So you’re thinking about college, but you’re anxious about how much money it costs to go to a university. Understandable. The tuition at universities feels like it is always getting raised, and when you look at the averages for student loan debt, it is even more terrifying.
I have gone to community college, and to a university, and to a graduate program. And I can tell you for a fact that there are some huge benefits to going to a community college.
1. It’s far cheaper. This is just an undisputed fact, and while that might make you feel like community college is not a “real” college, that idea couldn’t be further from the truth. The people that work at community colleges work hard to keep education affordable, and to keep the quality of education up. Having had family and friends who work at community colleges, I can tell you that the whole idea is that education shouldn’t have such a giant price tag. Everyone deserves knowledge and shouldn’t have to pay a hundred grand to get it. So not only is community college cheaper, but it is idealistically so.
2. You can work it around your schedule. The other great thing about community college is that there are far more flexible hours offered for some of the most important classes. If you have a job, or kids, or plan on having a job or kids, a big university is not going to be as willing work with you as a community college will. They understand that there are people in the community who have day jobs and need to go to night classes. Community college is all around a lot easier to fit into your schedule.
3. You can get all your gen eds out of the way. One of the biggest perks about community college is that you can take all your gen eds before you go off to a university. You don’t have to do that of course, but for anyone who is considering doing community college just for a little while before they figure out what they want to do and where they want to go, good news: that’s actually really smart. If you get all your gen eds out of the way at a community college (with an associate’s degree), then when you go to a university you can focus on what you’re passionate about.