Student Issues / Attending College

Academics, extracurricular activities, housing and more: be savvy about all facets of attending community college. Get tips on making the dean’s list, find ways to benefit from community college outside the classroom, and analyze the latest data on graduation and employment rates.
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Recent statistics have shown that it takes much more than a simple decision to attend community college to succeed in one of these institutions. In California, only 30% of community college students are receiving the benefits a college education can offer.
 
Study Results Concerning
 
A new study conducted by the Institute for Higher Education Leadership & Policy at Cal State Sacramento and reported by the Los Angeles Times found that the large majority of community college students failed to obtain a degree or transfer to a four-year institution. These students typically dropped out – some with a significant amount of debt and no degree to help them. In addition, only 40% of community college students achieved sufficient credit hours in school to boost their potential in the workforce.
 
The study also found a large disparity between minority and Caucasian students, with only 26% of African-American students and 22% of Latino students earning a degree, certification or transfer to a four-year university within six years. This compared to 37% of Caucasian students or 35% of Asian Pacific Islanders who saw success in community college. One possible reason for the difference is that many minority students in the California public school system find themselves in overcrowded classrooms with less access to qualified teachers and counselors.
 
Other States Facing Similar Problems
 
The low community college graduation rates are not restricted to California Schools. According to a report at the Goldwater Institute website, most Arizona community colleges can also be referred to . . . read more

Once thought of as traditional and old-fashioned, dress codes and school uniforms have become a center of focus for many schools once again. Some school administrators assert that maintaining a standard of dress is essential to level the playing field for students of all income levels and backgrounds, as well as to promote a clean, safe campus. The movement to stricter dress codes is no longer stopping at the secondary level. Today, some community colleges are even hopping aboard the dress code bandwagon too!  

Why Enforce Dress Codes?
 
The Clearinghouse on Educational Policy and Management from the University of Oregon states that the implementation of dress codes or school uniforms has been linked to a variety of benefits, including:
 
       ·        Safer schools overall
 
       ·        Enhanced learning environment
 
       ·        Higher student self esteem
 
       ·        Less pressure on parents

A strict dress code has been found to minimize violence in schools, particularly when it comes to gang-style clothing.  In addition, by eliminating expensive trendy clothing, the number of students robbed of shoes, hats, and jackets can be reduced.  Of course, when students feel safer on their school campus, learning is also enhanced.
 
Community College Dress Codes
 
In addition to many of the benefits listed above, community college students who must adhere to a relatively strict dress code receive training in how to dress for the professional world and beyond. Many community college administrators take their job of vocational training very seriously, and they believe appearance is an important component in that training if their graduates are . . . read more

One of the biggest obstacles community colleges face today is the ability to retain students until they graduate or transfer to another institution. According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), just one in five public community college students graduate with their certificate or associate’s degree within three years. Students pursuing a two-year degree have a much lower chance of achieving their educational goals than those who begin their academic careers at a four-year university, as the graduation for students at four-year institutions is nearly 60 percent.




However, a college degree is imperative today for individuals who want to gain employment that offers sufficient income to support themselves and their families. Community colleges are an especially good place to get an education because of the convenience and affordability many two-year institutions offer. To help students reach their goals, colleges are getting creative in their methods of student retention.
 
President Obama has set a high bar for colleges across the country: to have the highest college graduation rates in the world by the year 2020. However, this is a very tall task. According to report by 24/7 Wall St., from 2000-2011, the college graduation growth rate in the United States was a paltry 1.4 percent – one of the slowest rates of any developed country. While the U.S. has climbed the list of most educated countries – moving up to fifth place from seventh place – there is still much work to . . . read more

Nearly every community college and university across the country includes a dean's list, a roster of students who have performed particularly well during the previous semester or school year. The dean's list has traditionally been a prestigious honor for which to strive during your years of higher education because it demonstrates a commitment to academic excellence and the ability to rise to the workload, however heavy it might become. Whether you are just entering the hallowed halls of academia, or are currently working through your degree program, we have a list of reasons to strive for the dean's list and tips to help you get there.
 
What is the Dean's List?
 
According to Wikipedia, the dean's list is "a category of students in a college or university who achieve high grades during their stay in an academic term or academic year." The term is primarily used in North America, but some European institutions offer a dean's list as well.

Requirements for making the dean's list vary from institution to institution, but most mandate a specific number of course hours to be taken and a set GPA to be maintained during the term or school year. It is important to inquire with the advisement center or your academic counselor regarding the specific requirements for the dean’s list at your college.
 
Benefits of the Dean's List
 
The benefits of making the dean's list also vary from school to school, with some colleges even offering additional financial aid to students who make the dean's . . . read more

Many who have found themselves out of work thanks to the recent recession have headed back to school for retraining in a more lucrative profession – or so they thought. It turns out that many of those so-called hot industries highly touted during the slowdown are only lukewarm at best for many of the college grads trying to hunt down the openings.

We have the report on the real state of the job market, as well as some tips that could put you at the forefront during your own job search.
 
The Hot Market Illusion
 
Check out any news publication today, and you will find at least one article about the hottest markets that are currently hiring. Case in point: A piece on the New Year's Day edition of Good Morning America this year listed four hot markets for college graduates to consider. The industries included health care, law enforcement, business services and sales.
 
A recent article on CareerBuilder.com lists companies that will be hiring college graduates this summer. Some of those companies do fall into the industries listed by Good Morning America earlier this year. However, finding a company or industry that is hiring, and landing a good job right out of college are too different things, thanks to the many complexities of a dragging economy that hasn't pulled itself out of the unemployment slump just yet.
 
Factors Affecting Hiring
 
The truth is that it is simply hard to predict where the jobs will arise because there are many factors . . . read more
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Student Issues / Attending College

Extracurricular Activities

Community college can be fun and socially enriching, especially with the right extracurricular activities. Reasons to join the debate club, volunteer opportunities and wellness programs are just a few topics covered here. Explore the benefits of community college outside of the classroom, from holiday celebrations to athletic programs, schools are finding ways to keep students engaged on campus.

Graduation

Graduation rates, policies, and caps - oh my! This section covers all topics related to community college graduations. How does state spending impact graduation rates? Who are the oldest community college graduates? What initiatives are in place to stem the rate of dropouts? Find the answers to these questions and more.

Community College Housing

The number of community colleges offering on-campus housing is on the rise. Learn more about campus living options, compare the pros and cons of dorm life, and get help deciding what housing is best for you.

Improving Learning

Get helpful tips and expert advice on boosting your GPA. This section will provide valuable tips on studying, mentor programs and how to avoid academic probation. Examine the latest trends in student motivation techniques, take a good look at online learning, and find resources to guide you on the path to success.

Improving Your Job Search

Whether you have just enrolled in community college or you’re ready to graduate and enter the job market, our articles can help improve your opportunities of landing the perfect job. Internships and apprenticeships offer lots of benefits, find out how participation in these programs can move your resume to the top of the pile. Analyze employment data for community college graduates and determine who is getting hired. Get valuable tips on polishing your candidacy and making the most of job fairs.

Class Schedules

- Do you need child care? Are you employed full-time? Community colleges offer a variety of scheduling options, allowing most students to easily integrate continued education into an already busy schedule. From weekend classes to courses at midnight, we cover the gamut of flexible class schedules at community college.