Roy Gilbert

50 Years Ago: Work on NCC’s new home begins

50 Years Ago: Many Farms High used to house NCC students

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This was an important week for Navajo Community College. Forty years ago this week construction crews began preparing a section of land near Tsaile Lake to become the new home of the college.

For the previous year, the college had been holding classes at the BIA’s boarding school in Many Farms, Arizona, which everyone admitted had not been an ideal situation. Dormitory and classroom space were limited so the college had been restrictive in how many students could be enrolled.

But the college had $4.1 million in grants from the federal and tribal governments and was ready to move on to its next phase.

The plan was to start small with construction of dormitories to house 300 students, a classroom building that would serve 500 students and a building for vocational studies. Smaller buildings would house administrative staff. The college planned to use part of the money to build housing for teachers and staff.

Work on the buildings was expected to start the following spring with completion expected in 1971.

The big question was if all of this could be done with just $4.1 million, and the answer to that was no.

College officials said they planned to seek a couple of million more dollars in 1970 and 1971 to complete the planned construction.“The money will be there,” said Bob Roessell, the college’s chancellor. “All we have to do is seek it out.”In other news, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development sent a stern letter to the tribe to do something about the […]

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