Housatonic Community College, through a collaborative, learner-centered, technology-rich and stimulating educational environment, empowers all individuals to develop to their full potential as lifelong learners. As a knowledgeable and dedicated faculty and staff, we inspire students to contribute responsibly to our dynamic regional and global society.
Housatonic Community College is located in Bridgeport, Connecticut's largest city, and serves an eleven-town area in Southwestern Connecticut. A member of Connecticut State Colleges & Universities, the college opened its doors in 1966 as a branch of Norwalk Community College and became independent in 1967. In 1997 HCC moved to its present site in downtown Bridgeport. In 2008 Beacon Hall became the second building on the HCC campus. The Housatonic Museum of Art and Sculpture Garden are part of the teaching mission of the college. With nearly 4000 works in the collection, and over 1700 displayed throughout the building, the Museum offers lectures, demonstrations, and changing exhibitions in the Burt Chernow Galleries.
Housatonic is accredited by the New England Commission on Higher Education (NECHE) and the Connecticut Board of Regents for Higher Education. It is a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI), a Minority-Serving Institution (MSI), and a Primarily Undergraduate Institution (PUI).
In response to community and student needs, Housatonic offers associate degree programs in preparation for transfer to four-year institutions, as well as occupationally-oriented associate degree and certificate programs. Short-term, non-credit courses, seminars and workshops, as well as targeted student services help meet community and personal enrichment needs. These programs prepare students for employment, and advancement in business, industry, manufacturing, health services, fine arts, theater, digital media, early childhood education, natural sciences, computer arts and information systems, and human services. The college also assists local businesses and institutions to train and update the skills of their workers.
HCC has articulation and transfer agreements with over 30 public and private in-state and out of state four-year institutions and is currently developing agreements with several prominent HBCUs with exemplary records. HCC was rated 30th out 41 public colleges in Connecticut by Intelligent.com in 2021 and among the top 100 producers of associate degrees by Diverse: Issues in Higher Education.
The total enrollment of students at HCC exceeds 3,500 annually; typically about 70% are enrolled part-time. In 2001, nearly two-thirds of the students were female, 34.7% Latinx/Hispanic and 29.5% African American. The Latinx/Hispanic student population has increased from 25% of HCC’s enrollment ten years ago to the largest group on campus today.
The student body reflects the diversity of the service region. Changes in student and educational goals, economic diversity, and industry needs are responded to with flexibility and responsible adjustment in programs and services. A majority of Housatonic’s population are marginalized and comprised of low-income, first-generation college students, majority from the greater Bridgeport CT area, who manage multiple responsibilities including one or more jobs and caring for their children while pursuing their education. For a large number of HCC students, English is a second language, and currently, the College’s international student population under the student visa program represents 18 different countries of origin. Due to the many responsibilities outside of school, students can take as long as six years to earn an Associate’s degree. About 400 HCC students per semester are registered with Disabilities Support Services.