Long Beach Officials Celebrate Grand Opening of New North Long Beach Higher Education Center
The new center provides a place of support and belonging for LBCC’s Black/African American community

Press Release
North Long Beach Higher Education Center Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

Long Beach, CA – Today, the City of Long Beach, in partnership with Long Beach City College (LBCC), celebrated the grand opening of the North Long Beach Higher Education Center (Center) with a ceremonial ribbon cutting, open house and mural dedication. The Center will serve to increase access to higher education, job training, and technology and business resources for the North Long Beach community.

“Creating equitable access to higher education and job training opportunities is imperative to ensuring that our residents have the resources they need to thrive,” said Mayor Rex Richardson. “The North Long Beach Higher Education Center will help close the geographic gap in services by connecting residents to the resources they need to pursue their educational and career dreams. It is an honor to see this project finally come to fruition. I thank our partners at Long Beach City College for their continued investment in education.”

“Today’s festivities are a celebration of equity and providing access to LBCC’s many educational services and resources closer to North Long Beach residents,” said Dr. Mike Muñoz, Long Beach City College Superintendent-President. “LBCC hopes that the new North Long Beach Higher Education Center will become an important asset for this community through our offerings of tuition-free non-credit courses, small business support services, and workforce training opportunities. Together with our City of Long Beach partners, we are committed to empowering and uplifting our community members through education.”

The Center, located at 635 E. South St., is another collaborative effort between the City and LBCC. The shared community space serves as a physical location in North Long Beach where all residents can access education and career resources, tuition-free non-credit courses, small business support services, and workforce training opportunities that cater to diverse needs and aspirations. The Center also includes a cutting-edge computer lab for residents to use for classes or enrollment. The City’s Department of Economic Development, and its workforce bureau, Pacific Gateway Workforce Innovation Network and LBCC staff will oversee Center operations and work alongside community partners to conduct programming. The Center will operate Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. More information about available services and programs is available at LBCC.edu/northlb.

“After years of effort, the establishment of the North Long Beach Higher Education Center marks a significant milestone for our community,” affirmed Ninth District Councilwoman Dr. Joni Ricks-Oddie. “This Center will serve as a pivotal hub for educational and workforce enhancement, empowering individuals through access to essential training and resources vital for success in the job market.”

“The North Long Beach Higher Education Center is another exceptional example of LBCC prioritizing our community,” said Vivian Malauulu, Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) Board of Trustees President. “The residents of North Long Beach now have access to a wealth of educational and career resources that are conveniently located in the heart of their neighborhood.” 

Last year the 3,200 square-foot building underwent extensive refurbishments including a new storefront with upgraded flooring and electrical systems, a conference room, computer room and onsite manager’s office, as well as exterior improvements such as new painting, roofing, lighting and landscaping. The enhanced facade now also includes a vibrant mural, initiated by the Puente Latino Association, that adorns the entire west wall exterior. 

“This Center is a testament to our commitment to education and workforce development, ensuring that all residents have access to the tools they need to succeed,” said Director of Economic Development Bo Martinez. “I am incredibly proud of our Economic Development and Pacific Gateway staff for their dedication to this project and am grateful for the ongoing support of our LBCC partners.”

The original concept to develop a center for higher education came from then-Vice Mayor Rex Richardson and was approved by the full City Council in November 2018 to initiate a feasibility study to create a Higher Education Center in Long Beach. After receiving strong support for the concept from LBCCD Board of Trustee Member Uduak-Joe Ntuk and LBCC, the City located and secured a property and in August 2022 entered into a lease agreement with Long Beach Arts District to renovate and utilize the building as an education center, which LBCC will program along with Pacific Gateway. While the project was temporarily halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, over the past few years the City’s Department of Economic Development has collaborated with LBCC and North Long Beach higher education experts and advocates to advance the North Long Beach Higher Education Center project to completion. 

About the City of Long Beach
Long Beach is nestled along the Southern California coast and home to approximately 466,000 people. As an award-winning full-service charter city, Long Beach offers the amenities of a metropolitan city while maintaining a strong sense of individual and diverse neighborhoods, culture and community. With a bustling downtown and over six miles of scenic beaches, Long Beach is a renowned tourist and business destination and home to the iconic Queen Mary, nationally recognized Aquarium of the Pacific and Long Beach Airport, award-winning Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center and world-class Port of Long Beach.

For more information about the City of Long Beach, visit longbeach.gov/. Follow us on social to keep up with the latest news: Facebook, X, Instagram and YouTube. More information about the Department of Economic Development is available at longbeach.gov/economicdevelopment or stay up to date on business news by signing up for the City’s Business Brief.

About Long Beach City College
Long Beach City College consists of two campuses with an enrollment of over 25,000 students each semester and serves the cities of Long Beach, Lakewood, Signal Hill, and Avalon. LBCC promotes equitable student learning and achievement, academic excellence, and workforce development by delivering high quality educational programs and support services to our diverse communities. Visit www.LBCC.edu for more information about Long Beach City College.

Stacey Toda
LBCC Associate Director
Communications & Community Engagement
(562) 938-4004