Diablo Valley College

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Diablo Valley College
DVC seal.jpg
Established 1949
Type Community College
Academic staff
Students 22,000
Location Pleasant Hill, California, United States
37°58′17″N 122°4′12″W / 37.97139°N 122.07000°W / 37.97139; -122.07000Coordinates: 37°58′17″N 122°4′12″W / 37.97139°N 122.07000°W / 37.97139; -122.07000
Campus Suburban
Colors Green and White
Nickname Vikings
Website http://www.dvc.edu/

Diablo Valley College (DVC) is a two-year community college in Pleasant Hill in Contra Costa County, California, USA.

DVC is one of three publicly supported two-year community colleges in the Contra Costa Community College District (along with Contra Costa College and Los Medanos College), and was opened in 1949. Current enrollment is more than 22,000 students, and DVC has 300 full-time and 370 part-time instructors.

DVC has satellite centers in San Ramon and Walnut Creek and also offers classes in other facilities in Concord, Martinez, Danville and San Ramon.


DVC is a “feeder” college to the University of California, Berkeley; California State University, East Bay; and to St. Mary’s College. DVC ranks among the top five transfer colleges in California.[1] In 2004, the top four transfer destinations were California State University, East Bay (formerly CSU-Hayward), San Francisco State University, UC Berkeley and UC Davis.

DVC also offers a variety of occupational specialties, including hotel/restaurant management, culinary arts, dental technology and real estate. DVC has a very active speech and debating team.

Diablo Valley College is a popular choice for Asian international students to complete lower-division college requirements for frequently crowded California universities.


Several sports are offered at Diablo Valley College including: men's and women's basketball, cross country, swimming and diving, tennis and water polo. Other sports include: baseball, football, lacrosse, track and field (men) and soccer, softball, volleyball (women).

DVC has had famous athletes throughout its sports history, probably most recognized being Willie McGee, a former MLB National League MVP who played for the DVC baseball team in 1977.[2] Another notable baseball alumni is Doug Davis, who pitched in Major League Baseball from 1999-2011.

Demarshay Johnson, a former DVC basketball star who went on to play for the University of Nevada, was named CCCAA 1st team All-State after the 2004-05 season. That season he led the CCCAA in blocks, averaging 5.2 per game and was named Bay Valley Conference MVP.

The DVC Viking men's lacrosse program was the first junior college club in California, forming in 2008. In 2013 DVC were crowned champion of the California Junior College Lacrosse Association (CJCLA).[3]


From the College's Website:

The college officially began in 1949, in some of the most unlikely sites: high schools, banks, churches, even an old army camp. Called East Contra Costa Junior College, we moved to our present site in 1952, in ten steel buildings acquired from the government for $45 each. The cornerstone for the first permanent building was laid in 1953, and the name Diablo Valley College was adopted in 1958.

We've come a long way since those humble beginnings. Over one and a half million students have enrolled here since 1949! As we salute our heritage, we look forward to serving one of Northern California's most dynamic, education-minded areas for another 50 years.

For over 60 years, Diablo Valley College has provided quality education to the community it serves. A million students later, enrolling at DVC is one of the best ways you can ensure acceptance at a four-year college. DVC is not only recognized as one of California's best community colleges, but it also leads the state in transfer to four-year institutions.

Research figures recently released by UCLA's Center for the Study of Community Colleges show that DVC's transfer rate to four-year universities is 67 percent higher than the national average. Another report, released by the California Post-secondary Educational Commission, shows that DVC ranked number one in transfers in the state, ahead of all other California community colleges.

A brief history of our land shows us that this was originally home to the Costanoan Indians. In 1844, the Mexican government granted the land to William Welch, and it became part of his huge Rancho Las Juntas, which included northwestern Walnut Creek, all of Pleasant Hill, and the northeastern half of Martinez. After World War II the land was subdivided into housing tracts, and on October 5, 1950, the College Board of Trustees purchased the DVC site for $172,500. Construction began in September, 1951.

With over 22,000 students of all ages and a host of programs, you'll find a dynamic educational environment and a lively atmosphere at DVC. Our Pleasant Hill campus is located off of Interstate 680, and the campus is situated on one hundred acres of gently rolling hills in view of Mt. Diablo, a northern California landmark. The San Ramon Valley Center in Dougherty Valley opened its doors to students in November 2006.

Both of our handsomely landscaped locations are a short distance from San Francisco, creating the ideal settings for the premier transfer institution in California. We are the college of choice for many students from the private and public high schools in the nearby Martinez, Mt. Diablo, San Ramon, and Acalanes School Districts.

Grade-fixing scandal[edit]

In 2007, a six-year grade fixing scheme came to light with allegations that some of the alleged 84 students used sex or cash as payment to student employees in the admissions and records office in exchange for over 400 grade changes.[4] Many of these students have transferred to universities and in some cases may have already graduated. By November 2007, 49 students had been charged with misdemeanors or felonies over the incident, and at least one had accepted a no contest plea.[5] A spokesperson for the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges said that although the scandal was a negative factor it would be unlikely to lead to the school's loss of accreditation.[6]

International Education Center[edit]

About the ESL Program –

The International Education Center at Diablo Valley College (IEC@DVC) opened in 2000, and since then has welcomed students from more than 40 countries. IEC works closely with Diablo Valley College, and the English language, homestay and activity programs are carefully designed to prepare international students for successful academic life. The mission of the intensive English language program at the International Education Center is to facilitate the acquisition of English for non-native speakers and to prepare them both linguistically and culturally for academic studies and success at the college and/or university level. IEC provides students with both intensive English and academic preparation with convenient 8-week sessions. Those qualified students interested in enrolling at Diablo Valley College may do so without taking the TOEFL test provided that they complete their chosen IEC program. In addition, students should know that DVC is the number one feeder institution to the University of California at Berkeley and provides pathways to a bachelor’s degree at many other excellent universities.

Surrounding Area –

The International Education Center at Diablo Valley College is located in Pleasant Hill, California, which is in the East Bay of the San Francisco Bay Area about 30 minutes east of downtown San Francisco by direct train. With a population of around 33,000, Pleasant Hill has a varied landscape with some valleys and rolling hills. The city’s mild climate is Mediterranean-like in that there are cool and wet winters and dry, warm summers. San Francisco is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world and boast world class museums, restaurants and stores. On the weekends, students are only a few hours away from enjoying great skiing in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, hiking in Yosemite National Park, wine tasting in the famous Napa Valley or surfing in the Pacific Ocean.

About This Course –

The Intensive English Program at Diablo Valley College’s International Education Center (IEC@DVC) is designed to prepare students for academic success. The program offers 6 levels of intensive English classes for all levels from beginners to advanced learners. Each level is an 8-week session which includes 24 hours of in-class instruction per week. All new IEC students take a placement test during orientation to determine their level of English. During the placement test, students are assessed on their knowledge of reading, writing, speaking, grammar, and listening in English. In addition to intensive English, students are also provided with academic preparation and conditional admission to Diablo Valley College. IEC provides students with many opportunities to practice their English skills in the real world. Weekend trips, volunteer opportunities, academic workshops, and daily activities are organized during the week to highlight and utilize the fun and exciting environment California has to offer.

Once students reach the advanced level, the program will begin preparing students to succeed at Diablo Valley College or take a bachelor’s or master’s degree program from a top university. Students who complete the highest level of academic ESL at IEC have direct entry into DVC without taking the TOEFL test. 95% of IEC students continue on to DVC or other universities.

All IEC instructors hold a Master’s Degree in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL), Linguistics or a related field and have taught abroad. Class sizes are small with a maximum of 15 students to ensure a low student to teacher ratio, individual attention, and student success.

College newspaper[edit]

The Inquirer, the college's student-run newspaper, is produced on campus by the Journalism 126 class. The paper has been produced with as many as 10 pages, but has been forced to print only four to six pages as funding has declined.[7]

The newspaper was forced to produce its paper off-site at the Contra Costa Times newsroom when a bomb-threat in 2006 closed the campus and access to the newsroom was restricted.[8]

The Inquirer won General Excellence awards from the Journalism Association of Community Colleges in 2006, 2010, 2011 and 2012. The newspaper also won a Pacesetter award from JACC in 1999.


The student union at DVC is named for Margaret Lesher,[9] widow of Dean Lesher, founder of the Contra Costa Times and cofounder of the Margaret and Dean Lesher Foundation.[10]

Notable alumni[edit]

In addition to the athletes named above, notable alumni of Diablo Valley include:


External links[edit]