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Our History

Spokane Falls Community College is located in Spokane, Washington. It is situated above the Spokane River on a 113-acre site, with lush trees and expansive lawns. This secluded and unique setting is enhanced with views of distant scenery of neighboring Riverside State Park and the Centennial Trail.

All the words in the name, Spokane Falls Community College, have important meanings and are connected to the past and present. Spokane is the name given to one of many tribes of native people who have lived in this area for a very long time. Variously it means: People, People of the Sun, or The Place Where The People Of The Sun Live. Falls refers to the water falls on the Spokane River itself. They are located six miles upstream and in the center of the city. The more dramatic and dominant geology of this area was determined by huge powerful molten lava flows through gigantic fissures in the Columbian Plateau. This occurred between 6 and 17 million years ago. One of these flows resulted in the formation of the lower falls on the Spokane River. At these SFCC Clock Tower falls native people camped and caught salmon for hundreds of years. Spokane Falls also refers to the town of Spokane Falls, incorporated in 1881 along the banks of the river, which became the present day city of Spokane.

The community college opened in 1967 and shortly thereafter was proudly given the name, Spokane Falls. The word Community, not only refers to the people in this region of the state which we serve, but also to the community of learners attending the college, along with its faculty and staff. The word College conveys a meaning closely related to this idea. It comes from the Latin collegium, meaning a society. In times past this was a society of scholars gathered together for the purpose of doing scholarship and teaching. Today we like to think of the college in terms of a learning community; a place where students, faculty, and staff come together to participate in the experience of learning.

Serving Diverse Needs and Populations

Students Under Some Trees For more than a decade and a half, the college has emphasized international education: attracting students from other countries, encouraging students to study and work abroad, providing opportunities for faculty to have international experiences, and infusing the college curriculum with international values and global knowledge. In addition, the college enrolls students of all ages, students who are single parents, and students who are trying to get a fresh start on life. Moreover, many students return to upgrade their job-entry skills or to position themselves for job promotions. Still others view the college as an inexpensive opportunity to explore different fields in order to choose the right career.

Taken together, the environment, the people, the programs, and the services combine to make Spokane Falls Community College a college of choice for students who desire a quality education at a reasonable cost.


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