddy" Shell, who taught speech for more than forty years at BPCC until his death of cancer in 2008. In 1991, Shell was elected to the Bossier Parish Police Jury, the parish governing board, a position which he also retained until his death.[2]

The name "Bossier Parish Community College" was not established until 1973, and academic offerings were expanded in day and evening divisions. Efforts were also made to reach military personnel at Barksdale Air Force Base.[1]

In 1977, the Community Education Division began offering non-academic courses. The Northwest Louisiana Police Training Academy (renamed in 1984 as the Criminal Justice Institute) was created to serve ten northwest Louisiana parishes. The Respiratory Therapy Technology program began in 1978. From 1979 to 1984, BPCC was authorized to grant associate degrees in Occupational Studies. Two-year degrees were established in criminal justice, business administration, and office administration. In 1984, an associate degree in data processing was approved.[1]

The first commencement ceremony was held in 1980, when eight students received degrees. In 1983, BPCC received accreditation from the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. In 1995, Bossier Parish Community College entered into articulation agreements with Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, Northwestern State University at Natchitoches, Grambling State University in Grambling, Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia, Kilgore Junior College in Kilgore, Texas, and Louisiana State University at Shreveport to assist students in transferring credit hours to four-year institutions.[1]

BPCC programs[edit]

In 1996, BPCC added new associate degree programs to the curriculum in Physical Therapist Assistant, Emergency Medical Technician, and Computer Drafting and Design. On July 1, 1997, BPCC became a member of the University of Louisiana System. In May 1999, new programs were added: Associate degrees in Industrial Technology and Theatre; academic certificates in Computer Aided Drafting, Pharmacy Technician, and Telecommunications.[1]

On July 1, 1999, BPCC became a member of the Louisiana Community and Technical College System. In 2000, the Board of Regents approved the consolidation of associate degrees in Law Enforcement Technology and Corrections Science into a single Associate of Science in Criminal Justice. The regents also approved the conversion of the Culinary Arts non-credit program to an academic certificate program.[1]

In 2001, BPCC joined with Delgado Community College in New Orleans to implement a collaborative Pharmacy Technician program through the use of interactive video. The innovative program was inspired by new certification requirements instituted by the state in 1997. BPCC and DCC both determined that the certification requirements established a need for such a program in higher education.[3]

Notable people[edit]

Chancellor[edit]

Jim Henderson, a native of Shreveport, became the BPCC chancellor, effective July 1, 2009. He succeeded Tom Carleton, who held the position for fourteen years and served for forty-two years total in the field of professional education.[4]

In June 2010, BPCC ranked in the nation's Top 20 for community and technical colleges in graduation rates. "We just created an occupational therapy assistant program that is one of a kind in this area. Our nursing program is extremely innovative. . . . " said Jim Henderson.[5]

Others[edit]

  • John Agan (born 1958), assistant professor of history at BPCC, author, Minden native, and "Official Historian: of Webster Parish[6]
  • Bob G. Burford (1942-2009), Barton's Democratic opponent, was also affiliated with BPCC, having served as an academic chairperson. Burford was a member of the Bossier Parish Police Jury.[8]
  • Frances Swayzer Conley, an English professor and former high school educator, has written Home To Holly Grove: Cherishing Our Rich Heritage, a pictorial family history. This Holly Grove is the Holly Grove Colored Baptist Church in Wisner in Franklin Parish in northeastern Louisiana. The church was established by one of her ancestors, Eldridge King David Swayzer.[9] Home to Holly Grove is released through Sarah Hudson-Pierce's Ritz Publications in Shreveport.[10][11]In 2006, Conley published Prez Lives! Remembering Grambling's Ralph Waldo Emerson Jones, a biography of the late president Ralph Waldo Emerson Jones of historically black Grambling State University in Grambling in Lincoln Parish.[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Bossier Parish Community College
  2. ^ Bossier police juror remembered for smiles, stories | ShreveportTimes | The Times
  3. ^ Bossier Parish Community College and Delgado Community College Collaborative Pharmacy Technician Program Distance Education Initiative
  4. ^ Icess Fernandez, "Jim Henderson chosen as new BPCC chancellor", Shreveport Times, May 18, 2009
  5. ^ "Jim Potts, "BPCC now ranked in top 20 of United States elite colleges"". Minden Press-Herald, June 29, 2010. Retrieved June 30, 2010. 
  6. ^ Remembering Minden: Echoes of Our Past. Google Books. Retrieved January 26, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Stephaan Harris, "After 20 years of service in Bossier Parish, Jane Smith leaves to be a state representative", November 26, 1999". Shreveport Times. Retrieved July 18, 2009. 
  8. ^ Obituary of Bob G. Burford, Bossier Press-Tribune, June 25, 2009
  9. ^ "Book signing at LA State Museum on July 7". northshreveport.ksla.com. Retrieved January 26, 2013. 
  10. ^ Frances Conley was interviewed in 2012 by Donna Ladler on Louisiana Public Broadcasting's "Authors in Shreveport" feature at the Louisiana State Exhibit Museum.
  11. ^ "Frances Conley". media.lpb.org. Retrieved January 26, 2013. 
  12. ^ Prez Lives! Remembering Grambling's Ralph Waldo Emerson Jones. Trafford Publishing, ISBN 978-1-4120-9653-9. Retrieved January 26, 2013.