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History & Tradition

  • ECC History

    In 2006, Erie Community College celebrated its 60th anniversary. In the past six decades, the college has grown from a small two-year technical institute to a three-campus college serving more than 14,000 students. Today, ECC is the second largest college in Western New York.

    On April 4, 1946, the Legislature of the State of New York, recognizing the need for technical-vocational education at the junior college level, established the New York State Institute of Applied Arts and Sciences at Buffalo as one of the five, tuition-free, two-year technical institutes for high school graduates.

    Two years later, in 1948, when the New York State Legislature founded the State University of New York, the Institute at Buffalo became one of the units of the University. On September 1, 1953, while maintaining ties with the State University of New York, Erie County assumed sponsorship of the college, changing its name to the Erie County Technical Institute (ECTI).

    Subsequently, in 1960, the Erie County Technical Institute moved to the present site of the North Campus at 6205 Main Street in Williamsville, NY; and, in 1969, the name of the college was once again changed, this time to its present designation, Erie Community College (ECC).

    In 1971, the City Campus, housed in the former Bishop O’Hern High School in downtown Buffalo, opened, making ECC the first multi-campus college in New York State outside of New York City.

    The South Campus opened in the fall of 1974, providing accessibility for those in the southern parts of the county. In January of 1982, the City Campus moved into its refurbished quarters in the heart of Buffalo.

    Through the years, Erie Community College has undergone significant changes as it has moved to serve its constituents with state-of-the-art facilities, professionally accredited programs and an outstanding teaching faculty.