The Philip Ciarco Jr. Learning Center
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Bergen Community College in Hackensack - The Philip Ciarco Jr., Learning Center

Sandra Sroka, Dean

Denise Liguori, Dean of Student Services

Our History

Located at 355 Main Street in Hackensack, The Adult Learning Center was founded by Bergen Community College in 1970 with the primary mission of providing educational and support services for adults seeking high school equivalency education or English as a Second Language (ESL). In 1999, the Adult Learning Center was renamed the Philip Ciarco Jr. Learning Center by Philip Ciarco, Jr., in honor of his father, Philip Ciarco. Mr. Ciarco Jr., and his wife, Kathleen, established a lasting tribute to the life of the senior Ciarco who had left school to work at the age of 13.Mr. Ciarco, Jr., and his sister pledged a generous bequest of $500,000 to support an endowed scholarship fund to enable deserving students to receive the education that Mr. Ciarco's father never had the opportunity to receive.

In addition to the Ciarco family’s tremendous generosity, Kathleen Ciarco is an alumnus of BCC’s Early Childhood Education program and Philip Ciarco Jr. is an esteemed member of the Bergen Community College Foundation, the fundraising arm of the College.

Since its inception, thousands of adults have completed coursework that has improved their quality of life through language acquisition, acculturation, and the development of workplace skills for employment and job advancement. A testimony to the success of Bergen Community College in Hackensack is the significant number of students who have gone on to obtain bachelors and master’s degrees and other post secondary training.

Today, in addition to high school equivalency education and ESL, the College offers college credit courses, non-degree credit courses, Flexible Start accelerated credit courses, American Language Program (ALP) courses, employment preparation and job training, and a wide variety of other general education, certificate and degree classes. We provide on- site academic and admission counselors in order to aid students in their future goals of transition from non degree programs to degree programs or in reaching their employment and career goals.

All of our courses and programs may be completed in a spacious, modern, and welcoming environment in vibrant, downtown Hackensack. The Ciarco Center provides six (6) state-of-the-art computer labs, numerous Smart Classrooms, and a new Tutoring and Language Center. The Ciarco Center is an official, GED Testing Site. We are easily accessible by public transportation or car. Ample parking is available.