Availability In Your State
Only 24 states have made it possible for community colleges to offer bachelorâs degrees, as of November 2021. If you live in a state that has not made that option available and would like a four-year degree, itâs still possible to earn your associate degree at community college and apply to transfer to a four-year institution. Doing so could help reduce your overall tuition and fees.
Interested in finding out whether your state offers a community college bachelorâs degree? Check out this from the Community College Baccalaureate Association.
You Will Likely Need More Education
Community colleges focus on providing basic education, associate degrees, and career certificates. If you want a job that requires a bachelors degree, you will still need to go to a university after your time at community college. Community colleges are a good option to complete the basics required for most four-year degrees.
You may not have as many job opportunities as you would with a bachelors degree if you stop after getting a two-year associate degree. Luckily, most universities will allow you to transfer your credits or associate degree to their programs, so you can continue your education toward a bachelors degree or higher.
Some See Competition Others See Alternative To Transfer Hurdles
While proponents of community college baccalaureate pathways say the offerings increase affordability and create avenues to four-year degrees for underrepresented populations and far-flung communities, critics say the model could undermine public universities.
In Arizona, four-year institutions expressed concern that the new legislation does not require community colleges to collaborate with state universities in determining their baccalaureate offerings. Some two-year institutions such as Pima Community College have been vocal about their intent to continue their strong partnerships with state universities.
Experts say that competition is unlikely, given that community colleges and four-year universities tend to attract different types of students. California, for instance, says it has not experienced any detrimental competition since it launched a 15-school community college baccalaureate pilot program in 2014.
Similar programs in Washington state and Florida have shown that community college bachelors degree programs tend to attract adult learners, working learners, student parents, low-income students, first-generation students, and students of color.
The students who enroll in these programs are students who most likely would not have attended a four-year baccalaureate program, said Debra Bragg, a fellow at the think tank New America. Rather, they are students who need to stay local or students for whom transferring would have proven too burdensome.
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Resources For Finding Community College Scholarships And Other Aid
- Some community colleges offer their own scholarships. Check with the colleges financial aid office.
- Random drawings, such as the ones offered by ScholarshipPoints.com, can provide money for community college.
- Local community organizations, such as community foundations, may sponsor scholarships for community college students.
- Free online scholarship search services find scholarships that match the students background profile.
- Some cities and states offer promise scholarships that cover the cost of college for local high school graduates.
- The Federal Pell Grant provides thousands of dollars of free money to pay for college. Just file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid to apply.
- The federal government also offers the American Opportunity Tax Credit, which lets families claim a partially-refundable tax credit worth up to $2,500 based on amounts spent for tuition, fees and textbooks.
Insurance For Studying In The Us
It is vital to have a good insurance when you study in the US. Some colleges offer their own insurance, however their insurance is not mandatory there are usually better options. Read more about Study Abroad insurances.
To apply for a Community College you usually have to submit the following:
- The college’s application form
- Your high school diploma translated to English
- A copy of your passport
- Proof that you can finance your studies
- Proof that you have the required English level, for example a TOEFL or IELTS test.
Sometimes you also need to submit other documents like a personal letter. Each school has their own admission guidelines so make sure to check the application procedures of the college you are interested in.
We can help you to choose and apply to Community Colleges in the US. Fill out an information request to get help!
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Get Started On A Bachelor’s Degree
You can begin your college education at Hawaii Community College and easily transfer to a four-year university to earn a bachelors degree. We offer programs designed to make this process simple.
For example, if you earn an associate of arts in liberal arts, you can be automatically accepted as a junior at UH Mnoa, UH Hilo or UH West O’ahu with your general education requirements complete no need to reapply and no application fee. Several UH bachelor’s degrees are online, providing a convenient educational pathway.
Can Community Colleges Reinvigorate Apprenticeships
As career and technical education continues to get more attention from policymakers, education leaders, and the media, one valuable component of CTE often gets overlooked: apprenticeships. The Obama and Trump administrations both made efforts to boost interest in these career pathways, but participation remains low compared to other postsecondary options. In a report from the American Enterprise Institute, Jorge Klor de Alva and Mark Schneider survey the current state of apprenticeships in the U.S. and conclude that community colleges are best positioned to fertilize this particular landscape.
The authors pull from a variety of data sources to synthesize an overview of the current state of apprenticeship programs in the U.S. and internationally. They gather demographic information about apprentices from Department of Labor databases and from a 2012 Mathematica study on the social benefits of apprenticeships. They also draw inspiration from a number of international surveys and case studies.
de Alva and Schneider are right that community colleges find themselves in a great position to reinvigorate and grow apprenticeships as respected postsecondary pathways. It is perhaps optimistic to hope that every campus in the country will open its arms to non-traditional, less-measurable academic and credit requirements, but the vast potential of apprenticeships does indeed hinge on our willingness to be flexible.
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California Community Colleges To Advance Expand Bachelors Degree Programs
This post was updated Oct. 31 at 11:57 p.m.
A new state law creating bachelors degree programs at community colleges will reduce barriers and racial equity gaps, said a UCLA professor and representatives from the San Diego Community College District.
Gov. Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 927 into law Oct. 6. The new law makes permanent a pilot program offering bachelors degree programs at 15 community colleges including San Diego Mesa College, Rio Hondo College and Cyprus College. The law also allows other community colleges the opportunity to create bachelors degree programs.
In order for a bachelors degree program to be established at a community college, the California State University chancellor, the University of California president and the president of the Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities must assess the proposed program. The proposed bachelors degree program also cannot already be offered by the CSU or UC.
Previously, the 15 colleges were only allowed one bachelors degree program each and the piloted programs were set to accept their last cohort of students in the beginning of the 2022-2023 academic year, according to the legislation text.
Natalia Trinh, the student trustee for the SDCCD, said the new law opens up more opportunities for students to be able to receive a bachelors degree and that it would close racial, ethnic, background and financial equity gaps.
States Now Allow Community Colleges To Offer Bachelors Degrees
Arizona this week became the latest state to give community colleges the green light to offer four-year degrees. Twenty-four states now permit bachelors degree programs at community colleges, and others have expressed interest in the models potential to increase college access and help meet local workforce needs, Inside Higher Ed reports.
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What If Students Didnt Have To Leave Community Colleges To Earn Bachelors Degrees
By Rebecca KoenigApr 13, 2021
Students training at Miami Dade College.
Set a few miles from the sea and surrounded by swampy state parks, Indian River Community College was for years a lone outpost of higher education on Floridas Treasure Coast. The nearest universityFlorida Atlanticwas nearly 60 miles away, a long haul down I-95 for someone seeking more schooling but bound to her community by a home, a job, a family.
To drive an hour-and-a-half one way to take a course at a university at night and backit was just more than most families could handle, says Edwin Massey, president emeritus of Indian River.
To help more Florida residents earn advanced credentials, the state expanded its university system in the early 1990s. The Treasure Coast region was in the running for a new institutionbut the other side of the state won out.
People in the area started to wonder. They had a college down the street. Workers needed four-year degrees to get promotions. Hospitals needed nurses with management skills, and schools needed teachers trained in science and math. What, exactly, were they all waiting for?
The question I got most was, When will Indian River offer baccalaureate-level programs? Massey says.
And the pace of adoption is speeding up, with half a dozen states signing on since 2018, according to the Community College Baccalaureate Association.
We’re Not Producing Enough Graduates
Just 52% of Arizona’s 2018 high school graduates enrolled in higher education, according to the Board of Regents report released last year. Only 29% pursued a four-year degree, not even enough to replace degree holders who are retiring.
Certainly, not enough to support a growing state or a robust economy.
This bill should have passed decades ago but the research universities have killed it every time its come up, apparently uninterested in having to compete for students. The Board of Regents along with Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University opposed Senate Bill 1453.
Regents Executive Director John Arnold told a legislative panel in March that universities already partner with community colleges.
We dont need more capacity, we need more students to come through the existing pathways that are already there, Arnold told the House Education Committee.
Tell that to the kid who graduates with a shiny new baccalaureate degree and tens of thousands of dollars of debt.
The average tab for in-state tuition at the state’s three universities is about $11,900 a year, though many students qualify for financial aid. Full-time students at Maricopa Countys community colleges, meanwhile, pay $2,040 a year.
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List Of Community Colleges That Offer Bachelor Degrees
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Community College Vs University: Pros And Cons
Choosing a school for higher learning involves more than picking which university to attend. In fact, when you understand the difference between community college and university, you may find you want to choose community college to save money and have better flexibility. When comparing two-year vs. four-year college, always examine both the pros and cons of each to make your final decision. By looking at advantages and disadvantages of each, you can have the information needed to make the most informed decision for your life and education needs.
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Why The First Varsity Blues Trial Really Matters
Opponents cite these objections to expanding community college degrees:
As a result of these arguments, most states, like Arizona, have placed various conditions on two-year schools offering four-year degrees. Common constraints include: proving that program duplication will not occur, limiting the number of institutions authorized to offer the degrees, specifying the degree programs that will be allowed, capping the tuition that can be charged, and establishing an economic/workforce need by employers, communities or regions before green-lighting a new program.
How Are They Different From Universities
One thing that separates the two programs is that community colleges are not trying to be exactly like most four-year colleges.
Most community colleges offering bachelorâs programs are offering it as an extension to their associateâs degree. This means that a student would have to complete their associateâs degree first, in order to be eligible for a bachelorâs program at that same community college.
Community colleges also have limited bachelorâs programs available. This is because they prefer to offer degrees that can place students directly into the workforce. In tune with traditional community college values, these bachelorâs programs are profession-orientated.
The most common kinds of bachelorâs degrees offered at community colleges include specific fields like nursing, information technology, and radiology.
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Complete Your Bachelor’s At Slcc
Salt Lake Community College has partnered with select four-year institutions to provide an opportunity for students to complete a bachelor’s degree while remaining on SLCC campuses. University Partnerships acts as a host for the baccalaureate programs and their faculty and students.
Bachelor’s program courses are held online and evenings to meet the needs of non-traditional students. Classes are usually held Monday through Thursday, and are taught by professors from the four-year institutions.
Students must apply for admission to the institution offering the bachelor’s degree program. Do not apply to SLCC for admission to baccalaureate programs hosted by University Partnerships.
Tuition rates are set by the institutions offering the bachelor’s degrees, and tuition is paid directly to them. SLCC does not set the tuition rates nor does SLCC accept tuition payment for the four-year institutions.
Upon completion of a bachelor’s program, degrees are awarded by the four-year institution.
More Costly To Fund An Education
The biggest concern for many when attending a four-year university is the cost. As noted, universities have a much higher per year cost. Much of this cost includes additional fees the university charges for housing, meal plans and special programs. The extra amenities offered at a university come at a cost.
While you might save some money attending a public school in your home state, the average cost per year of that option is still $10,560. Youll likely spend more than this amount if you go to a public university as an in-state student. The costs for education at a university increase if you attend a school outside your home state. Out-of-state students at public universities spend an average of $27,020 a year. Private universities cost the most, with an average annual cost of $37,650.
These amounts only include tuition and fees and not housing, food, supplies and books. A more accurate total cost for the average student attending various types of universities for the 2020-2021 school year are as follows:
- In-state public university: $26,820
- Out-of-state public university: $43,280
- Private university: $54,880
Consequently, actual budgets almost double the listed tuition and fees when comparing the costs of various universities. The high cost of universities and the salaries for jobs available after graduation can make the return on a university degree profitable for some and a loss for others.
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Who Should Not Study At Community College
While studying at Community College can be a good option for many international students it is not right for everyone. If you match one or more of the criteria below you might be better of looking for other options.
- If you have already studied at university level: if you have already studied for a couple of years at university most community colleges will not be able to offer you classes at a higher level and community college might feel like a step backwards for you.
- If you want to top up your CV: if you only want to take a semester or two abroad to top up your CV you will be better of studying at a university and preferably taking a degree. Studying at a Community College will give you valuable study abroad experience but the status is lower than a university, not least in the eyes of American employers.
- Top students: if you are an ambitious student with very high grades a Community College might not be the right option for you and you might be better off applying for a high ranking university and trying to get a scholarship.