DES MOINES – At its meeting yesterday, the Highline Community College Board of Trustees voted unanimously to change the name of Highline Community College, returning the institution to its original name of Highline College.
The board changed the college’s name to reflect state approval of four Bachelor of Applied Science degree programs, slated to start fall quarter 2014. The B.A.S. degree programs provide the third and fourth years of college work for people who have completed a two-year technical degree. The four programs are Cybersecurity and Forensics, Global Trade and Logistics, Respiratory Therapy, and Youth Development.
Highline College was established in 1961 as a “Community College serving the Highline area.” In 1967, the Washington State Legislature passed the Community College Act of 1967, creating a statewide system for community colleges. With the passage of the act, Highline changed its name to Highline Community College.
In his presentation to the board, President Jack Bermingham said, “Students were at the core of the decision to change the name, as the community college title may disadvantage B.A.S. graduates in the job market.”
“Changing the name will not change the mission,” he added. “Highline has, and will always be, an institution of higher education, focused on serving the educational needs of our local community.”
In making its decision, the board reinforced its commitment to the college’s mission to promote student engagement, learning, and achievement, while sustaining relationships within its communities. Board Chair Bob Roegner said, “We want to put students in the best possible position when they earn credentials at Highline, both in terms of what they learn here and how their education is perceived by business and industry. We believe changing our name will benefit students.”
The name change will take effect July 1, 2014.
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Highline College was founded in 1961 as the first community college in King County. With approximately 18,000 annual students and 350,000 alumni, it is one of the state’s largest institutions of higher education. The college offers a wide range of academic transfer and professional-technical education programs, with day, evening and weekend classes. Alumni include former Seattle Mayor Norm Rice, entrepreneur Junki Yoshida and Washington state poet laureate Sam Green.