About the Stockton Campus

Two key decisions were endorsed by the Board of Trustees in the fall of 1968. Though the campus would be one of the largest in California, the student population would be divided into five instructional centers. The design of each center included a central open courtyard, snack bar and study lounge. The goal was to encourage students and faculty to develop activities according to their own interests, creating a healthy campus-wide diversity. The decision reflected the philosophy that all knowledge, as with all work, is worthwhile and not susceptible to "status." Students with greatly different backgrounds and career interests, musicians and mechanics—meet in the hallways, lounges and sometimes classrooms, and learn to respect each other's values.

A committee had initially recommended the names of deceased, local historical figures who had made significant contributions to education and the trustees agreed. Cunningham Center and a portion of Budd Center were the first buildings to open in 1973, with classes in physical education, life science, public safety and services, computer science, and printing.

Cunningham Center, named after Sheriff Thomas Cunningham of the late 1800's opened in June 1973. The center included Clever Planetarium, the only planetarium in San Joaquin Valley.

Holt Center named after Benjamin Holt, developer of the belt tread tractor that helped make large-scale farming possible in this region's peat soil, opened in the summer of 1974, and contained instruction in music, machine technology, heating and air conditioning, welding, engineering, and the only college electron microscopy lab in the nation.

Shima Center honors the memory of George Shima, who left Japan in the 1880's after failing his university examinations and founded an agricultural empire on land reclaimed from Delta bog. Shima Center opened during the spring 1975 semester and offers instruction in agriculture and natural resources, broadcasting, visual arts, home economics (including early childhood education), business, and photography. The L.H. Horton, Jr. Art Gallery provides exhibits and displays in creative artistry.

Budd and Locke Centers were completed in the fall of 1976, except for a vocational shops of Budd which had opened in conjunction with Cunningham Center in 1973. James Budd was the only Stocktonian to become Governor of California. The center houses physical education, athletics, and dance facilities, including the 3,000-seat Blanchard Gymnasium and June Fergusson Pool.

Locke Center honors Dr. Dean Jewett Locke, founder of Lockeford and the Lockeford School District. The center includes instruction in nursing, business, and drama. It includes Tillie Lewis Theatre as well as the 100-seat Alfred H. Muller Studio Theatre, named in 2013 to honor the highly-regarded former Professor of Drama. Adjacent to Locke Center is Warren Atherton Auditorium which seats over 1,400 guests and serves as a focal point for arts in the region.

Three other campus buildings also bear historical names: Goleman Library is named after Dr. Irving Goleman, a former Delta teacher and thinker who believed no one was truly educated without experiencing the liberal arts; Danner Hall honors Helen Danner, Associate Dean of Students at Delta until her death in 1970. Danner Hall contains the Academic Computing Center, main cafeteria, The Student Chef, a student-run gourmet restaurant, and College Bookstore. The perimeter roads connecting the different campus areas are named in honor of Dr. Burke Bradley, Burke Bradley Road in the south part of the campus and Burke Bradley Drive in the north. Dr. Bradley was President of Stockton College in 1956 and presided over the separation of San Joaquin Delta College from the Stockton Unified School District in 1963.

The first new building to be erected since the initial campus construction of the 1970s was the Child Development Center. Opened in 1994, during the presidency of Dr. L.H. Horton, Jr., it provides students and staff with a much needed place for child care and also serves the instructional child development program as a laboratory.

The Center for Microscopy and Allied Sciences was opened in Fall 2003 to house the long-established program in Electron Microscopy. The only program of its kind in the western United States, it trains technicians in the preparation of materials and operation of various electron microscopes.

Following the successful passage of a $250 million bond measure in 2004, planning for improvements of the Stockton Campus began and in 2009, the College dedicated the Lawrence and Alma De Ricco Student Services Building to honor the former president for his many years of service and commitment to Delta College. Dr. DeRicco is considered one of the "Founding Fathers" of the College. In addition, the state-of-the-art, Olympic caliber Merv Smith Track Complex was dedicated in early 2010 to honor the former track coach and long-time faculty member. Coach Smith led Delta College teams to numerous championships from 1970-1997. In 2010, the college rededicated the newly refurbished Goleman Library followed by the dedication of the Bucky Layland Softball Complex, and Lee Belarmino, Sr. District Data Center in 2011.

The spring of 2014 saw the opening of the College's new Science and Mathematics building. The building includes over 70,000 square feet of office, classroom, and laboratory space wrapped around a central service core with dry labs on the first floor, wet biology labs on the second, and chemistry labs on the third. The building is equipped with the latest equipment and technology expected in a modern college science facility. In addition, the College opened newly remodeled diesel and heavy equipment technology shops and classrooms in Shima Center. As the spring semester moved forward, regular visitors to the campus began to see the former Cunningham Center science and mathematics building beginning to be prepared for demolition.