50th Anniversary book now on sale

"Reaching for Tomorrow" chronicles the history of the College through photos, narrative, and timelines.

“Reaching for Tomorrow: The San Jacinto College Story 1961-2011,” a book that chronicles the first 50 years of San Jacinto College (SJC) through photos, narrative, and timelines, is now on sale.

The 160-page hardcover book includes more than 250 photos and a 32,000-word narrative of notable events, providing an informative account of the College’s extraordinary history. The price of the book is just $35.95, and can be purchased online at http://www.sanjac50.com, or at any of the San Jacinto College campus bookstores, which are located in the student center on each campus.

The book chronicles the College’s humble beginnings in 1961 when San Jacinto College held its first classes in a renovated storefront in old downtown Pasadena. Photos of the first temporary site are included, as well as photos of construction at the first permanent campus on Spencer Highway at a site where Pasadena, La Porte, and Deer Park converge.

Readers can trace the College’s rapid growth and development during the formative years when, by Fall 1967, enrollment reached 5,164, pushing San Jacinto College ahead of all Harris County college enrollments, with the exception of the University of Houston.

Readers can also follow the College’s expansion to the North Channel area with the opening of the North Campus in 1975, and to the South Belt-Ellington area with the opening of the South Campus in 1979. Photos chronicle notable facility expansions from the opening of the first permanent classroom at the Central Campus in 1962 to the new buildings currently under construction at all three campuses.

Photos in the book depict students on campus and in classrooms through the years, and the narrative chronicles many of the state, regional, and national academic achievements earned by SJC students. The book also features SJC student athletes in action through the years, and photos show them proudly displaying many regional, state, and national athletic championship trophies.

The author of the book is Dr. Michael Modica, who teaches history and geography at San Jacinto College, and served as the behavioral science and education department chair for the Central Campus from 2001 to 2007. Contributing writers include SJC employees Amanda Booren, Teri Fowlé, Jeannie Peng-Armao, Rob Vanya, Andrea Vasquez, and Dr. Laurel V. Williamson.