Merritt College

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Coordinates: 37°47′19.72″N 122°9′59.01″W / 37.7888111°N 122.1663917°W / 37.7888111; -122.1663917

Merritt College
Established 1954
Type Community college
President Robert Adams, Ed.D.
Students 6,000
Location Oakland, California, USA
Campus Suburban: 125 acres (0.5 km²)
Colors Royal Blue, Gold and White
Nickname Thunderbirds
Affiliations California Community Colleges and Peralta Community College District

Merritt College is a two-year community college located in the Oakland Hills section of Oakland in Alameda County, California. The school's enrollment is approximately 6,000 students. The college is named after physician Dr. Samuel Merritt.

The college, in addition to the other three campuses of the Peralta College District, is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.


The college is part of the Peralta Community College District and was opened as a general campus in 1954 (it had been known as the Merritt School of Business, and along with what is now Laney College, operated by the Oakland Unified School District as Oakland Junior College, which became the nucleus of the Peralta Colleges). In 1966, two Merritt College students, Huey Newton and Bobby Seale formed the Black Panther Party.

The college originally opened in the former Grove Street campus of University High School (1923–1948), located at what is now 5714 Martin Luther King Jr. Way. This site, now rehabilitated and serving as the north campus of the Children's Hospital and Research Center Oakland, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1992.[1][2][3][4]

The original location of Merritt College was used as the primary filming location for the 1987 film, "The Principal." Starring James Belushi.[citation needed]

The present campus was opened in 1971, the result of a 1965 bond issue which also established a new downtown Oakland campus building for Laney College and the founding of the College of Alameda.

Occupational programs[edit]

Merritt College's occupational programs include nursing and health professions, community social services/substance abuse counseling, environmental hazardous materials technology, computer information systems, landscape horticulture and environmental management, paralegal studies, and restoration technology. A one year Microscopy Certificate is also offered.[5]

Notable alumni[edit]

Robert George Seale (Black Panther Party Activist)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ ArchiPlanet, University High School, accessed May 24, 2007
  2. ^ Merritt College and Peralta District History Archive, accessed May 24, 2007
  3. ^ City of Oakland, Oakland History Timeline, accessed May 24, 2007
  4. ^ NRHP, CALIFORNIA - Alameda County - Vacant / Not In Use, accessed May 24, 2007
  5. ^ Merritt Microscopy, accessed June 16, 2009
  6. ^ "Glenn Burke Stats". Baseball Almanac. Retrieved December 10, 2012. 

External links[edit]