Ever since middle school, I noticed that when the words, “community college” were brought up, there was never a good reaction from my friends or other students, and I always wondered why. Society has painted this picture that if you go to community college you either can’t afford it or you weren’t accepted to any huge universities. I was curious to know if all these assumptions and opinions were true or if there are benefits going to a two-year college.
Community college has gotten a bad reputation over the years, but there are some advantages to going to a junior college, rather than a big four-year university. Students can save big on their education and have a more flexible schedule.
According to Hocking college, “Students who attend 2-year schools to complete a 4-year degree can save upwards of $30,000 in student debt.” Following with, “In 2016-2017, the average annual community college tuition was $9,674 while average tuition at public four-year institutions was $23,705. Private 4-year institutions were even more costly, coming in at $48,865.”
Students can take the advantage of this financial situation and spend a fraction of the cost opposed to a university. Classes cost less which gives more of an opportunity to figure out their interests and what they might want to pursue. With this gain, by the end of the 2 years, the chance for students to end up with debt is very slim. Community college also aids students with jobs with lighter workloads and flexible schedules.
“Taking a full course load and graduating in four years isn’t an option for all students. Teens who need to work a full-time job, help a sick family member or tend to their own learning and physical disabilities can benefit from the flexibility that the community college provide” Says a source from U.S. NEWS. “Class schedules may be more diverse at community colleges and can include weekend and night classes to accommodate local residents who need to work, experts say.”
Students who are juggling with family, school and a job clearly have an opportunity to do it all through community college. These colleges are accustomed to adult students which gives them the chance to invest their time outside of school with the light workload. This compared to 4-year universities where you have to give your full attention to the overwhelming number of assignments and can’t involve yourself with a job, family, etc.
Community College Review says, “Community college has become a viable option for many high school graduates today. Whether you know what you want to do when you grow up or simply want time to explore your options, the local community college may be the right start on the road to a bright future.”
After diving deeper and exploring my true fascination and curiosity about community college, it’s not as bad as society portrays it to be. In today’s world, these two-year colleges are illustrated as they are not “up to par” with being a valuable and useful school to go too compared to big time universities when you can receive the same education. The myths and misconceptions about community college clearly plays a crucial role as society labels it as a “second class contender” leading students and their families to stray away. The stigma around community college is why many question what makes these institutions so bad after all. Community college should receive the same promotion and light as success lies in these types of schools as they guide a strong, diverse group of students that have all come from different walks of life.