Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College was forged from the needs of America. Established to train Armed Forces personnel, the College has grown and evolved to be a leader in education and workforce training in south central Kentucky.
The College was originally located on Russellville Road near the present site of the University Center on the Western Kentucky University campus, and was named the Western Trade School.
It was built in 1939 under the joint sponsorhip of the National Youth Administration and Western Kentucky State Teacher's College. It operated as a N.Y.A. training facility, and was used to train industrial workers and Armed Services personnel for the duration of World War II.
At the end of the war, the Federal Government released the facility to the State Department of Education, Bureau of Vocational Education and Western Teachers College to be operated as an area trade school. The first coordinator of the school was Mr. Charles V. Youmans. When Mr. Youmans left to teach at the University of Kentucky in 1947, he was replaced by Mr. W. E. Ray. In 1955, Mr. Ray was employed in private industry, and Mr. Phillip Hampton became school principal.
In the years that followed, the curriculum offerings were expanded and enrollment steadily increased.
The possibility of establishing the Glasgow School for Practical Nurses became a reality in 1956 when the Kentucky Board of Nursing granted developmental approval.
Due to a nursing shortage, the school was needed in the area. The oversight of the school was conducted by directors including; Mr. Thomas Layton, Executive Director of the State Tuberculosis Hospital Commission; Mr. William Wycoff Black, Administrator of the State Tuberculosis Hospital; Dr. C. C. Howard, representing the medical profession; Mr. Richard Mereweather, Administrator of Western State Hospital; and Mr. Philip Hampton, Director of the Western Area Vocational School. The board employed Ms. Julie Baeem, Mrs. Ruth Thomas, and Mrs. Rebecca Forrest to establish curriculum, set policy and recruit students. They were assisted by Mrs. Ann Rodgers, Director of Nursing at T.J. Samson Community Hospital, as a part-time instructor and assisted in planning the clinical experiences provided at the hospital.
The first class of 35 students was admitted January 30, 1957, representing thirteen (13) Kentucky counties. On February 1, 1957, the Bureau of Vocational Education assumed control of the school.
Over the years the school's name has changed, depending upon which department of state government had control over the school. The school was known as The Glasgow School for Practical Nurses from 1957 until about 1992. From 1992-1996, the school was called the Glasgow School for Health Occupations, reflecting the school's expansion of programs to include more than just Practical Nursing courses. For two years, 1996-1998, the school was named Glasgow Health Technology Center.
In 1962, the Kentucky General Assembly passed a bill which brought this school and nine other area vocational schools in the state under direct state control. On July 1 of that year, the school became a separate agency, independent of Western Kentucky University, even though it was renamed the Western Area Vocational School.
In 1968, the school moved from the Western Kentucky University campus to its present location on Loop Drive, and the name was changed to Bowling Green Area Vocational School. Land for the new Location was acquired by the Civic Educational Foundation, an arm of the Bowling Green-Warren County Chamber of Commerce. Approximately $30,000 in contributions from businesses and industries in the area was used to buy the 15-acre tract where Buildings A through F are located. An adjoining 15-acre tract was later purchased by the state for future expansions.
In 1972 the school gained accreditation status with the Council on Occupational Education.
The name of the school was changed again in 1973 to Bowling Green State Vocational Technical School. In 1979, two additional buildings were constructed and an extended campus to train students of the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA) named the Barren River Skill Center became an active part of the school directed by Mr. Robert Gary.
In 1978 Mr. Robert Bierman became school principal upon the retirement of Mr. Phillip Hampton.
In 1982, the addition of the final two buildings completed the immediate planned complex, and brought the total available training space to approximately 177,000 square feet. It also represents a total complex cost of approximately $6,100,000 in buildings and over $3,500,000 in equipment and supplies. There were over 25 different training programs with approximately 800 students enrolled. The school served both high school and adult students. Evening, part-time, and upgrade classes were offered to adult students.
In 1987, Mr. Donald R. Williams was appointed principal of the school and remained principal until 1998.
In 1988, the school held the first organized graduation ceremony.
In 1990, Bowling Green State Technical School became part of the newly formed Kentucky Workforce Development Cabinet. The school served adults, as well as, high school students from Warren, Edmonson, and Butler Counties.
Building B, C, and F were renovated and the assessment center was implemented as well as the industrial maintenance program.
The new Kentucky Advanced Technology Center opened to offer training in Computer Repair and Automated Systems in 1993. Mr. Ken Votler was appointed director and was succeeded by Dr. Jack Thomas in 1995.
In 1994, State-operated technical schools began using new names to recognize their inclusion in the Workforce Development Cabinet and in Kentucky TECH. The school was renamed the Bowling Green Regional Technology Center.
In July of 1997, the Kentucky Community and Technical College System was formed by House Bill 1 in the State Legislature. This bill brought together all the postsecondary technical schools and the former University of Kentucky Community Colleges into one system.
Bowling Green Regional Technology Center became Bowling Green Technical College. Dr. Jack Thomas became the first President of the four campuses that comprised Bowling Green Technical College. In 1999, the first Board of Directors of the College was established and in 2000 the Adult Learning Center opened.
The dedication of the new South Regional Postsecondary Education Center in Glasgow, Kentucky took place on January 25, 2002, ushering in the dawn of a new day for educational opportunities and access in that part of the region. The $9 million facility houses the Glasgow Technology Campus of Bowling Green Technical College, as well as, Western Kentucky University's Glasgow Community College Campus.
In 2003, the College enbarked on the first major gifts campaign as part of KCTCS "Fulfilling the Promise" campaign.
On April 21, 2005, Dr. Nathan Hodges was appointed President of the Bowling Green Technical College.
On June 12, 2006, the College broke ground for a new 68,000 square foot facility in Franklin, KY that was slated to open in early 2008.
On August 25, 2006, Bowling Green Technical College celebrated the opening of the Transpark Center, a 31,500 sq. ft. facility offering multi-skilled Maintenance, Tool & Die, and Business and Industry Training.
A Teaching and Learning Center was implemented on the Main Campus.
On September 3, 2008, the Franklin-Simpson Center opened its doors to provide educational opportunities for business and industry training, as well as, educational opportunities to residents of the area.
In June 2008, the Bowling Green Technical College Foundation was recognized as the fundraising arm of the College.
In June 2009 the College gained accreditation status with Commission on Colleges, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
In 2009 the College ranked fastest growing two-year college in enrollment growth by Community College Week, and ranked 24th in the nation among two-year colleges in charitable contributions.
The first class of Practical Nursing students were enrolled at the Main Campus in fall 2008.
New classroom space and additional parking was constructed at the Glasgow Health Campus, and the College implemented a new "On-Track" program designed to give high school students a head-start on college.
The College also joined KCTCS in a comprehensive Advocacy Campaign to make state legislators aware of the life-changing services that our College provides to the citizens of the Commonwealth.
In 2010, the College achieved membership status in Commission on Colleges Southern Association of Colleges and Schools as a comprehensive community and technical college to offer the Associate in Arts and Associate in Science Degrees.
The College then expanded program offerings to include Associate in Arts and Associate in Science Degrees, expanding the opportunities for student transfer to four-year colleges and universitites.
The College also Implemented a decelopmental Math redesign initiative (emporium).
Additional property was purchased on Loop Drive to expand facilities and parking for students.
In conjunction with the State Fire Commission, the College completed the Fire and Rescue Training building contructed on the Main Campus.
The College was also able to establish a Security Force for the protection of our students and College family.
In 2011, the College ranked first in degree completion rates among all KCTCS colleges and was recognized in the top 6% nationally in community college degree completion rates.
The College was also nationally recongnized for setting "High Expectations" for our students, state leader in minority persistence, and ranked in the top 20% nationally for two-year college freshman persistence.
In 2011, a Joint Admissions Agreement was signed with the College and Western Kentucky University to allow students to be enrolled simultaneously at both institutions giving them access to a full range of services.
The College also added approximately 200 parking spaces to the Main Campus.
In December 2012, the College sought to establish a new name that both reflected the expanded mission of the college as a comprehensive college and represented the regional outreach and services offered to the region. The College name was changed to Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College.
In 2012, the College opened a new FANUC Certified Education Robotic Training Center in a partnership with General Motors to train their employees that will be assembling the new "Next Generation" Corvette.
A major renovation of the Main Campus took place with the consturction of a new Campus Courtyard, Entranceways, and new pavilion.
On July 1, 2013, Dr. Phillip Neal began his tenure as President of Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College as Dr. Nathan Hodges, past President of Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College (SKYCTC), passed the mantle of leadership to Dr. Neal.
Hodges served as President fo the former Bowling Green Technical College since July 2005.
Dr. Neal was named the future President of Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College by Dr. Michael B. McCall, President of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System, and was unanimously recommended by the SKYCTC Board of Directors.