On April 3, 1963, the Bergen County Board of Chosen Freeholders passed a resolution appointing a committee of distinguished citizens charged with the responsibility of inquiring into the needs for a two-year county college in Bergen County.

Two years later, these same elected officials passed a resolution that would ultimately see their dream realized on nine holes of Orchard Hills Golf Course with the establishment of Bergen Community College.

Since then, seven presidents have led the state’s largest community college, including its first, Dr. Sidney Silverman (hired in 1967). Dr. Silverman led the College for its first 10 years, overseeing the expansion of the Paramus main campus through both physical and human resources.

The College’s vast physical resources include state-of-the-art facilities such as the Technology Education Center (opened 2003), which includes a dual-domed astronomy observatory, West Hall (opened in 2007) which houses Gallery Bergen, and the region’s only Health Professions Integrated Teaching Center (opened 2016).

Bergen also expanded beyond its Paramus main campus, adding a Hackensack location in 1970 and a Lyndhurst facility in 2008 to serve residents throughout the county.

Dr. Silverman and his predecessors, including current president Dr. Michael D. Redmond, have prioritized the hallmarks of a community college education: quality, access and affordability for all who seek lifelong learning opportunities. More than 600,000 students have taken classes at Bergen, with countless others visiting for community and cultural events.

The College now ranks No. 1 in the state of New Jersey for associate degree graduates; alumni have attended the country’s most prestigious universities, including all eight Ivy League institutions.