For many recent graduates, their college degree came with tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of student loans. This sad reality leaves many to wonder if there is a better alternative to a four-year college. Some students have decided that starting out at a community college is a good way to avoid student loans. In fact, there are many financial benefits of community college!
Financial Benefits of Community College
Lower Tuition Costs
One of the most obvious financial benefits of community college is the lower costs. The average cost of tuition at a community college is only around $3,000 a year, as opposed to a traditional four-year university, which could be 10 times that amount if it’s a private school. Attending a community college for two years and then transferring to a four-year university could save you upwards of $20,000!
Easier to Work Full-Time
Community colleges were designed for nontraditional students. There are usually more evening classes available than a traditional four-year university. Because of this, students find it easier to work full-time while in school. The professors understand that many of their students may be older and already established in their careers and/or have children to take care of. The ability to work full-time while at a community college allows you to save money to reduce student loan debt if you plan on transferring to a four-year university later.
Option to Live at Home
Many four year universities require students to live on campus freshman year. Living on campus can be notoriously expensive, so by attending a community college, you can save a huge amount of money by living at home instead. Even if you aren’t able to live at home, an affordable apartment is still a more budget-friendly option than an expensive (and tiny) dorm room.
Associate’s Degree May Be Sufficient
Depending on your career path, you may not even need a four-year degree. For example, if you want to become a nurse, paralegal, or physical therapy assistant, you only need an associate’s degree. Community colleges, just like four-year universities, will have career centers where you can get help finding employment opportunities as well.
If you’re struggling to pay off debt, ACCC can help. Sign up for a free credit counseling session today!