H. Councill Trenholm State Technical College was created through the consolidation of John M. Patterson State Technical College with H. Councill Trenholm State Technical College. On April 27, 2000, the Alabama State Board of Education, upon the recommendation of the Chancellor of Postsecondary Education, approved the intent to merge. Since both colleges were technical colleges, the merger did not alter that status or result in any change in the role of the new entity.
The Chancellor of Postsecondary Education appointed Dr. Alma Freeman, Interim President of the newly created technical college on April 20, 2001. Dr. Larry McCoy, Interim Provost was also appointed by the Chancellor to oversee the consolidation process.
On April 26, 2001 the Alabama State Board of Education voted to name the newly created entity H. Councill Trenholm State Technical College. The College maintains two campuses: the Patterson Campus and the Trenholm Campus. The two campuses are only 8.9 miles apart. The College operates 12 months a year on a semester system, with 206 instructional days per year. It is approved for the training of veterans, and the programs are approved for federal financial aid.
Effective November 19, 2001, Dr. Anthony L. Molina was appointed President of H. Councill Trenholm State Technical College. The President administers the two major campuses and several instructional sites, 34 instructional programs and about 200 employees.
Both institutions were accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. On March 12, 2002, the Council on Occupational Education granted initial approval for the merger.
The two Colleges have a shared history in providing services for the same geographical area. In compliance with a U.S. Federal Court Order, courses were realigned in 1970 to eliminate program duplication between Patterson State Technical School and Trenholm State Technical School. Because of the court order, program offerings and personnel were shifted between the schools.
In the fall of 1989, the institutions initiated a collegiate schedule for all programs and courses. Each curriculum is composed of a series of discrete courses. Students register for and study specific courses each term. In the fall of 1998, the colleges changed from a quarter system to a semester system.