Napa Valley College Celebrates its 75th Anniversary
Not many 75-year-olds have birthday parties that last a whole year, but Napa Valley College will celebrate several times between the Independence Day parade in downtown Napa next week and the July 4 parade next year.
Celebrating a birthday is more than an excuse to have fun and enjoy cake. It is also an appropriate way to say something about how the guest of honor has enriched our lives and continues to help the people we love.
Napa Valley College is inviting residents to tell their stories so that the next generation might realize they could attend and someday tell their own stories of enrichment, employment and success. If you have stories or photos to contribute to this ongoing effort please send them electronically to Doug Ernst firstname.lastname@example.org).
Take a Stroll Down Memory Lane
(Click on the image for a time line of NVC events.)
The alumni date back to the Second World War, when families flocked to the West Coast in search of jobs in the defense industry. Thanks to Mare Island Naval Shipyard and Basalt, Napa was the third-fastest-growing city on the West Coast in October, 1942, trailing Los Angeles and Oakland.
Dr. Harry McPherson, the Napa High School principal, made job training available by gaining public support for a school bond that would create a junior college as part of Napa High School. The $650,000 bond issue received more than 90 percent of the vote in June, 1941.
The college expanded to its current location in 1965 and later became Napa Valley College. Many changes have taken place at the college, which prepares students for four-year universities. But it also remains a job training center, with welding and machine tool technology programs that have employers waiting outside their doors to grab newly certified welders and machinists.
The same is true for a host of other NVC programs that – year after year – crank out job-ready psychiatric technicians, nurses, winemakers, child development professionals, hospitality workers and managers, respiratory therapists, paramedics, engineers, graphic designers, architects, police officers, performing artists and athletes.
Over the years, the college opened a second campus that features the Napa Valley Cooking School, whose graduates snap up jobs with top chefs in top restaurants.
The college and its graduates contribute more than $300 million to the economy every year.
This site is a work in progress. Over the next few weeks and months, we will be posting stories about our history and people who have helped make Napa Valley College the institution it is today. Check back often for these stories and upcoming events.
For the 75th Anniversary logo usage on communications and campaign material, click here.
Click on the logo to the right to download a high resolution jpg image.