St. Philip’s College: A Comprehensive Public Community College Transforming Students into Industry Experts

Founded in 1898, St. Philip’s College, empowers its diverse student population through educational achievement and career readiness. It is committed towards building individual and collective character through various values: Student’s First, Respect for All, Community Engaged, Collaboration, Can-Do-Spirit and Data-Informed.

St. Philip’s College is among the oldest and the most diverse community colleges in the United States of America. It is a comprehensive, multi-campus institution dedicated to meeting the educational needs of San Antonio’s growing community. Being the only college in the U.S. with the distinct dual designation as a Historically Black College and Hispanic Serving Institution, SPC has an enrollment of 13,000 students including dual credit students, early college high schoolers, students interested in gaining skills that lead to or enhance careers, and students seeking courses that transfer to university degrees. The college has agreements with area universities to ease the transition for university-bound students.

Establishing Student Success and Academic Excellence for more than a Century

Since 1898, SPC has proven itself as a student-centered institution with a nurturing environment. With a vision to be the best in the nation in Student Success and Performance Excellence, St. Philip’s College has created an environment that fosters excellence in academic and technical achievement while expanding its commitment to opportunity and access. It stands as a vital facet of the community, responding to the needs of a population rich in ethnic, cultural and socio-economic diversity.

The main campus of the college is located three miles east of downtown San Antonio. In addition to its academic courses, its health professions, hospitality, automotive technology, and cybersecurity/IT programs are housed at the MLK Campus. SPC Southwest Campus is located at the old Kelly Air Force Base. In addition to academic courses, this campus hosts aircraft technology, power generation and alternative energy, construction technology and welding programs. The college also has a presence at Joint Base San Antonio (JBSA) Lackland, Randolph and Fort Sam Houston, in support of Military City USA.

The Extraordinary Study Options which make St. Philip’s College a Successful One

The College offers numerous extraordinary curriculum options which make it a choice ahead of others for students. The nursing students of SPC can pursue a vocational nursing certificate or an Associate Degree in Nursing. The latter gives students choices about transferring to a university to earn a higher degree or joining the workforce. Its LVN to RN Mobility Programs gives working vocational nurses and former military nurses a pathway to becoming registered nurses. This increases job opportunities and salaries and also helps fill a nationwide demand for registered nurses. SPC has other health-career programs including surgical technology, sonography, respiratory technology, biomedical engineering, vision care, and physical therapy.

Computer security is a rapidly growing industry giving way to incredibly diverse fields and the college feels that as technologies continue to pervade society, it is critical that all the information it carries is protected. So, recently, the college has been affirmed as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense: Two-Year Education by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. The students of SPC enjoy the benefit of getting study options like cyber first response, Android app development, and healthcare technology management. Apart from its highly recognized academic curricula, the school also hosts various lectures, festivals and club sports.

About the Specialty of the College’s Locality

The city in which the college is located, San Antonio, is known for hosting about 34 million visitors every year. The “birthplace of Tex-Mex,” San Antonio’s art, food and culture are vibrant and unique. The city is home to four theme parks and two Smithsonian-affiliate museums. Pro sports include NBA, AHL, NCAA and MiLB teams and more than 50 golf courses. Manufacturing, IT, healthcare, bioscience and tourism are San Antonio’s largest industries. SPC’s programs rely on input from industry leaders to ensure that their graduates enter the workforce with high-level skills to match regional needs. SPC’s Tourism, Hospitality, and Culinary Arts (THCA) programs prepare students for careers in industries that are vital to San Antonio’s economy. Tourism has an estimated $4 billion impact on the city.

The Pride of St. Philip’s College

Artemisia Bowden led the institution for 52 years. She was a pillar in the community and her legacy is evident all over San Antonio, at SPC Bowden Building, Bowden Elementary School and UIW Bowden Eye Care and Health Center. In the year 2015, 45 years after her death, Saint Bowden was named as holy woman by the Episcopal Church.

About the President

Dr. Adena Williams Loston serves as the 14th President of the college and helps students explore the endless possibilities for expanding their vision and dreams, discover new career options and pursue their passion for personal growth and development. Prior to SPC, Dr. Loston has served in various leadership roles in numerous organizations including NASA. She has served in administrative educational capacities for more than 39 years.

Dr. Loston has a rich academic background with a Bachelor of Science degree from Alcorn State University, and Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from Bowling Green State University. She has also attended the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University, Oxford Roundtable at Oxford University and the Wharton School of Business. She has been widely recognized and awarded for her extraordinary contributions to society.

“Words of Trust”

The cultural diversity here and the age groups are wonderful. I have high school classmates who help me set my phone up and I can laugh with 65-year old students and with the veterans’ community,” said Student Government Association President Angelia Jacobs who decided to return to college after a 23-year military career.

Once I did my research, I saw that San Antonio is really big in manufacturing and I would have a better chance – once I graduate – with getting a job,” said Cesar Mendez, who was featured on PBS Newshour as one of 500 who lost their jobs at a manufacturing plant. Mendez returned to college to upgrade his skills.

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