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.
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 College continues as a publicly supported coeducational institution.