Community colleges are often overlooked by students when planning their path to a bachelor’s degree. Starting at a two-year college then transferring to a four-year institution provides several benefits, especially for three types of students.
- The cost conscious student. Saving thousands on tuition is one major benefit to beginning your degree at a community college. According to the 2015 Fact Sheet from the American Association of Community Colleges, annual tuition and fees for community colleges averaged to be $3,347, while four-year colleges averaged to be $9,139. Keep in mind, students who live at home also avoid two years of room and board costs. Community colleges offer flexible class schedules, making it possible for students to hold down full or part time jobs. Working while taking a full course load at a university is often challenging. In addition to earning some cash, work experience looks stellar on a college application.
- The indecisive student. Not all students have a major pinned down when they begin college. Those that wish to explore their options more freely would do well at a community college. At a two-year college, there is significantly less pressure to declare a major than at a four-year college. Community colleges also offer career counseling services to students. Advisors are there to help students find the careers most suitable for them based on their interests and academic strengths.
- The student with a poor academic performance. For those looking to improve their academic standing after high school, community college is your go to. Raising your grades and enhancing your extracurricular profile at a two-year college shows universities you can handle college-level coursework and have the determination needed to get a degree. This type of student will also benefit from the flexible schedules. With some spare time thrown in their weekly schedule, students have the opportunity to participate in campus clubs and events. Showing your involvement outside the classroom is a vital piece to your college application.