Perimeter College is part of Georgia State University, a diverse, multi-campus urban research university in metropolitan Atlanta. The college is the major provider of associate degrees and student transfer opportunities in Georgia and a gateway to higher education, easing students’ entry into college-level study.
More than 21,000 students, representing all ages and backgrounds, are enrolled in Perimeter College. Through the college, Georgia State serves the largest number of dual enrollment, international, online, transfer and first-time freshman students in the University System of Georgia. High-achieving students gain access to a strong honors program. Military students and veterans find support at the university’s Military Outreach Center, recognized as one of the best in the country.
With more than 3,300 international students from 150 countries, the college provides English as a Second Language courses, as well as robust tutoring centers on all campuses to promote academic success for all students.
Courses are offered online and at five campuses with options to earn associate degrees from Georgia State in more than 30 areas of concentration. Students who successfully complete their tracks of study can graduate with an associate of science, associate of arts or an associate of applied science degree. Because Perimeter College is part of Georgia State, students who earn their associate degree can seamlessly transition into another college at the university to complete their bachelor’s degree.
The college also offers areas of concentration—nursing, dental hygiene and radiologic technology—in which students are prepared for immediate careers.
Georgia State campuses provide students attending Perimeter College an active environment, with a wide range of opportunities. Clubs and organizations, student life events, and health and wellness programs round out the college experience.
A Rich History in Metro Atlanta
Perimeter College was founded in 1964 as DeKalb College, a two-year college in Clarkston governed by the DeKalb County Board of Education. The institution grew, opening additional campuses in the county before becoming part of the University System of Georgia in 1986. The college continued to expand and, in 1998, changed its name to Georgia Perimeter College to reflect its broad footprint in the metro Atlanta area.
In 2015, the Board of Regents announced plans to consolidate Georgia Perimeter College with Georgia State University, a move approved in January 2016. Georgia Perimeter College became Perimeter College, the ninth college within Georgia State University. The consolidation created the largest university in Georgia and one of the largest in the nation.
Prior to the consolidation, Georgia State and Georgia Perimeter already shared a history forged in part by students. Nearly 1,500 Georgia Perimeter students annually transferred to Georgia State, performing at an academic level equivalent to students who began their four-year program at Georgia State. The institutions also shared common interests, among them the goal of helping students of all backgrounds achieve academic success.
Benefiting the Community
Perimeter College’s impact does not end at its campuses’ borders. Students, faculty and staff participate in volunteer and service-learning programs benefiting their communities.
The college’s Dental Hygiene Clinic, staffed by second-year students, provides low-cost dental hygiene care and education to the public. Students also give free dental care to migrant workers and elementary school students through state-sponsored events.
In Project Shine, Perimeter students tutor refugees from Bhutan, Myanmar, Somalia and other areas, helping them toward citizenship by teaching them English.
The DeKalb Symphony Orchestra makes its home at the Perimeter College’s Clarkston Campus, and the college’s Fine Arts program presents plays, art exhibits and musical performances open to the public.
The Perimeter College Botanical Garden, cited by the National Garden Club as one of the top gardens in the nation, includes a native plant garden and an internationally renowned Ferns of the World garden at the Decatur Campus.
The Perimeter Possibilities
More than 350,000 students have started their educational journey at Perimeter College, moving on to become sign language interpreters, nurses, authors, business executives, opera singers and aerospace engineers.