How NPRC Helps Erie County

Some people say they want a community college in Erie. We agree. Erie County deserves affordable higher education and workforce development opportunities for all its citizens. 

Here is what we are doing to help:

We’re Northern Pennsylvania Regional College and we are committed to serving the residents of Erie County. We offer two-year associate degrees in a wide field of studies and deliver real-time classroom instruction with the latest innovative digital technology. We do this by partnering with existing educational institutions and community organizations to provide excellent college-level instruction and workforce development opportunities at affordable tuition rates and locations convenient to you. Through this proven and effective model, NPRC is filling an educational void that has been in existence far too long in our great communities.

When the NPRC was being formed, Erie County elected officials, education leaders, and community leaders petitioned the state in August 2014 to include Erie County in the College’s service area. State government heard those requests and added Erie County to the College’s footprint at that time. With NPRC, no additional local investment is required because funding for the Regional College comes from tuition revenue and state support. In fact, with our model, we bring revenue into communities by leasing existing, underutilized facilities.

After a separate movement to establish a community college in Erie was begun in 2016, we tried in good faith to work cooperatively with the Erie County government administration, the Erie County Task Force, and Erie County Council to find a way to collaborate. But the original, approved Memorandum of Agreement, developed by Erie County government administration and our College officials, was substantially altered and then approved by the Erie County Council. There are significant legal, accreditation, and philosophical issues that prohibit the changes Erie County Council is seeking. Therefore, we have moved to cease further discussions with the Erie County Task Force at this time.

We had hoped that the meeting we had with the task force on August 9, 2019, would facilitate a process to put solid mechanisms in place to provide input on Erie’s needs, recommended locations, and desired programming. Since the conversation did not move in that direction, we are reinstating our original plan to move forward with an Erie Advisory Committee and will work with community stakeholders to identify pressing education and training needs, just as we have in other counties we serve.

As a non-profit regional college, it is our mission to provide affordable and accessible post-secondary education to the underserved residents of northern Pennsylvania. We support the people of Erie County and we will continue to provide excellent higher education to you. If you want to learn more about NPRC or are interested in taking classes, visit our website here.

Northern Pennsylvania Regional College – Serving Erie County with affordable higher education and workforce training.