Offering low tuition, small classes, and diverse degree programs, community colleges are increasingly becoming a smart choice for many students.
As she planned for college, Christina Brodzky knew that money would be tight. So she decided to enroll at Orange County Community College in Middletown, New York, with the ultimate goal of transferring to a four-year school.
The strategy worked well. Brodzky was able to complete the same types of classes she would have taken during the first couple of years at a four-year college, with much less expense. And she was pleased with the quality of her experience. “My classes were demanding,” she says. “And I was very well prepared when I transferred.”
After two years at Orange County, Brodzky went on to complete her bachelor’s degree at Marist College. Now she’s following her dream of working in advertising in New York City. “Starting at a community college was a smart idea,” she says. “I saved money while still receiving a great education.”
If you’ve never considered pursuing a two-year degree, don’t rule it out. More and more students are finding two-year colleges a great alternative to going directly to a traditional four-year school.
According to the American Association of Community Colleges, over 40% of all college students begin their studies at two-year schools. Last year, these schools awarded approximately 555,000 associate (two-year) degrees.
At community, junior, and technical colleges across the country, students are enjoying advantages such as low tuition and small class sizes. Add to that diverse degree programs, hands-on occupational training, transfer options, and more, and it’s not surprising that two-year schools are attracting students from all kinds of backgrounds. Increasingly, this includes bright students who could attend four-year universities but prefer the setting of a two-year school.
“More and more excellent students are going to community college, for a variety of reasons,”...