Little Rock Junior College
In 1927, Little Rock Junior College opened to provide college-level
courses to central Arkansas citizens who wanted and needed access
to higher education. In its first year, "Jaycee" - as
students would soon refer to the new college - met at Little Rock
Senior High School and enrolled approximately 100 students paying
five dollars per semester hour for the college's two-year liberal
early years of the new junior college were guided by the dreams
and diligence of LRJC founder, John A. Larson (president, 1930-1950).
Despite limited funding, Larson was determined to see LRJC flourish.
In 1929, his aspirations for expanding the junior college were
fulfilled when former Arkansas Governor George W. Donaghey named
LRJC as the sole beneficiary of a trust valued in excess of two
An increased commitment to public service marked the school's
growth over the next decades as LRJC continually found new ways
to meet the community's educational needs. For instance, the school
responded to Little Rock's employment demands by offering vocational
instruction in areas such as surveying and pattern-making and
educated non-traditional students through adult education courses
in art history, sketching, and literature.
Jaycee moved to its current location in 1949 after Little Rock
businessman Raymond Rebsamen generously donated an 80-acre tract
of land on Hayes Street. With a campus of its own and financial
support from the Little Rock business community, LRJC thrived
over the next decade - adding new buildings, increasing enrollment,
and eventually outgrowing its junior college status.