National Park Community College emerged as a result of the blending of Garland County Community College and Quapaw Technical Institute into a comprehensive two-year institution by Act 678 of the 2003 Arkansas General Assembly effective July 1, 2003. Nestled in the Ouachita Mountains, the college is located in Mid-America Park, just outside the city limits of Hot Springs, America's oldest national park service site.
Previously, GCCC had been established as a two-year college in 1973 to provide post secondary higher education opportunities to the citizens of Garland County and the surrounding areas. QTI was first established Quapaw Vocational Technical School, a branch campus of the Ouachita Vocational Technical School at Malvern. The facility at the Hot Springs Branch opened in 1969, and Act 310 of 1973 stipulated that the Hot Springs branch of the school at Malvern be a separate independent entity named Quapaw Vocational Technical School. As a result of Act 1244 and Act 773 of 1991, the State Board of Vocational Education changed the name to Quapaw Technical Institute, July 8, 1991.
Vocational technical schools throughout history have been designated to provide job training for business and industry. As a Technical Institute, Quapaw was committed to providing quality education and training to enhance the employment opportunities and increase the personal development of students. Combined, NPCC forms a comprehensive institution offering associate degrees and certificates as well as continuing education/ community services and workforce training.
The college is among the top 20 employers in the county providing a significant economic impact to the community as well as providing services that contribute to further economic development in the area. The college has approximately 379 employees including 210 full time and 169 part time. The college's operating budget is more than $12 million. The college's payroll for last year was $9.2 million.
NPCC averages approximately 3,000 credit students per semester enrolled in college courses blending liberal arts with occupational education to prepare students to enter the workforce or transfer to a four-year institution. Over 3,818 students a year also enroll in a wide range of non-credit and continuing education services provided by the Community and Corporate Training Division. These include customized workforce training for business and industry, on-site courses for the hospitality and tourism industry, on campus computer classes, online classes, and various professional development workshops.