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History of RBC

BORN OF INNOVATION

  • Began 1960 By Virginia General Assembly
  • 750-Acres Former Dairy Farm
  • Located Prince George County
  • Civil War Union Occupied Territory
  • Century-Old Pecan Trees

HISTORY OF RBC

POLITICAL FACTORS AFFECTING THE ESTABLISHMENT AND GROWTH OF RICHARD BLAND COLLEGE OF WILLIAM & MARY IN VIRGINIA 1958-1972 by DR. JAMES B. MCNEER

The need for a two-year college in Southaide Virginia was enhanced by the interest of and support generated by The College of William and Mary. Even though William and Mary was not the first four-year insti­ tution approached by interested citizens in the Petersburg area, it was the one that agreed to support a local branch college. The establish­ ment of Richard Bland by William and Mary would serve as a base for William and Mary exerting an influence on the direction of higher education in Virginia, reaching from south of Richmond to the North Carolina line and east to the Atlantic Seaboard. This political goal of William and Mary coincided with the desire of certain citizens in the Petersburg area to make available to high school graduates an inexpensive, state-supported, commuter institution near their homes. Only Virginia State College, a four-year, black, state-supported institution existed in Southside Virginia at the time of the creation of Richard Bland College.

Born of Innovation 1960

Richard Bland College (RBC), Virginia’s selective, two-year, residential, liberal arts transfer institution, was born through innovation. In 1959, years before the Virginia Community College system was imagined, Frank Ernst – a Gateway region native, entrepreneur, and retired executive of Hopewell’s Allied Chemical Plant – proposed the creation of an institution grounded in the liberal arts tradition with opportunities for specialized training in in-demand fields such as engineering to the State Council of Higher Education. After discussions with Virginia Tech and the University of Virginia, Ernst found a willing partner in the College of William & Mary, the second-oldest university in the United States, who founded Richard Bland College in 1960. RBC has since offered multiple certificates and university-parallel two-year degrees.

 

The Beginning of Richard Bland

The College was named for the Virginia statesman and champion of public rights, Richard Bland. Son and grandson of successful planters, Richard Bland was educated at The College of William and Mary. From 1742 until his death in 1776, he represented the area in which the College is now located, first in the House of Burgesses, and later, with the adoption of a state constitution, in the House of Delegates. He also served as a delegate from Virginia in both the First and Second Continental Congresses.

It seems fitting, therefore, that an institution of higher learning located in an area served for so many years by this distinguished Virginia patriot and scholar, should derive its name from one whom Jefferson described “as the most learned and logical man of those who took prominent lead in public affairs.”

 

SEIZE YOUR POTENTIAL AT Richard Bland College

By attending Richard Bland College and earning an Associate Degree, you will have completed the first two years toward the Baccalaureate Degree.

Richard Bland College has guaranteed transfer agreements gwith four-year colleges and universities across the Commonwealth that will enhance your educational opportunities. The Board of Visitors of William & Mary has authorized Richard Bland College to confer Associate degrees designed for transfer to four-year institutions in Virginia and throughout the United States.

 

Four-Year Transfer Partners

Richard Bland College of William & Mary prepares students for transfer to highly-ranked colleges and universities. RBC has guaranteed transfer agreements with 35-plus institutions throughout Virginia that enables you to seamlessly transfer to earn your bachelors degree.
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