In a ruthless economy it’s difficult to think that cheaper and more flexible options, such as community colleges, are thinning out.
They provide another outlet for students who can’t afford the rising costs of universities. If a student is denied access to their choice university or can’t foot the bill, community college is an appealing option. With funding reductions and earlier deadlines to transfer to main universities, community colleges are taking a hit, even when their popularity is on the rise.
For the 2008 to 2009 academic year, the California Colleges Web site states an average cost of $12,240 for living on campus at a community college. Expenses include room and board, fees and tuition, books, supplies and miscellaneous charges. California State Universities cost an estimated $18,116 and University of California schools totaled $25,300.
While the price of school is still hard to take in, it’s nice that community colleges give students some kind of break. Junior colleges provide a cheaper gateway into the upper educational world.
It gives hope that anyone can go to college, no matter what their total cost shows. For two years, students can save some cash and still get the same two-year educational status as a four-year university.
Transferring to a CSU or UC from a junior college becomes very appealing and cost friendly.
Here comes the hard part. New budget cuts will take slices out of educational funds and put major strains on community colleges and universities alike.
CSUN moved up their deadline to accept transfer applicants for Fall 2009 to February 15. Many students have been left in the dark about new deadlines and as a consequence missed the cut. With construction freezes and less jobs at universities, CSUs are forced to accept fewer students.
Community college transfer students are the ones who take the hit from tough enrollment caps.
If the state denies access to higher education to certain students at community colleges, it will be denying something much more. We can’t expect our economy to grow when budget cuts make it difficult to continue students’ education.
In an economy that is dwindling, education takes on a bigger role. Many people are going back to school as the job market becomes restrained.
Getting a bachelor’s, or any other degree for that matter, will only better someone’s chances of landing a job. Although the job market seems like it’s dying, college can help the chances of it coming back to life.
It is difficult to think that our economy will get better when we can’t even provide a genuine opportunity for our future. Higher education is a pathway to a stronger outcome. With better learning opportunities the youth of our country can make smarter choices.
But if budget cutbacks deny transfer students from community colleges, better learning opportunities start to diminish.
The other issue is funding for community college. With less money available for them thousands of students are being turned away from institutions. The cheaper option of a junior college is not as easy as before.
Now we are left with minimal jobs and opportunities to make money and now we have to deal with fewer options for less expensive schooling.
Sounds like a never ending circle of economic hardship. It may be more important than ever to stay optimistic, but it becomes increasingly difficult when more and more options are being taken away.
When students from community colleges can’t advance their educational status, our future tends to look pretty bleak.
Misinformation about changing deadlines and budget cutbacks could lead students in for big problems.
Why is our state cutting back on the things that could potential help us the most?
Education should be available to everyone. Community colleges used to be a great outlet for students looking for a less expensive and more convenient education. Recently, it seems like helpful options are being taken away in a time when we need them most.