Its history goes back to1911, when it started as the Camarines Sur Trade School (CSTS). Mr. Pedro Hidalgo organized trade courses in the intermediate level, offering carpentry, drawing and trade arts. Classes were first held at the library hall of the Camarines Sur High School. In 1924, it started offering Vocational courses in the Secondary level under Mr. Doroteo Federis.
In November 1925, the first permanent school building was constructed, the Gabaldon building, on its 25,699 sq. m. school site donated by the provincial government. This building still exists and is considered as the school’s historical landmark. Woodworking courses were also introduced during the term of Mr. Cornelio Casaclang, as Principal.
At the outbreak of World War II, the school principal was Mr. Romulo Y. Mendoza. In 1945, the school was re- opened under Mrs. Primitiva Obias as Officer- in- Charge until the reassignment of Mr. Cornelio Casaclang, Auto- mechanics, Building Construction and Furniture and Cabinet Making were offered. In 1948, during the administration of Oligario Lenon, girls trades courses in Dressmaking, Cosmetology and Food Trades were offered and with it the construction of buildings and shops
By virtue of House Bill no. 2919 (R.A. 825) , sponsored by Congressman Emilio Tible, and approved in August 15, 1952, the school was nationalized and renamed Camarines Sur National School of Arts and Trades (CSNSAT). Mr. Manuel T. Espinosa became its first Superintendent. In 1954, the two- year post- secondary trade- technical education was offered.
Upon its conversion to a full pledged college by virtue of R.A. No. 5056 sponsored by Cong. Ramon H. Felipe, Jr. in June 17, 1967, the CSNSAT was converted into a College and renamed as Bicol College of Arts and Trades (BCAT) and was authorized to offer courses like Bachelor of Science in Industrial Education (BSIE). This was during the term of Mr. Carlos Borjal, But before it formally assumed its name as BCAT, it was known as Camarines Sur National College of Arts and Trades (CSNCAT) until in the mid 1980’s when it adapted its name BCAT.
Tertiary level was immensely expanded to cover other fields of trade- technical education, thus the Bachelor of Science in Industrial Technology (BSIT) was opened in 1977. Under the Technical– Vocational Education Project (TVEP), it was selected as one of the pilot Technician Education Institutes (TEI) for Region V, by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports (MECS). The education component of the project was operationalized in school year 1984-1985, by the offering of the two- year Diploma in Industrial Technician (DIT) curriculum, with four major fields of specialization namely Automotive, Mechanical, Electrical , and Refrigeration and Air conditioning technologies.
In 1984, Dr. Pacita S. Yorobe temporarily headed the school. Five months later, in April 1, 1985, Superintendent Augusto R. Nieves took over—the second alumnus to achieve such status. In 1988, by virtue of DECS Order no. 39, s. 1988, the Teacher-Education component was expanded through the offering of the Bachelor of Secondary Education (BSEd), major in Technology and Home Economics (THE), Mathematics, English and Physics; and Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education (BEEd) with the area of specialization in Home Economics and Livelihood Education (HELE).
Under the administration of Mr. Honesto T. Aguilar, the 5th School Superintendent, BCAT started its offering of Engineering courses namely: Electrical Engineering (BSEE) Electronics and Communications Engineering (BSECE), Mechanical Engineering (BSME) and Bachelor of Science in Architecture (BSA). The institution had first Engineering and Architecture graduates last March, 2001 and until now had steadily produced board passers and board topnotchers
BCAT continued its bid for excellence in technology and teacher education under Mr. Pedro F. Moreno, the 6th Superintendent of the College. It remained undefeated during the annual Skills Olympic among TECHVOC schools in the Region. Its students maintained its dominance in the FFP-FAHP contests for high school students.
In December 2000, pursuant to Republic Act 8760, on the integration of CHED Supervised Institution (CSI’s) to State Universities and College (SUC’s) , the Bicol College of Arts and Trades was integrated to the Camarines Sur Polytechnic Colleges (CSPC) in Nabua, Camarines Sur. For more than 11 years, it existed as the CSPC Naga Campus under three Presidents, Dr. Lourdes B. Laniog (2000-2002), Dr. Monsito G. Ilarde (2002-2010) and Dr. Dukce F. Atian (2010-2012). Serving as Campus Directors were Dr. Amparo A. Nieves (2000-2002, 2003-2006), Dr. Alejandro R. Cortez (2002-2003) and Dr. Richard H. Cordial (2010-2012), who also became Campus Administrator before the conversion of the College.
In October 19, 2012, under the sponsorship of Cong. Luis R. Villafuerte of the 3rd District of Camarines Sur, Pres. Benigno Aquino III signed the passage of RA 10231 formally separating the school from CSPC and naming it the Bicol State College of Applied Sciences and Technology (BISCAST) with its first President, Dr. Richard H. Cordial.
The CSNCAT, the BCAT and then CSPC- Naga Campus, now BISCAST, takes pride in its distinguished history that saw the growth of this institution. Thousands of young men and women have passed through its portals and are now productive citizens or community leaders. It has survived more than 100 years as an institution of learning and served generations of Bikolanos. It remains to this day, a premier source of Engineering and Vocational Technology, Teacher Education, and Architecture. With its new mandate, it looks forward to enriching its programs in the Applied Sciences and Technology. With the spirit and dynamism of its present leaders and staff, it will continue to grow, serve and pursue its goals and commitment to the people of Bicol.