9 reasons to choose a community college

empty classroomThere’s a certain stigma attached to community colleges. Many people think that they are for lazy people that they can’t handle college work. The truth is that community colleges are real colleges. It’s not a free pass to getting a degree. Here are the top reasons for choosing a community college:

Improve your grades. If you had less than stellar grades in high school or you didn’t take challenging courses, this could be your chance to prove that you can handle college classes.

Explore different areas of study. If you know you’ll take a long time to figure out what you want to do, you might want to attend a community college first. It’ll be a lot cheaper than taking random classes at a four year institution and you won’t have to worry as much about prerequisites.

Prepare for a four-year college. Whether you’ll be homesick or you don’t feel mentally or academically prepared, community college could be your first step towards a four-year college.


>>Community college to four-year institution: what you need to know

Save money. Whether your ultimate goal is a bachelor’s, master’s, or PhD, all that school could be very costly. Community college could help you keep your student loans to a minimum.

Get a 2 year degree. Perhaps right now you’d just like to get your associate’s degree. Some four year colleges and universities do offer associate’s programs, but community colleges will offer the best value.

Decent paying part time job. Work study jobs in college usually don’t pay more than minimum wage. If you get a certificate or associate’s degree, you could get a better paying part time job while you work toward your bachelor’s.

Improve your skills. Whether it’s English, writing, math or science, you might want to brush up on your skills before starting at a four year college, especially if you didn’t take challenging courses in high school.

Smaller classes. If you take classes like Psychology 101 at a big university, you’ll be taking it with at least a couple hundred other students. If you want smaller class sizes, consider taking gen eds at a community college.

Flexible schedule. Community colleges are more likely to have evening, weekend, and online classes that will help you fit school into your schedule.


One thing you can do is apply to schools that allow you to defer enrollment. What you would do is apply to four year colleges or universities your senior year, choose the one you’d like to attend, and defer your enrollment. This means you are already accepted into the school, but you’ll be attending a year later. You can then use that year to take classes at a community college. This way you know exactly where you’ll be going so there’s no guessing which classes will transfer.

With a little planning, community college could save you thousands of dollars. Just don’t forget to consider where you might be going afterwards.


>>9 reasons to choose a four-year college


>>Community college to four-year institution: what you need to know