Eastern Florida State College Celebrates 60th Anniversary

By  //  February 13, 2020

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EFSC has four campuses with locations in Titusville, Cocoa, Melbourne and Palm Bay

Graduates attend EFSC’s 2019 Fall Graduation Ceremony (Image by Eastern Florida State College).

BREVARD COUNTY – Eastern Florida State College is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year.

The institution, founded in 1960 as Brevard Junior College, will hold an event celebrating the anniversary on April 16 in conjunction with community leaders, according to John Glisch, associate vice president for communications at the school.

It’s heady stuff for a school that began out of a since-demolished Cocoa High School building in 1960.

“We’re extremely proud of our 60th anniversary because of all the advances the college has made through the years and all the advances we continue to make,” Glisch said.

EFSC has slowly evolved into what it is now, with a campus each in Titusville, Cocoa, Melbourne and Palm Bay.

In 1963, then-Brevard Junior College integrated with Carver Junior College, which extended educational opportunities to African-American students. The new school would be based in the area of what is now home to Eastern Florida State’s Cocoa campus.

In 1970, the institution was renamed Brevard Community College.

The Palm Bay campus opened in 1972 with a campus in Melbourne opening soon after in 1973. The Titusville location became operational in 1990.

All of the campuses also have a unique focus, Glisch noted, with Cocoa focusing on “expanding and developing new programs to educate train new students,” Melbourne serving as a main campus, Palm Bay “focusing on a lot of advanced technology” and Titusville having “a number of programs that can feed into everything else.”

“We have more campuses than anyone else and we really serve the largest area, it’s about 75 miles from north Brevard to south Brevard so that makes us unique,” Glisch said.

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The name Brevard Community College changed to Eastern Florida State College in 2013 as the school began to offer bachelor’s degrees.

The number of students enrolled in bachelor’s programs currently is a record, Glisch says, with the average age of students set at 32.

“They’re (the students) seeing it as a chance to come back to school,” Glisch added.

That came on the heels of the appointment of Jim Richey as president in 2012. Since his appointment as its seventh leader in school history, EFSC says it has added more than 60 academic programs in Richey’s tenure, including 25 bachelor’s degree tracks.

“I think the thing that excites all of us the most is the many pathways to success,” Glisch said.

In all, the school says more than 120,000 students have earned degrees since the school’s opening and roughly 20,000 are currently enrolled in programs that the school offers both its four campuses and online.

“The future of the college is exceptionally bright with our excellent programs and unique spirit giving students a wealth of opportunities,” added Richey in a release.