- Community college students save more money.
If you go to a four-year college right off the bat, you'll be shelling out a lot more in tuition, fees, room and board than you would at a two-year college. According to the American Association of Community Colleges, average annual tuition and fees at public community colleges are $2,191, compared to $5,491 at public four-year colleges. That's a $3,300 difference each year -- and let's not get started talking about private college tuition!
- Community college students save more time.
Finding your way at a two-year college makes good sense. At community colleges, you can feel free to explore a variety of subjects before committing to a course of study. Then, once you truly know what you want, you can commit to a bachelor's degree program and spend just two years at a four-year college as opposed to four, five, or even six.
- Community college students escape the college admission rat race.
While students attending traditional four-year colleges are sweating out their potential acceptance letters, you're saving your energy for other endeavors. That's because you know that open admission policies have guaranteed a place for you at a two-year college.
- Community college students have a better shot at getting into four-year colleges than other transfer students.
You read right. In California, for example, transfer students from community colleges receive first priority over other transfer applicants to the University of California and California State University, including applicants from four-year colleges and intercampus transfers. And that benefit isn't limited to the Golden State, either. Many community colleges have articulation agreements (a.k.a. guaranteed admission programs) with four-year colleges.
- Community college students enjoy a smoother transition to college and independence.
Many college students have floundered in their first years away from home, unsure how to handle their newfound freedom and squandering their parents' (or their own) money in the process. But when you choose a two-year college, you're able to experience college life in a more familiar environment, which allows you to ease into adulthood rather than dive in headfirst.In truth, community colleges enroll almost half of all undergraduate students in the U.S. Maybe you'll be one of them.