Garden City Community College and Colby Community College administrators signed a memorandum of understanding Monday that will forge a partnership between the two institutions and expand GCCC's fire science to the Colby area.

The new agreement will allow students living and working in the Colby Community College service area to take general education credits through Colby and fire science credits remotely through GCCC, according to a press release. Participants will also have the opportunity to complete a fire science certificate through GCCC as part of the agreement. GCCC will develop a fire science pathway and provide fire science instruction and certifications for the Colby area, including area fire departments.

In the release, GCCC president thanked Colby administrators President Seth Carter and Vice President for Instruction and Student Services Brad Bennett, GCCC fire science instructor Larry Pander, GCCC Dean of Technical Education and Workforce Development Chuck Pfeifer and GCCC Vice President for Instruction Marc Malone for their contributions to the agreement.

“Going forward, we must continue to work collaboratively and provide pathways for training and higher learning, specifically with programs that are unique to our community colleges. GCCC offers the only Fire Science program in Western Kansas, and we have identified the need to develop highly qualified and trained individuals in Western Kansas," Ruda said in the release.

For more information about the agreement or GCCC fire science enrollment, contact Pfeifer at or Pander at