Our history: A story of perseverance

Southwestern’s story in Curry County begins in 1975, when the college contracted with the Curry Education Service District for a small offering of classes.

Due to the county’s isolation, residents wanted access to college and job training. Over the next decade, this partnership brought in undergraduate and enrichment classes supported by state funding.

In the late 1980s with timber jobs disappearing, Curry residents attempted unsuccessfully to create an independent community college service district. The state turned it down.

On a mission for education

Refusing to give up, in 1995 citizens spearheaded an initiative to include Curry County in the Southwestern Oregon Community College district. They wanted more college classes and the services of a Small Business Development Center.

Under state Ballot Measure 5, Curry County residents recognized a unique opportunity to bring the benefits of college services to Curry County at almost no direct cost to the taxpayers. They took their initiative to the ballot to annex Curry County into the Southwestern district. Voters approved! The college offered classes in Brookings’ tiny former library building for many years.

In 2007, the U.S. Borax company donated 10 acres of its former Lone Ranch site to the college for a new campus. After a community fundraising effort and state support, in 2012 the college opened the new Curry Campus in Brookings.

We'd love to have you visit our beautiful forested campus looking out toward the Pacific Ocean. We are located just north of the city next to U.S. Highway 101 at 96082 Lone Ranch Parkway Brookings, OR 97415.