You couldn’t get into a real university. You’re dumb. You’re not going to get a good education. You’re going to regret your decision. These are all some of the comments people say in their mind after asking community college students where they’re going to school. The awkward smile and hesitation before saying ‘good for you’ out loud usually gives away what they’re thinking. What people don’t know is that community college can offer people a second chance at achieving their dreams, even if they got straight As and had outstanding extracurriculars in high school.
One of the main reasons people attend community college is to save money. Dorms, health, and food fees on top of tuition can cost up to hundreds of thousands of dollars depending on which college you attend. By going to community college for one or two years, some students can eliminate some of that cost by living at home with their parents and eating at home. The first two years at any college or university are essentially spent taking general education classes that cover core subjects. You can take these same courses at community college for thousands of dollars less than what a university will charge. In most cases those courses will smoothly transfer over to a four-year college. In the end, you will save thousands of dollars and still receive the same diploma as those who attended a university all four years.
For others, community college is an opportunity to stay closer to home for another year or two if they are not fully ready to move away. This could be because of external factors, such as taking care of a sick family member or simply not feeling comfortable enough to live on their own. Many people who are against community college believe that students should move away from home in order to experience adulthood. While this is true, for some people it is simply unaffordable to pay thousands of dollars for a dorm room on top of tuition.
In all, community college students shouldn’t be considered by society to be less smart or capable than those who attend a four-year university. For some people, community college is their only chance at receiving a higher education. For others it may be a personal preference to stay at home for two more years until they are fully ready to leave. Whatever the reason may be, it is unfair for society to label these students as inherently dumb when they are receiving the same education as those in four year college. College prestige and recognition should not be a determining factor in how people judge others. In the end, both the community college and four-year college paths will meet and the only determining factor of success is where you end up.