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SMC to Showcase New Malibu Campus

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By Lookout Staff

April 4, 2023 -- Nearly seven years after passing one of its last major hurdles, Santa Monica College's new Malibu campus will hold an open house this month to showcase the three-acre campus that has been 20 years in the making.

Nestled in a leafy stretch in Malibu’s Civic Center area, the 25,000-square-foot campus began serving students on February 13, the first day of SMC’s spring 2023 semester.

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The open house to be held on Saturday, April 22 from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. will include live class demonstrations and tours of the campus that features a two-story 20,000-square-foot educational building and a one-story wing that will house a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s substation.

The facility includes a dedicated art studio and a classroom for science, a multipurpose physical activity space that can double as an emergency operations center, a 100-seat lecture hall, a computer lab and two general education classrooms.

Exterior of main education building ( Photos courtesy SMC)

“I am delighted to announce the inaugural opening of SMC’s new Malibu Campus that is already serving over 400 students, enrolled in a wide range of classes," said SMC Superintendent/President Dr. Kathryn E. Jeffery.

The campus, Jeffery said, "will stand here for years to come as a representation of Santa Monica College’s commitment to bringing affordable, world-class education to Malibu.”

Malibu Mayor Bruce Silverstein touted the campus for its educational opportunities and public safety enhancements.

“The new Santa Monica College campus offers opportunities for Malibu students to begin their college education and for adults to take a wide range of non-credit and community courses right here in Malibu,” Silverstein said.

“The campus also brings public safety enhancements to Malibu with the EOC and Sheriff’s Substation, as well as community meeting and event facilities that will enrich our community.”

The new substation marks the first time in three decades that Malibu has had a police substation within city limits.

A Malibu campus was proposed as part of an SMC District (which includes Santa Monica and Malibu) bond measure that went before voters and was approved in November 2004.

SMC also contributed $2.5 million for the acquisition of Legacy Park, which serves as a storage site for storm water, and an additional $2.5 million towards facilities for the treatment of wastewater, school officials said.

Opened in October 2010 immediately to the south of the campus site, the 15-acre Legacy Park "is considered one of the most innovative urban runoff and storm water projects in California, and has won numerous awards," SMC officials said.

SMC Malibu Campus longshot
SMC Maliby campus nestled near the Civic Center (Courtesy SMC)

The campus, designed by QDG Architecture with numerous sustainability features, fulfills the city’s “dark skies” standards, officials said.

In the 1970s and early 1980s the college offered a full program of about 70 general education classes in Malibu.

More recently, it offered classes at the Malibu Senior Center in City Hall as part of the college’s Emeritus Program and evening credit classes at Webster Elementary School.

“Since the first moment the Malibu Campus opened its doors to students and community members, we have heard nothing but pure exuberance about this campus and what it means for the community,” said Alice Meyering, SMC Associate Dean for Malibu.

“It’s a project 20 years in the making and it’s finally here and open to the public."

For more information on the April 22 open house or the campus in general, email or visit

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