American River College

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American River College
TypePublic community college
Established1955; 67 years ago (1955)
Parent institution
Los Rios Community College District
PresidentMelanie Dixon[1]
Students42,141 (2013-2014) [2]
, ,
United States

American River College (ARC) is a public community college in unincorporated Sacramento, California. It is part of the California Community Colleges System.


California Governor Gavin Newsom with American River College employee Maria celebrating Labor Day 2019.

The college was opened in 1955 as American River Junior College, on the site of the old Grant Technical College. It moved to its current location in 1958, occupying eight newly built office complexes and the original Cameron ranch house. In 1965 the college became a part of the Los Rios Community College District and became American River College. Today, along with Cosumnes River College, Folsom Lake College and Sacramento City College, ARC is directed by a seven-member board of trustees elected by voters residing in the district.

The climactic police showdown of the 1986 Emilio Estevez and Demi Moore film Wisdom was filmed on the American River campus, including in and around Beaver Stadium.

During the period of 2004–2013, the college opened a variety of new facilities, including buildings for Health Education, Theater & Music, Kinesiology, and Life Science and Fine Arts. In addition, the college also expanded its bookstore and library and opened a new Student Center and parking garage.

In 2008 the student government supported California Proposition 8 which sought to restrict marriage to opposite-sex couples.[3] In 2010 the Board of Trustees lost a lawsuit[clarification needed] against the student government.[4][5]


The college occupies a 155-acre (63 ha) site on the old Cameron Ranch in northern Sacramento County.


The college enrolls about 35,000 full-time and part-time students, making it one of the largest community colleges in California. ARC has published its own literary journal since 1984, the American River Review, which has won numerous national awards and recognitions, including the National Pacemaker Award from the Associated Collegiate Press and Gold Crowns from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association.

It transfers more students to UC Davis and CSU Sacramento than any other community college. Nontransfer students may enroll for certification in technical/vocational programs, continuing education credit, or personal enrichment. The college also offers three different types of online learning: online, hybrid, and web-enhanced.

Student life[edit]

The campus has its own newspaper, the American River Current, and its own English as a Second Language newsletter, The Parrot.


The college athletics teams are nicknamed the Beavers.

Notable people[edit]

Notable sportspeople[edit]


  1. ^ "Melanie Dixon to Serve as American River College's Next President". (in American English). November 12, 2020. Retrieved 27 February 2021.
  2. ^ "2017 Student Success Scorecard". Retrieved 1 October 2017.
  3. ^
  5. ^ "YouTube". Retrieved 1 October 2017.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°38′58″N 121°20′46″W / 38.64946°N 121.34623°W / 38.64946; -121.34623