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National Park Community College: Academics, Admissions & Tuition

Learn what degree and certificate programs National Park Community College offers. Research its academics, and read about its admission and financial aid info to make an informed education decision.

About National Park Community College

National Park Community College (NPCC) is located about 50 miles southwest of Little Rock in the small resort town of Hot Springs, Arkansas. NPCC was formed in 2003 through the merging of Garland County Community College and Quapaw Technical Institute. The campus is now home to roughly 4000 students seeking both continued education and vocational training. The college has strong ties to the small community shown through gifts like the Frederick M. Dierks Center for Nursing and Health Sciences, which opened in 2009.


Within NPCC are eight distinct divisions - business, communication and arts, health sciences, math sciences, nursing, social sciences, technical/professional, and learning acceleration. The technical division offers ten associate degrees and certificates in areas of study specific to employment, such as early childhood education, hospitality administration, and residential carpentry. The learning acceleration division provides courses for students who may need a refresher before taking classes for college credit. The other six academic divisions offer students more than 50 certificate and associate degree programs.

NPCC also offers students the option of e-learning. Students can take four programs entirely online, and ten other programs are at least 50% online. Another opportunity for NPCC students is to complete their bachelor's degree requirements through the University in the Park program. NPCC has partnered with six universities to offer bachelor's programs in such areas as nursing, human resources, and business via distance learning and special university classes held on the community college campus.

NPCC provides students with a number of resources including a library, a computer resource center, a research center, and free tutoring. The college also encourages students to become involved in the community through service learning, internships, and volunteering.


National Park Community College follows an open admission policy - allowing anyone with a high school diploma or GED to attend. Prospective students must fill out the online application and submit their transcripts and immunization records. Students who don't submit ACT test results should take the Compass assessment tests in math, reading, and writing for accurate class placement. New students are required to meet with a counselor to discuss their academic plan. College counselors and advisers are available to help both students looking to transfer to a four-year university and students on a career path.

As of fall 2011, the student body at NPCC was 79% white and 12% black or African American and 61% female. The student population is just about split in half between full-time and part-time students. About 50% of enrolled students are 24 and under.

Tuition & Financial Aid

For the 2012-2013 academic year, students residing within Garland County pay $80 per credit hour. Out-of-county students pay $90 per credit hour, out-of-state students pay $134 per credit hour, and international students pay $198 per credit hour. Additional semester fees include a $50 registration fee, a $50 infrastructure fee, $5 per credit hour fee for technology, and $10 per hour for online and lab fees when applicable. The estimated cost for books and supplies for the 2011-2012 year was $1200. Living costs were estimated to be about $8500 and other expenses were about $5400 per year.

All students can apply for state and federal financial aid through the FAFSA application. The National Park Community College Foundation receives financial donations from individuals and businesses in the community, which provide merit and need-based scholarships for NPCC students. NPCC offers flexible payment plans for students who prefer to pay in installments. The full payment, or first payment if registered for a payment plan, is due at the beginning of August for fall semester and beginning of January for spring semester.

School Type 2-year, public*
Degrees Offered Under-one-year certificate*
Under-two-year certificate*
Religious Affiliation None*
Academic Calendar Semesters**
School Setting Small resort town**
Student Body Around 4268 in fall 2011*
Student Housing None*
Programs Eight divisions**
Over 50 degree and certificate programs**
Student-Faculty Ratio 23 to 1*
Most Popular Fields of Study by Degree Level (Number of Recipients) In 2011:
Under-one-year certificate: general office occupations and clerical services (7)*
Under-two-year certificate: health services (44)*
Associate: general studies (186)*
Undergraduate Graduation Rates 19% graduated and 9% transferred out within 150% of normal time (students who began studies in 2008)*
Admission Rate Open admissions*
Entering Class Size In fall 2011: 132 part-time and 489 full-time***
First-Year Retention Rates In fall 2011: 35% part-time and 56% full-time*
Tuition (2012-2013) Maximum semester tuition for:
In-county: $1440**
Out-of-county: $1620**
Out-of-state: $2412**
Financial Aid Sources Available (Percent of Students Receiving it) In 2011 for beginning students studying full-time:
Federal grant aid (78%)***
State/local grant aid (29%)***
Institutional grant aid (18%)***
Loan (48%)***
Percent of Students Receiving Some Form of Aid 93% of first-time students in 2011*

Sources: *NCES College Navigator, **National Park Community College, ***NCES IPED Data Center.

School Contact Information

  • Address: National Park Community College, 101 College Drive, Hot Springs, AR 71913
  • Phone: (501) 760-4222
  • Website:

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