Quinebaug Valley Community College (QVCC) is a public two-year college, supported by the State of Connecticut and governed by the Board of Regents for Higher Education. Accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, QVCC is one of 17 institutions in the Connecticut State Colleges & Universities(CSCU) system and serves Windham County in the northeast corner of the state.
QVCC offers first-rate academic programs in accounting, allied health, art, business, computer science, education, engineering, general studies, human services, liberal arts and sciences, manufacturing, science, and technology studies. Graduates transfer easily to top-notch four-year colleges and universities or enter the workforce to begin or continue a career. QVCC also provides robust opportunities for continuing and professional education and custom training programs for business and industry. The College takes pride in being a community center, opening its library and many events to the general public. Lectures, art exhibitions, concerts, and dramatic productions attract many residents to the campus each semester. In short, QVCC is a viable and significant resource in and for the communities served.
Quinebaug Valley Community College provides opportunities for northeast Connecticut residents to learn in an affordable, challenging, and supportive environment that enables students to become fully engaged citizens in an ever-changing global community.
Adopted: June 2016
History of QVCC
As early as 1946, a group of area citizens sought to establish a two-year junior college in northeastern Connecticut to meet the educational needs of returning World War II veterans. Their vision finally became a reality in 1965 when the state organized the community college system. In 1969, Connecticut legislators authorized the establishment of a community college in Danielson.
Between 1969 and 1971, strong pressures at the state level mounted to postpone the opening of further colleges for an indefinite period. However, the efforts of the local Citizens Planning Committee and the support of thousands of local citizens who wrote letters to Hartford resulted in the state approving funds for classes to begin in fall 1971.
Under the leadership of Founding President Dr. Robert E. Miller, the College opened with 215 students, eight full-time professional employees, and a few office support personnel. Classes met at Harvard H. Ellis Regional Vocational Technical School and Killingly High School.
Even before the College opened, a Citizens Planning Committee had developed criteria for a campus and had visited several possible sites. By the fall of 1978, however, operating from four “temporary” locations in and around Danielson, QVCC faced the most difficult period in its history. The then Board of Education cut $1 million from the requested appropriation for the new campus and voted to delay beginning of construction. Many speculated QVCC would be merged with another community college.
An outpouring of citizens’ concern persuaded the Board of Higher Education to rescind its delay order and to restore $500,000 in funding. Within a few years, the state acquired 68 acres of land on Upper Maple Street, and Quinebaug Valley Community College welcomed students to its new campus in 1983.
The College took its name from a small tribe of Native Americans who inhabited the region. According to some sources, Quinebaug literally means “crazy river” - signifying the meandering course of the river that flows through south-central Massachusetts, eastern Connecticut, and western Rhode Island.
In 1986, QVCC opened a satellite location in Willimantic to better serve residents in southern Windham County. During the summer of 1992, the legislature authorized the merger of the community and technical colleges, enabling the College to expand its mission by offering career and technical education. In May 1992, after the retirement of Dr. Miller, Dianne E. Williams became the second president, and the following January, QVCC became a comprehensive community college.
After Ms. Williams retired, Dr. Ross Tomlin became the third president, serving from March 2010 to November 2012. Dr. Miller returned as interim president from December 2012 through July 2013, and Dr. Carmen Cid served as interim president through June 2014. Dr. Carlee R. Drummer began her tenure as the fourth president on July 1, 2014.
Campus and Facilities
QVCC conducts its educational and service programs from two locations: a 68-acre campus on the outskirts of Danielson and a Center in downtown Willimantic.
On the main campus is a large two-story structure consisting of three wings and a central core. There are also several modular office buildings.
Dean of Academic Affairs and Student Services
Science, computer, and medical assisting laboratories
Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center
Allied Health Lab
Citizens National Bank Corporate Seminar Room
Dean of Administrative Services
Robert E. Miller Auditorium
Student Success Center
Community and Professional Education
Marketing & Communications
Spirol Art Gallery
Quinebaug Middle College Wing
In January of 2014, construction was completed on a 38,000 square foot addition on the east end of the building to house the Quinebaug Middle College magnet high school, which has been embedded in QVCC since 2008. The new wing is used by the Middle College during the day and available for college use in the evenings. During the same construction project, QVCC’s cafeteria and library were expanded by approximately 2500 square feet each. The new facilities will allow the Middle College to grow to 180 students. The new wing includes:
- 3 regular classrooms
- 2 science labs
- 3 computer classrooms
- Art classroom
- Music room plus 2 recording studios
- Half gym and fitness room
- 3 collaborative classrooms
- Administrative and faculty offices
QVCC Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center
The new Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center is currently on schedule to open for classes in the fall of 2016. This 10,000 square foot facility will be equipped with the latest technologies available in today’s machining world, including a lab exclusively for Mechatronics and another lab for Metrology. Complete with geo-thermal heating and cooling, the surrounding property will be fitted with rain gardens complementing the outside area. The facility will offer both credit certificate courses and noncredit short-term training in both day and evening sessions. The building includes:
- Machine lab
- Metrology lab
- Mechatronics lab
- Conference room
- Adjunct and faculty office
- Classroom and computer lab
- Tool crib
Student Affairs Office
The Student Affairs Office (C151), located next to the Fireside Lounge, houses:
- Director of Student Services
- College Career Pathways
- Developmental Education
- Disability Services
- Records Office/Registrar
- Transition Services
- Veterans’ Services
Student Success Center
The Student Success Center (C129)
- Advising Services
- Career Services
- Financial Aid
- Transfer Services
Staff members assist students with applications, financial aid, registration, changing majors, and questions pertaining to admissions, transfer in, and transfer out. Students can also access an up-to-date job posting board, computers, and a fax service.
The QVCC Library provides a range of information resources and services to the college community. The library’s physical collection contains approximately 30,000 print books, 100 print periodicals, and more than 2,000 DVDs. The online library contains more than 250,000 ebooks; 50 article databases containing more than a half million articles from journals, magazines, and newspapers; and a streaming video collection with more than 20,000 documentary videos. Information literacy instruction is provided to individuals and classes in both Danielson and Willimantic. The Danielson library provides ample meeting space for both individuals and groups, including quiet study space, a quiet computer lab, and two student study rooms. In Willimantic, the library learning center provides research help via scheduled reference services, individual appointments, and class instruction sessions. The library’s media department maintains the library webpages and provides comprehensive media support for college programs and classes.
The Learning Center provides extensive learning support services to individual students and classes at the College, including exam proctoring, workshops in specialty subjects, and individual and small group academic assistance. Professional and trained peer tutors provide assistance by appointment and on a walk-in basis. Extended Learning Center hours make it available for both day and evening students. Similar services are provided at the Willimantic Center Library Learning Center. Online tutoring services are also available.
Follett operates a bookstore in Danielson as well as a smaller store at the Willimantic Center that is open during the first few weeks of each semester. The main Danielson Bookstore is located just off the atrium in the west wing. In addition to textbooks, the Bookstore carries all necessary art and school supplies, as well as clothing, backpacks, and gift items.
Quinebaug Middle College
This regional magnet high school, which opened its doors in 2008, offers an innovative educational experience to non-traditional learners in grades 10-12 who are capable students, but in danger of dropping out of school. Located on the Danielson campus, QMC provides students with the individual support they need to succeed while they complete their high school education, attend college classes and earn college credits. Community service, internships and student engagement are essential educational components of this unique high school/college experience. QMC is run by EASTCONN, a public, non-profit agency that serves the educational needs of schools, organizations, communities, and individuals of all ages in northeastern Connecticut. After the construction of a new building is completed in 2013, QMC will enroll approximately 225 students.
A licensed child-care center, Steppingstones, is located on the Danielson campus. Steppingstones is open to the public, but preference is given to QVCC staff and students. The center provides a quality program for preschool-aged children ages 3 to 5. In addition, the center offers an after school program for children up to 10 years of age and serves as an observation opportunity for students in child development classes. For more information, contact Steppingstones at 860-774-2548.
STRIDE is a unique, state-funded transitional support workforce development program operating within the Quinebaug Valley Community College’s Community Engagement Department. The STRIDE Program serves a targeted group of incarcerated men and women both pre-and post-release from York Correctional Institute in Niantic, Niantic Annex Correctional Institution in Niantic, Bridgeport Correctional Center in Bridgeport, Corrigan-Radgowski Correctional Center in Uncasville, and Willard-Cybulski Correctional Institution and Cybulski Community Reintegration Center in Enfield. The class curriculum and post-release services are collaboratively designed to assist the men and women in successfully re-entering the workforce upon release and to resume their parental roles. Eligibility of criteria is as follows: must be currently incarcerated at one of the participating STRIDE correctional facilities; must be a non-custodial parent of a child under the age of 25; is or has been a recipient of any CT state assistance program such as TFA, SAGA/LIA, HUSKY, SNAP; must be committed to becoming employed and plan to remain in the state of CT; must be able to make and keep scheduled appointments with STRIDE staff, both on a pre- and post-release basis.
STRIDE is designed to provide participants with job readiness, job search, job placement, and job retention skills and support that will promote access to higher paying, personally relevant jobs. Participants receive one-on-one counseling and group support as well as pre and post-release case management services. In addition, community transition plans address barriers and needs regarding housing, transportation, clothing and family reunification.
STRIDE participants have an 8%* recidivism rate compared to 47%* with no reentry program in place. The STRIDE Program is co-founder of the Windham County Reentry Council. Awards and accomplishments include: 2012 Bellwether Award Winner in Workforce Development Category, 2009 CT Alliance for Basic Human Needs (CABHN) Award for STRIDE’s tireless work on shaping the 2010-2011 state budget, Workforce development national finalist at Community College Futures Assembly 2007 Bellwether Awards, and Bronze Telly Award winner in 2007 for STRIDE video.
For additional information, contact Julie Scrapchansky, STRIDE program director, at 860-932-4146.
*Based on the 2011 Annual Recidivism Report from the State of Connecticut, Office of Policy & Management Criminal Justice Policy and Planning Division. **STRIDE recidivism rate based on all participating clients.
The Willimantic Center was established in 1986 in an effort to facilitate access to educational offerings to residents of the southwestern corner of QVCC’s service area, and was expanded in 2005. The Center houses classrooms, state-of-the-art computer labs, library, learning center, lounge, and offices. Located in downtown Willimantic, the Center offers credit and non-credit courses, English as a Second Language courses, job-focused training, customized training programs for local employers, learning support services, and career services.
In April 2000, the Board of Governors for Higher Education gave approval to offer more than 50 percent of coursework in four programs at the Willimantic Center: Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies, Business Administration, Business Office Technology.
For more information on Willimantic Center offerings, call 860-336-0900.