Greetings and Welcome to Grays Harbor College!
You will notice a different look to our GHC logo. This September, right around when Fall Quarter starts, we will be inviting you to a birthday bash, honoring one of Washington’s oldest two-year colleges – we will proudly be celebrating GHC’s 90th birthday! Founded by Aberdeen city fathers in 1930, GHC was originally called Grays Harbor Business College; the ‘Business’ was soon dropped as the curriculum expanded and students asked for more academically challenging work.
Alumni will tell about tough times when money was tight for families and likewise for the College. It was common for College faculty to be paid weekly salaries with garden produce, fresh eggs, chickens and even livestock. Other alums remember waking up very early, before their classmates arrived on campus. Those early-risers would chop wood and stoke the furnace before classes convened for the day, in exchange for tuition. Now we have many workstudy students, helping in various ways but they no longer chop wood.
GHC changed locations three times before settling on the current beautifully wooded site in South Aberdeen. Expansion moves created new courses and programs as the College responded to the community, but now that service district serves both Grays Harbor and Pacific counties. The College is constantly changing, showing flexibility, definitely recognizing new teaching and learning styles.
Case in point: Toward the end of last Winter Quarter, our flexibility and innovation was tested by COVID-19. Our students worried about grades, faculty expressed concern about connecting with students, and we were all worried about keeping each other healthy and safe. Once the campus closed and was totally sanitized, our talented faculty created epic lessons plans, and classes reconvened quickly. Learning took on a different look, however, as students all became remote learners. But it was the same high-quality instruction our students expect when they enroll at GHC. And the same courteous services that our students and community depend on.
Our Aberdeen founders believed in the importance of education and how it can change a community; and every president and trustee since 1930 has kept that same promise to students. For the last 89 years , GHC has pledged to continue offering the very best education experience. We plan continue our promise for the next 90 and 90 after that.
Happy Birthday, GHC!
Dr. James Minkler,