Community College is a great option

Community College is a great option

Christian Diethart

Looking around at his applications and college essays, Owen Kreple couldn’t hold back the fear of rejection in the back of his mind. 

   Constantly wondering if he did well enough in his years of high school. 

Regrets race through his mind waiting for a college to judge whether he deserves to get the chance to chase his dreams. 

   Wondering even if he does make it into a university how he will even pay the thousands of dollars in tuition. 

Not even sure if he is going down the right path to reach a career. 

   Not even sure if that is the career he wants. 

These stressful times of doubt and worry happen for many high schoolers not sure how to take the next step.

   For students who can relate to Kreple’s story- who are stressed out even thinking about making the next step after high school, consider community college.


Although entering into college as undecided might not seem like a big deal, when mixing in the cost of college, an average of $35,720 per year in the U.S, this can create a very dangerous financial situation that many young kids enter just to follow the trend. 

   “Quite honestly, I had no idea what I wanted to do after high school. I thought that university was what everyone else was doing, so I wanted to go, but it didn’t feel right to me,” says GRCC student Liliana Bartels.


When considering community college costs students can experiment more with what they want to do as a career. With an average of $4,000-$8,000 per year, students can pursue a major without putting their own or their family’s financial security and risk. 

Staying Local

Community college gives students an advantage that many universities can’t offer. 

   The quantity and locality of community colleges allow students to stay at home if they please, saving thousands of dollars on housing and food. 

Although many teenagers might want to leave home as soon as possible, staying for one or two years figuring out what to do while not spending tens of thousands of dollars could be the best option along with the benefits of staying with the people and places they know and love. 

   “Finance wise, it’s really good to save money, with the economy right now, it’s near impossible to find an apartment, but it’s also sometimes frustrating, as I feel I haven’t gotten anywhere outside my hometown. But I remind myself that even though I’m still here physically, I’m making bigger steps academically so that when I do transfer, whether it be in state or out of state, I will have the same amount of experience,” Bartels says. 

Progress Towards the Next Step

Many people might see community college as a backup for students that couldn’t make it into regular universities, but community college is a great step leading into more education or the workforce. 

   “Currently I’m taking Public Speaking, a communications course, English 101, a basic English course, a hybrid Creative Writing course, and a Math course specifically designed for Liberal Arts students,” Bartels says.

Universities are not the only ones that offer career-specific courses and majors. Like Bartels, students can register for specific classes designed to build the skills needed in a career they would like to pursue. 

   And even if they do not want to take these specific courses in a community college or just don’t know which classes to take, getting basic credits in community college is an excellent way to save money.

“I’m planning on getting my basic credits here (GRCC) and then transferring to SAIC or CCS for product design,” Kreple says.

   Getting these basic credits in community college is a great way for students to save money while getting basically the same education compared to a university. 

Then once they locate what major or career they want to pursue then transferring to a more specific work-oriented course or major could be a great option that many use.

  Negativity on community college

Despite the positives of community college, a big reason this article even has to be made is because of the negative view people have on community college.

   It is seen as a 2nd choice for students who couldn’t make it into big universities or pay the tuition for these same universities.

“Personally, I actually did view community college as a bit of a lesser option when I was about a sophomore and junior in high school, because it seemed as if it was only for people who seemingly couldn’t afford university,” Bartels says.

   This negative view is not also pushed by students but teachers and school administrators push students to pursue the traditional university route.

“I wasn’t always offered the idea of CC compared to University, but I did some research myself and found it was a much better fit than say MSU or UMich.”

   Instead of caring more about what others will think about attending a community college, students should look for what will truly help them succeed.

For many, community college will be the right choice.


“There really is no right or wrong way to go about getting a higher education. Doing it however feels right to you is the most important part, even if it’s community, studying abroad, a gap year, or university.” Bartels says.

For students who want to have more flexibility in their life to truly optimize these crucial years after high school while still furthering their education, consider community college.