Founded in 1974, Atlanta Metropolitan State College was for several decades the only predominantly Black two-year institution in Georgia. In 2012 the college began offering four-year degree programs as well. It is located in southwest Atlanta, five minutes from downtown, on an expansive sixty-eight-acre wooded tract. The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority bus line stops at the campus, which is adjacent to Interstate 75/85.
Enrollment in 2011 was 2,782 students, most of whom were nontraditional (the average student is twenty-seven years old). Of these, 65 percent were women and 92 percent were Georgia residents.
In June 1965, the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia authorized a junior college for the west metropolitan area of Atlanta. The Atlanta school board and the Board of Regents decided to build the college on land adjacent to the Atlanta Area Technical School, which was under the jurisdiction of the Atlanta Board of Education.
In February 1971, the Atlanta school board authorized the superintendent of the Atlanta Public School System to develop a financial plan for building the new college. In 1973 the Board of Regents authorized the plans and specifications for the first phase of construction, at a projected cost of $2 million. Construction began on the first building in 1973 and was completed in August 1974.
Established as Atlanta Junior College, the school became the thirty-first institution of the University System of Georgia and began classes in September 1974 with an initial enrollment of 504 students. In 1988 the institution’s name was changed to Atlanta Metropolitan College, and in 2012 its name changed again, to Atlanta Metropolitan State College.
Programs and Accreditation
In 2012 Atlanta Metropolitan State College offered bachelor’s and associate degrees in the fields of business; humanities and fine arts; science, mathematics, and health professions; and social sciences. The college offers individualized and innovative learning experiences for both traditional and nontraditional students preparing to transfer into baccalaureate programs, enter or reenter the workforce, or develop technologically advanced skills to meet workforce demands. The college also offers a wide range of academic resources and support services, including tutoring, to assist students.
In addition to the academic programs, students may participate in approved honorary, professional, and social student clubs and organizations. Among these are the Student Government Association, Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Society, Students in Free Enterprise, the College Choir, the International Students Organization, and a student newspaper. Atlanta Metropolitan State College also has a strong intercollegiate athletics record, holding multiple championships in the Georgia Junior College Athletic Association Conference for men’s basketball.