SWCC 50 Years of Milestones

SWCC 50 Years of Milestones

In 1966 the General Assembly of Virginia authorized the establishment of a state-wide system of comprehensive community colleges, one of which was to be established in the area serving the counties of Buchanan, Dickenson (partial), Russell, and Tazewell.

A delegation of local citizens met with State officials to determine the feasibility of immediate development of a community college for the region. A local College Board was appointed in the summer of 1967. The Local Board recommended that the college be named Southwest Virginia Community College and that Dr. Charles R. King be appointed as president.

  • 1967
    Local College Board recommends Dr. Charles R. King for President's position in July 1967.
  • 1967
    Buchanan Hall, the College's first building, dramatically changed the landscape. Groundbreaking took place in October.
  • 1968
    Charter faculty & staff included 34 faculty and 13 staff. (l-r) Back row- Clark Farrington, Frank Nunez, Mark Armstrong, Armand Opitz, Stafford Compton, Joe Stevenson, Mr. Wells, Lee Marshal, Curtis Cox, Don Smith, Dr. King: Front row; Albert Arnold, A.K. Greer, Pat Carter, Nancy Cyphers, Daisy Campbell, Virginia White, Barbara Buskill
  • 1968
    Dr. King speaks to student body at first convocation. SWCC opened its doors to almost double the projected enrollment.
  • 1970
    First full graduation ceremony on June 13 with 90 graduates. The commencement address was given by Lt. Governor J. Sargeant Reynolds.
  • 1971
    The College receives SACS accreditation, retroactively to the first graduating class.
  • 1972
    Groundbreaking for Russell and Dickenson Halls in March.
  • 1973
    Tazewell Hall construction began in November. With the addition of this building the college's available space tripled within 3 years.
  • 1982
    The SWCC Educational Foundation was established in April 1982. The Lamp of Knowledge serves as the Foundation logo.
  • 1988
    Inspection of construction of Ralph B. Davis Hall, which was dedicated in October 1988.
  • 1997
    The National Guard Armory groundbreaking in 1997.
  • 1997
    Charles R. King Community Center opened in October
  • 2003
    The College Foundation acquired 85 additional acres for the College in April.
  • 2007
    Dr. Charles R. King, founding president, retires.
  • 2007
    Dr. William F. Snyder serves as interim president.
  • 2007
    Dr. J. Mark Estepp takes the helm of the College on July 2, 2007.
  • 2008
    Alex E. Booth Center opened on January 13 in Grundy VA.
  • 2009
    Opening of the Earl and Dorothy Dellinger Learning Resources Center took place on September 18.
  • 2012
    Extensive renovation of Russell Hall included a new state of the art Multi-Disciplinary Clinical Simulation Center.
  • 2014
    The Dedication of the SWCC Family and CONSOL Energy Bell Tower was the culmination of the No Limits campaign begun in 2012.
  • 2016
    Campus aerial photo taken by a drone during fall 2016.

The visual timeline of SWCC’s growth compiled by the Public Relations Office.