Aug. 23, 2004
A record number of students start class today for the fall semester at the Lancaster Campus of HACC, Central Pennsylvania's Community College. HACC's enrollment currently stands at more than 15,400 students - an increase of about 6.6% over last fall.

At the Lancaster Campus, students will find the $22 million expansion project that doubles the campus completed, with a brand new East building, significantly enlarged D&E Library Learning Center and expanded cafeteria.

The Lancaster Campus of HACC is showing the most dramatic growth of any of HACC's campuses including those in Harrisburg, Lebanon and Gettysburg.

The Lancaster campus expects roughly 4,000 students starting classes Aug. 23, an increase of more than 8 percent over last year. Students may enroll, however, up to Aug. 30; those enrolling in evening or weekend classes can enroll until Sept. 10.

"Our expansion is a result of the tremendous support we received from the Lancaster community enrolling in record numbers," said Brad Wolf, dean of academic affairs at the Lancaster Campus. "I think our focus on quality education opportunities at an affordable price has worked well for the community," said Wolf, acknowledging that about 80 percent of HACC graduates stay within Lancaster County.

Both health-related and construction fields have driven the recent growth spurt, and HACC has expanded programming for both.

"We've pushed the timeline a little bit, constructing the East building about two years ahead of schedule," said Wolf. "With the new building can offer very flexible class schedules to meet the needs of all our students. We are now in a position to serve up to 7000 students with the new addition."

The new East building on the Lancaster Campus contains an allied health suite including radiology technology room with a darkroom for the new radiology program, two general biology labs and a microbiology lab, and 45 classrooms all with Internet access.

Students will have access to four new computer labs, including one equipped with Microsoft A+ certification technology. A workforce and economic development suite offers an on-site area for executive training.

A new lecture hall/multipurpose room is equipped with an electronic folding stage and seating for 140. The art classroom features public areas for displaying artwork. The new building also houses a soundproof music room, language lab and study areas.

The expanded campus will allow the growth of the popular health career programs, including the RN and LPN nursing curriculums, as well as the other 80 programs that can be completed in their entirety at the Lancaster Campus.

The campus graduated its first class of registered nurses in May 2003 and began a practical nursing program in January 2004. Other new associate's degrees were added last fall, including radiologic technology and building construction technology. The college has dedicated one computer lab to AutoCAD, an engineering software program, for construction students.

Total enrollment for all HACC campuses last fall was up 23 percent over the previous year, the second straight year of record enrollments. In 2004, HACC served some 15,000 credit students and 50,000 non-credit students from throughout HACC's 10-county service area and beyond.

More students also are taking a combination of in-class and on-line courses, and HACC this fall has a new Virtual Campus with its own dean. Enrollment figures for on-line students are being pulled from campus enrollment numbers for the first time.

The Harrisburg Campus of HACC has the first new construction underway in many years, and the $12 million Select Medical Health Education Pavilion will be completed by fall 2005.

The Harrisburg Campus continues to be the largest campus, with enrollments of nearly 8900 students this fall.

More than 1200 students are registered for the fall semester at the Gettysburg Campus of HACC, which required the addition of 89 new parking spaces created between the AdamsCounty National Bank and the campus. That campus had already expanded in recent years to accommodate its growing nursing program.

The Lebanon Campus is expected to maintain its enrollment numbers, having enrolled more than 1,000 students for the first time last fall.

Additionally, there's a strong core of 600 students taking classes at HACC's York Center, which is fast becoming HACC's fifth campus.

In addition to its four campus locations and York Center, HACC offers classes at the Community Center for Technology and the Arts in downtown Harrisburg, HACC Penn Center in uptown Harrisburg and many locations around the region, including high schools, Fort Indiantown Gap, the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle and others.

As HACC enters its 40th anniversary year, it is recognized as one of the nation's premier community colleges, as well as Pennsylvania's first.

HACC offers more than 120 different certificate, diploma and associate degree options and serves 50,000 non-credit students from HACC's 10-county service areas and beyond. Its open enrollment policy ensures that any student with a high school diploma or GED can enroll in classes.

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