FTCC enjoys a rich history that began as a result of a vision shared by concerned business leaders in Cumberland County who recognized the need for a local institution to provide job training for area industries and educational opportunities for high school graduates and adult learners. From that vision and through the perseverance of those leaders, the Fayetteville Area Industrial Education Center (IEC) was established in 1961. In 1963, the North Carolina General Assembly passed a bill creating the statewide Community College System, and from this opportunity in that same year, the Fayetteville Area Industrial Education Center became known as Fayetteville Technical Institute (FTI). In January 1988, the name of the college changed to Fayetteville Technical Community College to broaden and enhance the public image of technical and vocational postsecondary education.
FTCC has enjoyed much success and celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2011 under the leadership of its current President, Dr. J. Larry Keen. From its humble beginnings with two buildings (Lafayette Hall and Horace Sisk) to its current 130-acre Fayetteville campus plus outlying educational centers, FTCC has grown not only in numbers of buildings and acreage but also in student enrollment. In addition to the central Fayetteville campus, FTCC offers students the option of being served by the Spring Lake campus (2004), the Fort Bragg Center (which offers convenient access to classes for military students) (1974), the Horticulture Educational Center (2006), and the Collision Repair and Refinishing Technology Center (2015). The General Classroom Building was completed in 2012 to allow expansion of student support services. The General Classroom Building is also home to the All American Veterans Center established in 2014. FTCC is a proud partner with the North Carolina Military Business Center, whose headquarters is housed at the Fayetteville campus.
A new program with Caliber Collision, Changing Lanes, held its first graduation in 2017 through Transition Tech, a program to help soldiers transitioning from military service to civilian life. The Changing Lanes program is the first in the country to provide active duty service members with training and employment opportunities in the collision repair industry prior to their transition from the military. Also In 2017, FTCC established the FTCC Educational Center in downtown Fayetteville (225 B Street) where Adult Basic Education and other Corporate and Continuing Education programs and classes are held. FTCC also established the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship inside the General Classroom Building, offering the Six Steps to Success program to assist entrepreneurs with business startup process strategies. The Horticulture Educational Center was re-named as the Wesley A. Meredith Horticulture Educational Center. Meredith, an avid supporter of North Carolina’s community colleges, is an FTCC graduate of the Horticulture Technology program who succeeded in becoming an entrepreneur in addition to representing North Carolina’s 19th Cumberland County District as Senator.
FTCC serves approximately 37,000 students annually through its various Curriculum and Corporate & Continuing Education opportunities. What began as a vision over fifty years ago evolved into what is perceived by many as the pillar of the community in Cumberland County. Through the school’s motto, education for life, FTCC offers more than value and a good education; it offers hope to all who seek education in response to the changing demands often experienced throughout life. More detailed, chronological information about the history of FTCC can be found in the Board of Trustees Orientation Manual.
FTCC is recognized as a Military-Friendly School®. As part of its mission to plan and apply all operations with sustainability at the forefront, FTCC is recognized by Sustainable Sandhill’s of North Carolina as the first local college to be certified as green. FTCC is designated as a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) jobs approved college by Victory Media, creator of STEM Job resources for the second consecutive year. For the fourth consecutive year, FTCC is ranked 2nd in the nation by Military Times for Best for Vets: Career & Technical Colleges in 2016. In 2015, FTCC was ranked by Community College Week Magazine as 4th in the nation with an enrollment growth of 7.2% in the segment of 10,000 or more students and ranked 4th in the nation by the Digital Community Colleges Survey recognizing innovative uses of technology to achieve a first-rate student learning environment. FTCC is recognized as a top school for best practices in military and veteran education by Military Advanced Education’s (MAE) Guide to Colleges and Universities.
For a more complete history of FTCC, view the FTCC Fact Book