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Arapahoe Community College (ACC) is a public community college in Littleton, Colorado. It was founded in 1965 as the first community college to open in the Denver area.[1][2]

Arapahoe Community College
TypePublic community college
PresidentDiana M. Doyle
Students20,000 (annually)

39°36′30″N 105°01′11″W / 39.6084°N 105.0196°W / 39.6084; -105.0196Coordinates: 39°36′30″N 105°01′11″W / 39.6084°N 105.0196°W / 39.6084; -105.0196
CampusUrban / rural
ColorsPurple and White
Arapahoe Community College.svg


The college began after a grass-roots movement by Littleton residents, led by Littleton activist Virginia Baker,[1] to provide post-high school education in the area.[2] Arapahoe Junior College began with 550 students.

After some years of independent operation, ACC joined the Colorado Community College System, comprising 13 institutions. In 2013, Frank Lee Earley (one of the founding faculty members) self-published an illustrated memoir, "The View From the Fourth Floor: A Personal History of Arapahoe Community College, 1965–2005",[3] which gives a first-person account of the founding and growth of the college.

In 2013, Frank Lee Earley (one of the founding faculty members) self-published an illustrated memoir, The View From the Fourth Floor: A Personal History of Arapahoe Community College, 1965–2005.[3]

In January 2017, the college announced plans to construct a $40 million campus in the Meadows community of Castle Rock, Colorado. The campus was planned to be a collaborative project between ACC, Colorado State University, and Douglas County School District.[4] Construction on the campus broke ground on May 21, 2018 and will open August 16, 2019. [5]


ACC serves over 21,000 credit and non-credit students yearly across its three campuses in the southern portion of the Greater Denver Metropolitan area:

Arapahoe Community College serves the southern portion of the Greater Denver Metropolitan area with three campuses:

  • The main campus, at 5900 South Santa Fe Drive, Littleton, CO, 80120
  • Parker Campus, at 15653 Brookstone Drive, Parker, CO 80134
  • Castle Rock Campus, at 4700 Castleton Way, Castle Rock, CO 80109

ACC is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. It has an open-door admissions policy as well as a "concurrent enrollment" program for high school students, allowing such students to earn college credits while still enrolled in high school. In the 2014–2015 academic year, high school students accounted for about a quarter of ACC's total enrollment.[6]

The college offers over 90 degree and certificate programs. In addition to its traditional classroom learning environment, ACC has over 200 courses available online. These classes, which include classes such as accounting, mathematics and history, can be used to count towards an associate degree. ACC uses the online learning management system Desire2Learn as the platform for online classes.[6]


Arapahoe Community College's annual literary magazine, Progenitor, won the American Scholastic Press Association's annual magazine competition with First Place with Special Merit in 2014 and 2015. The publication also won an award for excellence from the University & College Designers Association (UCDA) in 2015.[7] In 2012, the magazine was a finalist for the Associated Press Pacemaker Magazine Award[8] and won first place in the American Scholastic Press Association (ASPA) annual magazine competition.[9]

In 2011, ACC's Equality Club won the New Group Award in the first annual Out in the Silence Award for Youth Activism.[10]

Grants and endowmentsEdit

ACC is one of six community colleges with a Great Books Program[11] approved by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education. Participants in the program receive a certificate that is recognized by admission councils at many 4-year colleges and universities.[11]

In June, 2015, ACC earned a $2.3 million workforce training grant to support its Health Information Technology program (HIT), one of 71 such grants distributed nationwide.[12]

Notable peopleEdit

Notable facultyEdit


  1. ^ a b "Arapahoe Community College: A look at the early days". Douglas County News-Press. Douglas County, CO. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  2. ^ a b "Happy 50 birthday to ACC". Littleton Independent. Littleton, CO. 8 September 2014. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  3. ^ a b "New Publications in 2013". Center for Colorado & the West at Auraria Library. Archived from the original on 24 November 2014. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  4. ^ "Higher-education campus finds home in Castle Rock – Colorado Community Media". Colorado Community Media. Retrieved 13 January 2017.
  5. ^ "Castle Rock Collaboration Campus groundbreaking approach to higher education – SOURCE". SOURCE. 4 June 2018. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
  6. ^ a b "Fast Facts". Arapahoe Community College. Archived from the original on 18 July 2015. Retrieved 5 July 2015.
  7. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 2016-01-08.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ "Honors & Awards" (PDF). Community College Week: VOLUME 25, No. 4. 1 October 2012. Retrieved 15 March 2017.
  9. ^ "ACC's Progenitor earns top honor from ASPA | Colorado Career and Technical Education Newswire". Retrieved 15 March 2017.
  10. ^ Wilson, Dean Hamer and Joe (10 December 2011). "Winners of the First Annual 'Out in the Silence' Award for Youth Activism Announced". Huffington Post. Retrieved 15 March 2017.
  11. ^ a b "Great Books Program". Arapahoe Community College. Retrieved July 5, 2015.
  12. ^ "ACC earns tech grant". Littleton Independent. Littleton CO. 12 June 2014. Retrieved 5 July 2015.

External linksEdit