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Introduction - History of College

Catalog and Student Handbook

Germanna Community College takes its name from a group of settlers at Germanna Ford on the Rapidan, where in 1714, Governor Alexander Spotswood established a frontier fort and settlement for the German miners and their families.

In 1956, descendants of the original settlers at Germanna Ford organized the Memorial Foundation of Germanna Colonies in Virginia, Inc. In 1966, the Virginia legislature created a community college system. A site selection committee recommended that the College be located in the center of its service region. In 1969, the Memorial Foundation of Germanna Colonies donated 100 acres of property along the Rapidan to the state for a community college. The College Board unanimously chose the name Germanna Community College to recognize the gift and the history associated with it.

Germanna held its first classes on October 13, 1970, in its partially completed building.

The opening of the Fredericksburg Area Campus in January, 1997 was a major undertaking for the College. The 70-acre site, donated by the John T. Hazel Family, was selected by the Germanna Board on September 12, 1989. State funding for Phase I was acquired mainly through the efforts of Delegate V. Earl Dickinson for whom the first building is named. Additional support was received from the local governments in the Germanna service region and from private donations.

Phase II, The Workforce Development and Technology Center, opened in October 2004.

On September 9, 1998, the College’s Educational Foundation received its largest single gift to date: 100 acres of land in Culpeper. The land was generously donated by Rose Bente Lee, Kaye and Marie Andrus, Nicholas and Flora Tomasetti, and Philip and Susan DeSiato. The Joseph R. Daniel Technology Center opened in 2006.

In July 2009, Germanna opened a fourth facility with the support of the Stafford Economic Development Authority. Germanna’s Stafford County Center has served over 1,000 students since opening and enrollment continues to increase.

The Science and Engineering Building and Information Commons opened in May 2012. This is the Fredericksburg Area Campuses third building and the facility provides laboratories, instructional resources, student services and more. Additionally Germanna opened a parking garage on this campus in August 2012.

Finally, in September 2012, the College opened a new Automotive Center with the help of a Stafford EDA award of $75,000 towards the construction of the facility. In addition to serving area residents, the facility supports local high schools with instructional opportunities and facilities.