Black River Technical College was founded in 1971 on land donated by the City of Pocahontas, and was known as Black River Vocational Technical School. The school was under the supervision of the Arkansas State Board for Vocational Education. Since then, the initial enrollment of 38 students in 6 programs has grown to more than 3,000 students in 27 certificate programs and 16 associate degree programs. Many students also participate in continuing education courses offered by the college. The original 46,775 square footage situated on 44 acres has grown to 308,578 square feet with a total of 23 buildings on 100 acres.
The vocational school became the Black River Technical College in 1991, operating temporarily under the supervision of the Department of Higher Education. In 1993, the college became an independent institution of higher education. A board of trustees, appointed by the governor of Arkansas, serves as the governing board. The college is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, 30 North LaSalle Street, Suite 2400, Chicago, IL 60602, (312) 263-0456.