Essays on community colleges vs universities

It takes, on average, six months to a year to develop a new program and move it to the approval process. And it takes even longer to develop all of the new courses necessary for that new program. Furthermore, new programs require consultants, marketing and sometimes additional equipment, staff and faculty members. Second, besides developing new programs, urban community colleges are also attempting to revamp themselves and emulate or recreate a traditional four-year university campus experience.

They set up a traditional course schedules with classes meeting two or even three times a week for 50 minutes or 75 minutes each rather than once a week for several hours, which commuter students prefer. They move more classes to the daytime and hire more student affairs personnel in order to expand campus activities, trips, events and services. That shift may benefit younger, full-time students who spend most of their time on the campus, socializing and working at part-time jobs.

But it comes at the expense of vital services such as personal academic and career advising, extended testing center hours to help support makeup tests and the like that support students from all demographics but must be cut to pay for the changes. Meanwhile, neither new programs nor turning a community college into a university campus will adequately address the enrollment challenge. Generally, revenue- and space-constrained urban community colleges cannot adequately compete with comprehensive universities, which are able to eliminate any student anxieties about credit transfer and offer a wider spectrum of programs, support services, extracurricular activities, career services and internships, as well as greater resources for scholarships.

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Directly competing with four-year public universities for the relatively small group of academically highly qualified and financially well-situated students -- who have a true choice as a freshman between attending the university or the community college -- usually proves to be a losing proposition for the community college. Further, many state universities have now begun to change their first two years of general education requirements, making it easier for students to start at a four-year institution. Barring those agreements already being in place, students fare better by not transferring but rather starting at the university as freshmen if they can, as otherwise they will inevitably lose credits.

Urban community colleges would be better served if they were to revise and reform their existing services and target a different type of student. Their priority should be focused on retention efforts: designing and implementing comprehensive strategies to increase completion and graduation rates through campuswide, collaborative efforts.

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Not only would that approach require less time than launching new projects but, more important, it would be cost-efficient and work strategically as well as efficiently with the resources, structures, personnel and processes the institutions already have in place. Advising professionals, administrators and faculty who are part of the Guided Pathways reform movement have developed a variety of targeted programs to combine technology and degree planning as well as transfer planning, while linking to on-campus support services -- an approach now referred to as Integrated Planning and Advising for Student Success, or iPass.

It could also be accomplished through organized efforts to streamline degrees by eliminating too many free electives and paring down departments and degree offerings to four metamajors and only a few majors within each metamajor. Rather than compete with four-year institutions, community colleges should develop close partnerships with them. Moreover, community colleges should focus on students from vast untapped markets who would greatly benefit from opportunities within their communities -- which in turn would support the economic and cultural growth of urban neighborhoods.

For example, to offer greater support for professional, nontraditional students -- a student demographic that is actually increasing in numbers at many urban community colleges in recent years -- community colleges should consider strengthening career and technical education internships and advisory boards, prior learning assessment credits, and competency-based education credentialing. Urban community colleges should also focus on the many students in socioeconomically challenged neighborhoods who believe that education is not applicable to them or attainable.

To support first-generation college students and the economic growth of their communities, for instance, urban community colleges should consider working with Achieving the Dream. Through its membership network, students and institutional partners gain opportunities for growth and achievement that, in turn, can benefit the institution in multiple ways. Recruiters and advisers should also work with high school guidance counselors and teachers to assist in college placement. And to improve completion and graduation rates, standardized placement tests should be replaced by multiple data points for admissions and placement decisions, which would minimize the time that students spend in developmental education and English as a Second Language classes.

If urban community colleges were to focus their concerted efforts on the students for whom they are the only gateway for accessing higher education, and truly invest in their communities, their overall enrollment would significantly improve, as would their communities. Instead of competing for the same small group of highly qualified students, urban community colleges need to stay true to their core and serve their entire communities with innovative outreach and support structures on multiple levels -- interacting with community members, entrepreneurs and businesses, local nonprofit and government agencies.

Those community colleges that heed such a call would not only solve their enrollment challenges in a relatively short time frame but also serve as a focal point to the surrounding community. They would truly become community-centered institutions, dedicated to the democratic principles of equity and entrepreneurial opportunity, artistic expression and intellectual discourse.

Christiane Warren has served as division dean, department chair and tenured faculty member at community colleges in northern New Jersey and as a campus administrator and faculty mentor for SUNY Empire State College in Ithaca, N. Be the first to know.

Intro: The Basics of Community College

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What is a Community College?

Colleges see declines in Chinese student enrollments. View the discussion thread. Google Tag Manager. You can start majoring in something in a community college and then transfer your credits to a university. Many people. Most of the time it is not about what kind of grades you will get or what college your accepted into, it is all about perception, including financial issues, level of independence and wheatear or not a major is already determined. Meanwhile, Community college and Four-Year universities are both wonderful options, but are meant for totally different people.

High school students still have much to learn and when they make the transition from high school to a 4 year university it overwhelms them.


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Starting off at a community college is a great way for high school student to continue their education, but also for adults. At the time, the University of Texas had a separate law school for African Americans to attend because segregation was still widely accepted in the United States.

The University of Texas Law School had 16 full-time professors, 3 part-time professors, students, and over 65, volumes. Not only is this significant in itself, it is also the adversity she overcame growing up to get there. And later, in the profound.

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What is a Community College? | Study in the USA - International Student USA Study Guide

College Two year vs Trade School For some students, the question of what to do after high school may be a burden to even contemplate as it approaches quicker and quicker. The pressure to continue another four or more years of education after high school can be overwhelming considering twelve years of schooling has already been completed; why go right back to school again?

Some people are simply just not ready for college and they know it, or at least until after. Compare and Contrast Essay Community College vs. Universities Choosing a college means going to a new, unfamiliar world of immense possibilities. One of the hardest decisions a high school graduate face is the choice between attending a Community College or a University.

Although Universities and Community College serve the same purpose, each has its differences and similarities in their learning such as the admission requirements, expenses, size, and student life. Community College are the most common type of two-year College that prepares you to continue your education, are often an affordable and convenient option.

At a University, you can …show more content…. Since most of the same financial aid including Pell grants and Stafford loans is available for any institution choice, students in the lowest income brackets can expect a larger financial aid refund from a community college than a university. Those who need a university education to meet their career goals may be able to attend a community college part time while they work and save up. Then, when they transfer to a university for their final two years, they may have saved enough that with financial aid, they can pursue their four-year degree.

Community Colleges tend to have fewer students per class, which means more attention from teacher to student. This is good for students who like access to their instructors so they can ask questions and avoid getting lost in the course material. Universities are bigger than community colleges and it takes a little longer to find your way around campus. Most teenagers graduate from high school eager to leave their parents house and do grown up things.

Not all universities have dorms, but the majority of them do. Which you have to pay for parking, fitness center, laundry and other fees included.