Catawba Valley Community College is an innovative, comprehensive community college that fosters and promotes a multitude of learning experiences, enabling and empowering its students, faculty, staff, and stakeholders to identify and to serve higher purposes in their lives and in their communities.
College Core Values
- Student Success
- Excellence in Teaching and Lifelong Learning
- Economic and Workforce Development
- Quality Stakeholder Engagement
- Global Perspectives
- Embracing Diversity
- Integrity and Ethics
The vision of Catawba Valley Community College is to be validated and recognized in the achievement of its mission as the statewide, regional, and national standard of excellence for programs, services, and facilities.
Through the concerted efforts of concerned and united Catawba County citizens and North Carolina educational leaders, on April 3, 1958, Catawba Valley Community College was established by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction as the ninth school of its kind in the state. Construction of the original facilities began in 1959. The 40,000 square foot building costing approximately $500,000 was completed in August 1960. An initial enrollment of seventy-seven (77) students began classes in September of the same year. From 1960 to 1963, the College operated under the jurisdiction of the Catawba County Board of Education. During this time the College was known as the Catawba County Industrial Education Center.
In July 1963 the General Assembly of North Carolina enacted into law G.S. 115A which provided for the establishment of the present North Carolina System of Community Colleges. On January 9, 1964, Catawba Valley Technical Institute was among the original seven institutes chartered by the Department. At that time, CVTI established its own Board of Trustees and began operation as a member of the Department of Community Colleges. Thus, it was in August 1964, that the College awarded its first Associate Degree in Applied Science.
It was during the transition from an Industrial Education Center to Technical Institute that great strides began in expanding educational programs, increasing student enrollment, developing quality instruction, adding facilities, and increasing community acceptance and service. On September 1, 1979, the name of the institution was changed to Catawba Valley Technical College by the Trustees and commissioners of Catawba County. On December 1, 1987, the State Board of Community Colleges officially approved CVTC to become Catawba Valley Community College and the College Transfer program was approved.
The addition of the CVCC Alexander Center for Education was approved by the State Board in November 2000, and again we expanded programs and services to better serve our community. We have moved the Alexander Center twice to meet community needs. The most recent move was into a facility purchased by the Alexander County Commissioners. In addition to the 15,000 sq. foot facility on 4.72 acres located at 345 Industrial Boulevard in Taylorsville, the Alexander Commissioners have purchased a second facility adjacent to the original purchase, and in October 2016, we expanded the Alexander Center for Education to include an Alexander Technologies Center, which offers skills programs in furniture and welding.
Today (January 2017), the campus now covers approximately 162 acres and includes 16 buildings for an approximate 650,000 sq. feet of floor space. In addition, there is a CVCC Newton Cosmetology Center located in Newton, the CVCC Corporate Development Center located on U.S. Highway 70, and the Catawba Valley Furniture Academy also located on U. S. Highway 70. The college is excited to be in the process of building a new 80,000 sq. ft. facility at the back of main campus. The CVCC Workforce Solutions Complex is expected to be complete in June of 2018 allowing expanded technology programming.
Catawba Valley Community college will celebrate its 60th anniversary in 2018. The faculty and staff have touched the lives of hundreds of thousands and still today, we are about empowering people to achieve their dreams. During this time span, we have had only three presidents; founding president Robert Paap who retired in 1987, Dr. Cuyler A. Dunbar served from 1987 through 2006. The current president is Dr. Garrett D. Hinshaw who came on board August 1, 2006. Catawba Valley Community College continues as a publicly supported coeducational institution.
Catawba Valley Community College is located in Hickory on U.S. Highways 70 and 321-B, in Catawba County, North Carolina. Situated in the heart of the Piedmont some 1,175 feet above sea level, CVCC is easily accessible over Interstate 40, Highways 321, 70, 16 and 127. It is within seven miles of a commercial airport and approximately 50 miles from metropolitan Charlotte.
The campus covers approximately 162 acres and includes 17 buildings for an approximate total of 600,000 square feet of floor space. In addition, there is the CVCC East Campus, the Corporate Development Center, the Manufacturing Solutions Center, and the Cosmetology Center at the CVCC Newton Center in downtown Newton. The Alexander Center for Education, a 15,000 square foot building situated on 4.72 acres at 345 Industrial Boulevard in Taylorsville, was purchased by Alexander County in 2000 as an off-site center, which opened for classes March 28, 2003. The facilities consist of modern brick buildings. Included is a 30,000 volume library for the use of both students and public, a student center and food service area for leisure relaxation and entertainment, and numerous classrooms and laboratories.
CVCC Policies and Procedures
CVCC policies and procedures regarding students are available for reference on the CVCC website (www.cvcc.edu) under the About Us Link. Following are the direct links, CVCC Policies - http://www.cvcc.edu/About_Us/Policies/ and CVCC Procedures - http://www.cvcc.edu/About_Us/Procedures/. These web pages include, but are not limited to, information regarding admissions, course grading, student conduct, student due process, privacy of students, visitors on campus, sexual offense/assault protocol, campus safety and security, and reporting a crime. Printed copies of a policy/policies, or procedure/procedures are available upon request to Student Services.
Transfer of CVCC Credits to Other Colleges
Technical, vocational, and certificate programs of study at Catawba Valley Community College have been established primarily to prepare individuals for employment upon completion of studies. The College Transfer program has been developed at CVCC to provide opportunities for students to transfer two years of academic credit to senior colleges and universities. Numerous differences exist in the transfer policies of senior institutions. Therefore, details regarding a specific institution should be obtained from the senior institution to which transfer is being considered.
Air Force ROTC Program
To prepare themselves to serve as commissioned officers in the Air Force, students in college transfer programs to pursue a bachelor’s degree may participate in the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) offered by the UNC-Charlotte Department of Aerospace Studies. Information is available in Student Services or on the UNCC webpage at the following address: http://afrotc.uncc.edu/.
Appalachian Center at Hickory
The Appalachian Center in Hickory is an educational consortium of colleges and universities that offer community college students and other adults opportunities to finish their bachelors degrees from one of the participating colleges and universities. Graduate degrees are also available. A wide variety of degree programs are offered with flexible part-time and full-time schedules and face-to-face and on-line formats to meet the needs of adult learners with busy schedules, families, and work commitments. For more information on degree programs available through the Appalachian State University Center in Hickory, call 828-327-7000, ext. 4424.
Alexander Early College High School
Alexander Early College opened its doors in August 2016. Designated a Cooperative Innovative High School, it serves the residents of Alexander County. An application only, selective-enrollment high school, their rigorous, Honors level curriculum is student-centered and emphasizes problem solving, collaboration and college-level reading, writing and mathematical skills. Student have the ability to earn a high school diploma and have access to an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree (or other transferrable credits) on a four or five year plan. Alexander Early College seeks students who are First Generation College (no parent with a Bachelor’s Degree), have documented financial hardship, and are from a single parent household, or those seeking a non-traditional high school environment. The School models the national school reform model designed through research from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Jobs for the Future, the NC Dept. of Public Instruction and NC Community College System. The goal of Alexander Early College is to build lifelong learners who provide further growth to their community by their academic and personal achievements.
Challenger Early College High School
Challenger Early College High School is a non-traditional, application-only, selective enrollment Cooperative Innovative High School which began in 2005. At least 80% of its students must qualify for enrollment based on first-generation college (neither parent has a Bachelor’s degree), be economically disadvantaged according to federal guidelines, live in a single-parent household, and English is their second language. Students must reside in the Catawba County. All high school classes are taught at Honors level, with CVCC courses beginning in the freshmen year. Graduates earn a Future Ready Core Diploma with the required UNC System university admissions courses and have access to earn either an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree from CVCC. Supported by the NC Dept. of Public Instruction, NC Community College System and the Catawba Valley Education Consortium, the school is designed around research, and follows the national early college model by offering students a personalized environment, powerful teaching and learning in classrooms and a pervasive ready-for-college culture that provides opportunities for life in the 21st century. Challenger Early College consistently ranks among one of the top high schools in North Carolina based on academic achievement and standardized testing criteria.
Education Matters is an initiative of Catawba Valley Community College, developed by the college president, local business and government leaders, and school administrators to increase the value of education and educational attainment in Alexander County and Catawba County.
The purpose of this initiative is to build partnerships with our school systems, community college, four-year college institutions, local government, and business and industry to provide a comprehensive community-based approach to intergrade education and career awareness in our schools. The intent is to help students understand the importance of their courses as they work towards high school graduation, plus the postsecondary education and training necessary to secure employment in our community.
In January 2017, we reached the 10,000thstudent in the Extreme Stem Tour events for eighth graders in our community. The tours promote an awareness among the students about what the college is like, introduces them to programs that they may be interested in for the future, and introduces them to several local businesses that partner with the college in the endeavor.
North Carolina Community College System’s Performance Measures for Student Success
In 1993, the State Board of Community Colleges began monitoring performance data on specific measures to ensure public accountability for programs and services. In 1998, the General Assembly directed the State Board to review past performance measures and define standards to ensure programs and services offered by community colleges in North Carolina were of sufficient quality. (North Carolina Community College System, 2012 Critical Success Factors Report, July 2012).
Through the 2012 reporting year, the annual NCCCS Critical Success Factors Report was the means by which the community college system reported on performance measures referred to as Critical Success Factors. In February 1999, the North Carolina State Board of Community Colleges originally adopted twelve (12) performance measures to ensure that programs and services offered by community colleges were of sufficient quality. During the 2010-2011 reporting year, the number of measures was dropped to seven (7). These performance standards focused primarily on student success and served as the System’s major public accountability tool.
Beginning in 2013, the North Carolina Community College system adopted the Performance Measures for Student Success. Today, performance funding is based on seven distinct measures.
Catawba Valley Community College – 2016 Performance Measures for Student Success
North Carolina Community College System (NCCCS)
2016 NCCCS Performance Measure
for Student Success
|2016 NCCCS System
Excellence Level and
2016 NCCCS Average
2016 CVCC Measure
|Basic Skills Progress
Excellence Level = 68.3%
Baseline = 34.5%
|Credit English Success
Excellence Level = 55.9%
Baseline = 23.8%
|Credit Math Success
Excellence Level = 32.5%
Baseline = 10.1%
|First Year Progression
Excellence Level = 75.0%
Baseline = 54.1%
|Curriculum Completion Rate
Excellence Level = 51.9%
Baseline = 35.9%
|Licensure Passing Rate
Excellence Level = 90.9%
Baseline = 69.9%
Excellence Level = 87.6%
Baseline = 65.1%
For further explanations and information, please visit the NCCCS
NC Community Colleges Creating Success: 2016 Performance Measures for Student Success report webpage at
Notice of Non-discrimination
Catawba Valley Community College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex/gender identity, religion, creed, age, disability, veteran or active military status, genetic characteristics, or any other category protected by law under Title VII and/or Title IX.
Dean of the School of Student Access, Development, and Success
2550 U.S. Highway 70 SE
Hickory, NC 28602-8302
Telephone – 828-327-7000
Director of Human Resources
2550 U.S. Highway 70 SE
Hickory, NC 28602-8302
Telephone – 828-327-7000