BBCC Celebrates 50th Anniversary with Events and Alumni Outreach

For Immediate Release
December 1, 2011
Contact: Doug Sly,
(509) 793-2004
BBCC Celebrates 50th anniversary with events and alumni outreach

Big Bend Community College is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2012 with special events, alumni outreach, and recognition.

“We are asking alumni to send us their stories, to tell us how their lives changed because Big Bend was there when they needed it,” said BBCC President Bill Bonaudi.

“Celebrating our Past, Investing in our Future,” is the theme for BBCC’s 50th year. It is important to recognize and celebrate student success and the history of the college, Bonaudi said .

BBCC has unveiled a 50th Anniversary website at Alumni and friends of the college can share their stories, post on BBCC’s Facebook page and keep track of upcoming events on this portal. Over time BBCC wants to develop a historic virtual exhibit including a timeline, interesting facts, and a photo gallery.

A 50th anniversary logo has been designed, and is already being used on publications and at special events. The BBCC Foundation minted a coin to be presented to friends and supporters of the college during the anniversary year.

One of the premier events celebrating college’s 50th year will be the President’s Ball on March 3, 2012. The event features a gourmet dinner, wine tasting, recognition of college friends, and dancing to a live band. The President’s Ball this year replaces Winter Serenade.

BBCC retirees will be invited to the Classified Staff Awards Luncheon in January so they can provide more history. Other events with the anniversary theme will be the President’s State of the College Address in May, Cellarbration! For Education in May, and Commencement in June.

“We have been going through photo archives, and thought it would be a great idea to have photo ID parties so alumni and retirees can help us reconnect to the college’s past,” said Doug Sly, BBCC Foundation Director.

The college’s 50th commencement is more than a chance to honor the class of 2012. It is an opportunity for everyone who is part of the BBCC family to celebrate the accomplishments of our graduates of the last 50 years, Sly said.

Thousands of people visit BBCC and use its facilities for events each year. These visitors provide even more opportunities for outreach and sharing in the celebration.

Established in 1962, BBCC serves a 4,600-square-mile rural service district including all of Grant and Adams counties and part of Lincoln County. The College serves 15 primary communities in this area.

A sample of BBCC facts from the past:

  • There were 20 “Charter Graduates” in the first graduating class of BBCC in 1963.
  • Gov. Albert Rosellini gave the dedication address for Big Bend Community College on April 5, 1964.
  • The price of coffee in the student union building was increased from a nickel to a dime in 1964 because students were leaving such a mess. It was lowered to a nickel again after students agreed to clean up after themselves.
  • Enrollment at BBCC dropped 30 percent in 1966 following closure of Larson Air Force Base.
  • In 1967, BBCC men played on the tennis team and women played on the badminton team.
  • The Rifle Pistol Club was one of the first clubs formed at BBCC in 1963 and had three female members.
    Tuition for 18 credits at BBCC cost $83 per quarter in 1976. In 2012, tuition is more than $100 per credit.
  • In 2011, employees in the “Big Bend Family” include 36 who have worked for the college more than 20 years, 43 BBCC alumni, and 30 military veterans. BBCC’s Campus 2011

Group of Charter Graduates

Gov Rosollini at Charter Graduation Celebration

Campus Aerial View


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