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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Published April 12, 2017 |
Things to Think About Before Studying Abroad
Studying abroad is a wonderful experience for college students, but is it an option for community college students? Keep reading to find out!

Students who choose to attend community college over a traditional four-year university do so to save money or to have greater flexibility with their classes. Just because you choose a community college, however, doesn’t mean you have to miss out on a true college experience. Many community colleges are starting to offer their students the same benefits that more traditional colleges offer, including study abroad opportunities. If you are a community college student considering a study abroad program, take the time to learn the pros and cons before you make your choice.

Can Community College Students Study Abroad?

Unless you’ve already done some research, you may not know that study abroad is even an option for community college students. The fact of the matter is, however, that more community college students are taking advantage of study abroad programs than ever before. According to research, nearly 6,000 community college students participated in study abroad programs in the 2012 to 2013 school year. That was a 12% increase from the year before, and the number continues to rise. Even though there are more community college students studying abroad each year, they are still just a drop in the bucket. In terms of the total number of American students who study abroad each year, community college students only represent about 3% of the total.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Studying Abroad?

Before you decide to study abroad, there are many things you need to think about. It takes a lot of preparation to arrange

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Published April 07, 2017 |
The Top Challenges for Non-Traditional Students in Community College
If you are starting community college as an adult, there are certain challenges you can expect to face. Understanding and anticipating those challenges will help you to face them head-on with the greatest chance for success.

Community college offers a wonderful alternative to traditional four-year colleges and universities in many ways. Not only are community college degrees generally much more affordable, but the programs themselves are also very flexible. Many community colleges offer online classes which is particularly beneficial for non-traditional students, including parents and students who work a full-time job. Keep reading to learn more about non-traditional students in community college and tips for success.

What is a Non-Traditional Student?

College students come in all kinds of packages, but the majority of students fall into the same categories in terms of age and lifestyle. When it comes to community college versus four-year colleges and universities, however, there are some major differences among the student body. Community colleges tend to attract more “non-traditional” students, but what does that really mean? According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), there are seven characteristics that are commonly seen in students who qualify as “non-traditional” – here they are:

  • Didn’t go to college right after graduating high school
  • Attending college part-time instead of full-time
  • Working a full-time job while in school
  • Being financially independent from parents and family
  • Having children or other dependents
  • Being a single parent
  • Having a GED rather than a high school diploma

Of course, not all non-traditional students fit all of these criteria, but you really only need one to be grouped in this category. You may be surprised to learn, however, just how common non-traditional students are at the undergraduate level as a whole – it is close to 75% of

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Updated March 08, 2017 |
The Top 10 Tips for Incoming Community College Students
Starting community college can be very exciting, but don't get too caught up in the excitement! Follow these top ten tips to make the most of your community college education from the very beginning.

Though many people still think that community college is a lesser version of a traditional four-year university, the truth is that your education will be what you make it – it doesn’t really matter where you go to school. In the end, all that really matters is the effort you put into it and how well you take advantage of the opportunities presented to you. If you want to graduate from community college with the best chance for future success, follow these top ten tips when you start attending school.

Why Attend a Community College?

According to the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), almost half of all undergraduate students in the United States attend community college. Community college appeals to a diverse range of students from recent high school graduates to adults seeking continued education. Many students enjoy the flexibility and affordability of community college as compared to traditional four-year universities, though both options come with their own set of unique challenges. Going to college in general is a major life event and the choices you make could influence your future success. Having the right mindset and being proactive about your community college career can help you to get the most out of your education.

Tips for New Community College Students

Though community college is very different from a traditional four-year university in many ways, in many ways it is very much the same. The choices you make early in your community college career can influence the rest of your life, so

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Published February 06, 2017 |
How to Take Control of Your Community College Education
The opportunities you take in community college will help to shape the rest of your life, so don't be a passive observer! Take control of your community college education.

Each year, millions of students graduate from high school and move on to higher education. While 4-year colleges and universities may be the more traditional option, community college works for many students. If you are thinking about enrolling in community college, take the time to learn about this option from every angle.

In this article, you will learn about the pros and cons of community college to help you make your choice. If you do decide that community college is right for you, you’ll also receive tips for taking control of your community college education so you can graduate with the best chance for success upon entering the “real world”.

Is Community College Right for You?

If you think that community college could be the right choice for you, you would be wise to learn about the pros and cons of making this choice. Community college is an excellent alternative to four-year colleges and universities, but it isn’t the right decision for everyone. Here is a list of advantages that may be associated with community college:

  • Many community colleges offer smaller class sizes which could mean more personalized attention and instruction from your teachers.
  • Community college is generally much less expensive than traditional 4-year schools, especially if you continue to live at home.
  • Many community colleges offer online classes and night classes, making it a more practical option for people who are working full-time or who have a family.
  • You may be able to complete your core classes at a fraction of the cost and then
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Published January 09, 2017 |
Common Mistakes Students Make During Their First Semester
When you first start college you may be overwhelmed by the newness of it. But keep these common mistakes in mind as you go through your first year to make sure that you are properly setup for the rest of your college career and your life thereafter.

College is a time of learning and self-discovery. It is exciting to finally be out in the world on your own – you don’t have to answer to anyone and you can do whatever you want, more or less. But just because you have more freedom in your life doesn’t mean that you can abuse it. Learn from the example of some college students who didn’t take college quite as seriously as they should have, and now they are paying the price.

Top Academic Mistakes You Want to Avoid

College is where you will learn the information and skills you need to succeed in the “real world” as an adult. You will pick a major and then take all of the classes you need to graduate with a degree in that major which will (hopefully) get you a job after graduation. There is no need to pack your class schedule with all of the hardest classes the school has to offer – you aren’t really trying to impress anyone. But there are some common academic mistakes you want to avoid. Here are a few of the most common academic mistakes first-year college students make:

  1. Believing that college is just like high school. In high school, your teachers hold you accountable for doing your classwork and for showing up on time. Once you get to college, however, it is on you to keep up with your classwork and homework, and to show up for class. This requires a certain degree of self-discipline which
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Student Issues

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.