Does Community College Cost Less And How Much Can You Save Going To Community College
Attending community college costs much less than going to a four-year university for several reasons. First, since most community colleges dont have on-campus dorms, you can save on room and board costs, which can add up to thousands a year. For example, going to an in-state public university will cost an average of $11,510 for room and board per year. However, if you live at home and commute to a community college, you wont have to pay for room and board. Even at the handful of public two-year colleges with dorms, annual costs for room and board only averaged $8,990 for the 2019-2020 school year.
Another way you can save money by attending a community college is the lower cost of tuition. Those attending a community college or two-year in-state college averaged $3,700 in tuition for the 2019-2020 school year. Compare that to public, in-state four-year universities, which charged $10,440 per year.
The rates for two-year colleges depend greatly on the region where you attend school. However, even going to a community college in the priciest states costs much less than going to a four-year university. For example, Massachusetts ranks fourth in the nation for the highest community college tuition. But, because universities also cost more in the region, the savings of going to a two-year college compares to other parts of the country.
Some Universities Require On
A contributor to the high costs of many universities is the requirement for non-local freshmen to live in campus housing. Some schools may require students to live on campus after their first year, too. While you will learn many things about becoming an independent adult living in dorms, you will also have to pay the cost of thousands of dollars in living expenses. For those who live on campus, universities may also require the students to purchase a minimum meal plan.
If you dont want to live in a dorm, you may need to live in the same town as the university. Otherwise, you may not have an option to avoid living on campus at some four-year colleges.
Ability To Play College
If you want to play college-level sports for four years, you will find more options at universities. Many community colleges dont have sports teams. Even if you play sports for a local amateur league, you will not get the competitiveness you will find from playing sports at a four-year university. Other types of competitive activities such as band performance or orchestras are also more common in universities than in smaller two-year schools.
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Why Community College Is Almost Always The Smart Decision
- Trade skill
- If you are interested in a trade field, then you should definitely consider community college. Although community colleges dont offer 4 year degrees, they offer lots of 2 year degrees. There are lots of trade skills that are being taught at a community college. The best part about trade fields is you dont have to worry about the ridiculous cost of Universities. All trade skills students have to think about is the cost of community college.
- Higher degree
- Even if you want more than two year degree, community college is still a smart choice to make. The first two years are general courses that can be taken at community college. So you just end up saving by taking those classes at a community college. Then when it comes time to transfer, you can.
I dont know anybody who doesnt love saving thousands of dollars while still having quality education. Thats the option community college gives you. Lots of students pick university because of the stigma community college gets. You need to understand both institutions are businesses and making profit is on top of their agenda. So it is smart to save as much as you can. Community colleges give you that option.
Do employers care if you went to a community college?
Youre Not Sure About Going To College
A lot of high school students have a sense that they should go to college , but they arent sure why and arent really fond of school. If this describes you, community college can be a good option. You can try out some college-level courses without committing years of your life and tens of thousands of dollars to the experiment. Unmotivated students rarely succeed in college, so don’t go into debt and waste the time and money required to attend an expensive four-year college.
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Smaller College Class Size
At community colleges, you often dont have to deal with large lecture classes. In fact, at The Mount, the school maintains an average 12-to-1 student to instructor ratio. University courses may include classes students attend with hundreds of others in a lecture hall or auditorium. If you want more interaction with your instructor during class, a community college can serve you better.
It’s Hard To Make Friends At Community College Even When You’re An Active Socialite
Most students are only concerned with working and getting the grades at community college so they can advance to a university. Everyone seems to be 100 percent focused on the future and where they’ll end up, rather than where they are in the present moment. Even if you try and talk to people, most are in their own little world with their eyes on the future, not on the now.
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The Top 3 Reasons To Go To A 4
For some students, going straight to a four-year university is the best choice for them. If youre on the fence about whether to start at community college or go to a four-year college right out of the gate, consider these top three reasons to go to a four-year college from the start: advanced academic offerings, vibrant campus life, and kickstarting your long-term professional goals.
The Classes Wont Be As Good
Ive heard this community college myth over and over again. Many people think that the classes wont be good enough for them. That is usually far from the case, though. Your first two years, no matter where you go, are most likely going to consist of very generic classes or classes that are similar, if not the same, as ones at the four-year college you are thinking about attending.
Its usually not until the last two years, after you get those beginner classes and electives out of the way, that your classes really begin to matter for your degree.
And, if youre afraid you really need more of those beginner classes from a four-year college, I recommend at least taking a summer semester or two at your community college for elective classes. There are usually lots of elective options at community college, and you can at least take those at a more affordable rate. That is exactly what I did one summer while I was attending my four-year college, I enrolled at the community college for a bunch of electives. I was able to easily, and affordably, knock out a bunch of electives.
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Can My Child Earn Credentials At A Community College
Your student can earn an associate degree and post-secondary certificates at community colleges. Associate degrees are typically 60 credits and take two years to complete. Certificates can take anywhere from a few months to several years. A growing number of community colleges are offering bachelors degrees, but not all.
Know What Courses To Take For A Smooth Transfer
When you take a trip, its important to follow the GPS or road map carefully to avoid getting lost and losing time retracing your steps. The same principle applies when it comes to maximizing transfer credits between community college and bachelors degree programs.
At the same time, students should also focus on the academic merit of each community college they consider. Some community colleges offer two-year degrees that can result in employment opportunities for savvy students. This can give students time to work and save money for a four-year degree.
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Reset Your Academic Reputation From High School
Low grades in high school should not keep you from pursuing your higher education aspirations. Community college is a great way to reset your academic reputation. For instance, if you had a low GPA in high school or low SAT scores, you might not qualify immediately to get into the four-year university you want to attend. In fact, a majority of transfer students into universities came from community colleges.
For transfer applications, universities put less emphasis on high school GPA than on your grades in higher education. Therefore, if you put as much effort as possible into getting the best grades you can get in community college, you can improve your chances of transferring to a four-year university, even if your high school grades were low.
The Advantages Of Going To A 4
Overall, going to a four-year university is significantly better than community college.
Here are the key advantages that stand out to me:
- Better quality education
- More opportunities
Youll Learn More at a 4-Year University
While I dont think universities provide an education that prepares you for success in life they at least do a better job than community college. Sure, there are plenty of bullshit liberal arts programs and a lot of the business courses I took were a complete joke.
But, universities do have some intelligent professors that genuinely care to challenge you and teach you something useful.
Youll Have More Fun at a 4-Year University
Aside from a better education, which is obvious, another major advantage is the social life. The college experience that people talk about happens outside of class.
If youre only going to college to get your degree, its going to be a long, boring four years.
Your college degree is just a piece of paper that ultimately becomes a check mark on your resume. Unless you graduate from an Ivy League school, no one gives a shit about your degree they just care that you have it.
If youre going to be there for four to five years, you might as well have fun and make the most of your time.
At universities, theres a wider diversity of people which makes it easier to find people with a similar mindset.
You will find more people that are actually interesting and can hold an intelligent, thoughtful conversation.
Just think about it.
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Lets take a look at some of the advantages of community college and how to choose which community college best fits a students needs. The information below is designed to help students who are considering going to community college first.
Should I Go To Community College First
Should I go to a community college? Well, that’s up to you. Hopefully, we can help make the decision easier for you with this post on going to community college first.
If you’re already going to community college, you can check out our post Is It Better To Go To Community College First?
To start off, we’ll cover some of the major reasons why community college would be right for you. Then, we’ll give you some more resources to make your decision. Please let us know if you have more questions by posting in the comments below.
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Does Community College Make University Applications Easier
If your child takes advantage of all the resources that their community college has to offer, it can make the process of applying to a four-year university much smoother.
Its worth seeking assistance at the career center, where your child can apply for internships and work-study opportunities, experiences that can make them more desirable to four-year colleges.
Visiting the career transfer office can help your child in creating a specially guided plan so they have a clear goal to progress toward. They can network with transfer advisors and speak to professors in their intended academic field.
Going to office hours can open doors to opportunities, advice, and extracurricular learning. Getting involved on campus can often help make them a stronger transfer fit.
Your child should speak to transfer advisors at the four-year colleges they plan to transfer to and ask what courses they recommend.. Its important to take community college classes seriously. Encourage them to show up on time, study hard, and maintain a good GPA this can prepare them for what they should expect at a four-year school.
Is There A Stigma
Do you believe there is a negative stigma surrounding students going to a community college instead of a four-year university?
Yes, unfortunately, for some people there may be a bit of a negative stigma associated with going to a community college. This is likely due to the fact that some measures of success, like lifetime salary earnings, are more likely for graduates of four-year institutions.
There are many different paths to success depending on your student. Universities ultimately want individuals to find a passion for learning and skills that are transferable to a career, and develop a healthy, growth-oriented mindset. If that means starting at a community college to find those things, thats fine your application wont be judged any differently than someone who comes to university right after high school.
From a purely practical standpoint, community college may be a better option to begin with than a four-year university in cases where a student might feel academically unprepared for the rigor of a four-year university or if the family is not financially ready.
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Community College Wont Actually Save Me That Much Money
I want to repeat, the average yearly tuition and fees for a:
- Private four-year college is $32,410.
- Public four-year college for out-of-state students is $23,890.
- Public four-year college for in-state students is $9,410.
And, community college is $3,440.
As you can see, college tuition is a significant amount of money, and it is a drastic difference between four-year institutions and community college.
Now, the problem here is that many people afford college by taking out student loans, so the amount of money you are paying for college isnt an immediate thing that you feel because its all debt!
Note: If you are a parent and you are thinking about taking on debt to put your child through school, please, please, please consider having them attend community college first. Please, also read Should I Ruin My Retirement By Helping My Child Through College?
The Negatives Of Going To A 4
University life is better overall, but it comes with some downsides as well.
A few of the key negatives that stand out are:
- Cost of tuition
- Liberal propaganda and PC culture
- Greek life
Youll Spend More at a 4-Year University
The cost of tuition at universities is significantly higher than community college and its rising every year.
Granted, youre getting a better education and a bachelors degree instead of an associates degree. However, the increased cost far exceeds the increased value of your degree.
Unless youre getting a STEM degree, youre going directly to Wall Street, or you get a solid sales job you wont be making much immediately after college.
But KW, didnt you make six figures your first year out of college?
Yes, but Im not afraid to admit that there was some luck involved in my situation. It was a combination of hard work, timing, and seizing the right opportunity.
Even before oil prices tanked, the scenario that got me my start in the oil business no longer existed.
Im all for starting your own business and having high ambitions, but realistically, most people are going to need to get a more traditional job directly out of college.
And the majority of bachelors degrees DONT lead to high starting salaries.
If youre paying for your own education, you can save thousands of dollars by going to community college for your first two years.
Liberal Propaganda and PC Culture Will Brainwash You
Its to the point that its just retarded.
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Community College Vs University
The main distinction between a community college and a university is the length of their curricula.
The majority of community colleges offer two-year degrees called associateâs degree, whereas universities offer four-year degrees, namely bachelorâs degree. Universities also offer a masterâs program which community colleges normally donât.
Now there are exceptions to the rule, and in rare instances, a community college might offer a four-year program and there is even one community college that offers a masterâs degree. This is what confuses some students in differentiating between the institutions.
A community college, on the other hand, is most recognized for its short-term certificate and associate’s degree programs.
Students For Whom Community College Is A Good Fit
While there are tradeoffs to going to community college before transferring to a bachelors program, some students will find it is truly the best fit for their needs. How do you know if its the best fit for yours?
Not Academically Ready
Some students arent academically ready for a four-year college after high school. If your transcript is mostly made up of Cs and Ds, attending community college can help bridge the rigor gap between high school and college courses so you can make the most of all four years of your education. In a community college environment, youll have the time and space to work on your study and time management skills without the risks of going directly into a four-year program. This can also apply to you if your SAT score is below 750 or your ACT score is below 13.
Close to Home
Another reason community college might be a good fit for you is if you need to stay close to home. Oftentimes, this is because a student cares for a loved one or contributes to the family income. If you live near your ideal four-year school, thats great! But if you need to be close to home and thats not an option, community colleges exist within 10 miles of most urban and even suburban areas. Attending one for your first two years can allow you to make progress on your education. An additional benefit is that community college course schedules often offer flexibility, allowing you to take classes part-time if needed .
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