Know Before You Go: Community College Edition

If you are considering a community college, you probably have more than just a few questions. Our goal is to answer your questions, help you make informed decisions, and get you started on a path to success in community college and beyond.

What you need to know about community college.
The benefits and value of community college.

The benefits and value of community college

An often-overlooked option for graduating high school students may be hiding right under your nose—your local community or technical college.

What can community college do for you?

Community colleges have both the flexible options and affordability to help you reach your goals, whatever they may be. Whether you’re planning on immediately entering the workforce, earning your bachelor’s degree, or you’re still finding your path, community colleges have options for every student.

Community colleges boast a generally low student-to-teacher ratio, a diverse student body from all walks of life, flexible course offerings with different time slots to suit your schedule, and curricula designed to prepare you for your next steps.

What is the value in attending community college?

The low price tag on community colleges is often mistakenly thought to mean a low value. The reality is these accredited institutions are often just as challenging as universities with more selective acceptance rates, and the credits earned at them will transfer just the same. For many students, community colleges provide just what they need to jumpstart their career or education. As you explore CCsmart, you might find it’s the right choice for you, too!

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Is community college right for you?

Deciding on your next step after graduation is both an exciting and daunting time for high schoolers. Between worrying about final exams and facing the reality of adulthood looming ever closer, many graduating seniors feel unprepared for taking that next leap into whatever their future may hold.

Skip college right after high school? No problem. The average age of community college students is 26, creating a great environment for post-traditional learners. No matter when you start, community college is the best place for you to build the best version of yourself while creating economic mobility for you and your family.

Community colleges serve as a launching pad for students – both a safe place to land and a starting point for pursuing your goals. But before you make your final decision, you have to consider what you’re looking for in an institution.

I want to work 

If you’re interested in the quickest path to the workforce, community colleges offer many career-tech degrees and certificate programs. From nursing to advanced manufacturing to healthcare tech to aesthetician programs, there are many career paths that you can jumpstart with a certificate or associate program.

I want to get a bachelor's degree

If your plan is to pursue higher levels of education, community colleges offer high quality, affordable degrees with credits that are accepted by most institutions. Many four-year institutions also offer partnership programs with local community colleges, fast-tracking the transfer process so it is easier (and less expensive) for you! And in some cases, there are even community colleges that offer bachelor’s degrees as an extension of their associate degree programs.

I'm still deciding

If you’re still deciding on what path to take, community colleges provide a low-cost means of exploring your options. With highly trained career and transfer advisors, you’ll be well-equipped to make informed decisions for your future and walk away with a degree that will help you meet your goals – and without a mountain of debt.

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How to make community college work for you

As community-based institutions, community colleges prioritize making their classes accessible and meaningful to students. Whether it’s by providing resources to help students meet their needs outside the classroom or offering individual advisement or tutoring to keep students on track, there are many programs to take advantage of at community colleges.

Why is community college a good choice?

Community colleges pride themselves in the flexibility of their classes, meeting the needs of both traditional students entering straight from high school as well as post-traditional students who may be attending part-time or have other responsibilities. By offering day, afternoon, and night options as well as both remote and in-person (and even hybrid!), community colleges ensure that their courses are accessible to everyone. With this flexibility, students are able to build a schedule that works for them without making major concessions to their day-to-day lives.

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