Are There Benefits to Attending Community College?


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Front of a community college building.

Hanais Karmand

Why is attending a community college better than attending a university? There are many reasons why people prefer to attend a community college rather than a university, just as there are many reasons why people prefer to attend a university rather than a community college.

For years, people who have attended or plan on attending community college have faced criticism from society. They believe community college is for students who aren’t smart or have no ambition. They think that community college is for less wealthy people who need an associate’s degree to acquire an easy job, when in reality community college is the smarter route to take.

Community college has many perks. The first being significantly higher tuition. To go to a community college, you can expect to pay roughly three thousand dollars; on the other hand, at a university, it averages around fifty thousand dollars in-state and around double that out-of-state. By going to a community college, you save a lot more money while taking the same classes as university students do. Community college also has a very flexible schedule; you can choose classes during the day or night. It’s built to fit your schedule if you want to work while going to college. According to ACCT Now, it is financially smarter to go to a community college. “According to the nationally representative survey of adults ages 18 and older, nearly 85 percent of Americans believe two-year community colleges are worth the cost, and more than two-thirds think community colleges contribute to a strong American workforce, prepare people to be successful and happy in life, and are for people in their situation”.

Another perk would be its commitment—or rather, lack thereof. Going to a school while not fully committing to your major or not liking it is hard; you pay so much money to change your major and your classes. Community college is a great way to test the waters and see what you might like and what you don’t like. If you want to change majors, it’s relatively inexpensive compared to university, where you are charged a lot more. Lisl G. McCredy from Quora wrote her opinion on commitment while acquiring a higher education such as community college or university: “No college is perfect. Community colleges (and any institute for learning) can be very different. The big advantage with a community college is that you can try it for a quarter or semester and, if it isn’t for you, then you can always switch schools without wasting so much money.”

All in all, community college is a much smarter and more reliable choice. There are great perks to universities as well, but without too much commitment to majors or study fields and much lower tuition, community college becomes a great option.