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Gila County Community College District commemorates 20 years


Last Thursday in Globe, the Gila County Provisional Community College District celebrated its 20th anniversary with a discussion of the district’s history and future and tours of the Eastern Arizona College Gila Pueblo Campus, followed by an on-campus dinner.

It was 20 years ago this month – March 4, 2003 – that articles of incorporation were filed for the district, but its origins stretch further back; to 2002, when the district was formed by a voter-approved tax levy. Today the district, which contracts with Eastern Arizona College for educational services, welcomes students at the Gila Pueblo Campus, Payson Campus, Globe-Miami Regional Training Center and Hayden Wellness Center. In 2022, with Gila County’s support, the district hired its first interim college president, Dr. Janice Lawhorn; she had served from 2020 to 2022 as senior dean for the Gila Pueblo and Payson campuses.

Along with degrees and certificates from EAC, the district offers dual enrollment, partnering with the Cobre Valley Institute of Technology, Northern Arizona Vocational Institute of Technology and high schools throughout  Gila County as well as Superior. The district and its educational mission are funded through property taxes, state funding, tuition and fees, and private donations and grants.

The district is also looking ahead, taking such steps toward independence as building a sustainable infrastructure, gaining regional accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission and reaching fully organized status with the State of Arizona.