Ranger College is a public community college in Ranger, Texas. The college's website asserts that it "is one of the oldest public two-year colleges in continuous operation in the state of Texas." In conjunction with its main campus in Ranger, the college maintains several satellite campuses across Erath County and Brown County, Texas. Ranger College provides dual-credit courses to over 40 area school districts. The main campus is located at 1100 College Circle, Ranger, TX 76470.
Ranger College in Ranger, Texas
|President||Dr. Bill Campion|
|Undergraduates||2414 (as of Fall 2018)|
|Campus||Rural, 50 acres|
|Colors||Purple and white|
As defined by the Texas State Legislature, the official service area of Ranger College is the part of the Ranger Independent School District located in Eastland County, excluding the area known as the "old Bullock School Land", and all of Brown, Comanche, Erath, and Young counties, excluding the portion of the Graham Independent School District located in Young County.
The school opened on September 13, 1926 with thirty students. The State Department of Education recognized it on March 23, 1927. Ranger College was a governed by the public school system until August 18, 1950, when the Board of Education separated junior colleges. The school thereafter has been governed independently by a Board of Regents and its own presidents, of which Dr. G. C. Boswell was the first.
Ranger College is accredited as a degree-granting institution by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
In 2011, Ranger College, along with Frank Phillips College in Borger, Brazosport College in Lake Jackson, and Odessa College in Odessa, was proposed for closure by the State of Texas. The Texas Association of Community Colleges rallied successfully to keep the four institutions open. In a letter to Texas House Speaker Joe Straus of San Antonio and Jim Pitts of Waxahachie, then the chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, TAAC leaders referred to state budget restrictions at the time:
Community colleges are fully aware of the state's budget crisis, and we understand that we will have to bear our share of the budget pain. We pledge to work with you to reach a fair and equitable solution ... the decision to close these four colleges is unfair and inequitable in that it appears to be arbitrary and ill-advised. We stand in support of our sister colleges, and we look forward to a productive debate ...
The 2011 proposal to close the schools was not adopted, and Ranger College continued to receive state funding. Since then, student enrollment at Ranger College has increased almost every year:
In November 2016, the city of Ranger voted to approve a $10 million bond to provide new buildings and renovations across campus. Construction began in the winter of 2017 and is scheduled to be completed by 2020.
Ranger College's athletic teams are nicknamed the Rangers. The Rangers compete in men's and women's basketball, baseball, softball, cross country running, golf, rodeo, soccer, and volleyball. The basketball teams play at Ron Butler Gymnasium. The baseball team plays at Ellis Burks Field, named after Ranger College alumnus and retired Major League Baseball player Ellis Burks.
In 1978 the Ranger College football team won the NJCAA national championship.
In June 2007, Ranger College won the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association men's team title in the College National Finals Rodeo held in Casper, Wyoming. Ranger had only been competing again since 2005, after a 25-year hiatus.
In August 2007, Ranger replaced its football program with men's and women's soccer and men's golf programs. The football team finished the year with a record of 4 wins and 5 losses; the team was unable to compete its schedule due to ineligibility issues.
In 2013 the Ranger College men's soccer team won the NJCAA Region V Championship and participated in the NJCAA Division I national tournament.
In 2015-16 the men's basketball team was found to have committed two eligibility violations. The first instance caused them to forfeit four games. The second and more serious violation required them to forfeit all games from the 2015-2016 season  and to be placed on probation by the NJCAA for the 2016-17 season, meaning they were barred from any post-season play in 2016-17.
In June 2016, Ranger earned a College National Finals Rodeo championship when sophomore heeler Wesley Thorp won the team roping event, with partner Cole Weeler of Weatherford College.
Former MLB player Jim Morris was drafted out of Ranger College by the Milwaukee Brewers in 1983. Morris' unique journey through professional baseball was depicted in the 2002 Disney film The Rookie.
Other notable figures who graduated from Ranger College include National Football League wide receiver Johnny Perkins and NCAA coach Billy Gillispie, who returned to the school in 2015 as its athletic director and men's head basketball coach.
- , Ranger College official website.
- "Education Code Chapter 130. Junior College Districts". Retrieved 27 September 2017.
- "Letter to the Honorable Joe Straus" (PDF). tacc.org. January 24, 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 4, 2016. Retrieved September 15, 2015.
- Ranger College Rangers Athletics Home
- Associated Press (2007-06-17). "Young Texas team takes CNFR titles". The Dallas Morning News. Retrieved 2007-06-18.
- Kanode, Susan (2007-06-17). "Ranger reigns after restarting program". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Retrieved 2007-06-18.[dead link]
- Stowers, Carlton (August 14, 2007). "Ranger rids itself of football". Abilene Reporter-News. Archived from the original on April 15, 2015. Retrieved April 9, 2015.
- "Ranger College Alumni Page". Ballcharts.com. Retrieved 2012-01-21.