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University or community college?

I am having trouble deciding what I want to do about education. University? Community college? Certifications? Should I even bother with college for wildland firefighting? #college #university #firefighting #wildland #community-college


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John’s Answer

COMMUNITY COLLEGE VS UNIVERSITY

4 ADVANTAGES TO CHOOSING A COMMUNITY COLLEGE OVER A UNIVERSITY
When high school seniors are deciding how to pursue higher education, they may not initially think of community colleges. But these schools shouldn't be overlooked. Turns out, there are plenty of community college benefits, and attending one can be an advantage for students before they move on to a four-year university. Community college is a great fit for many students, and often better than going to a four-year college, It can help students develop necessary academic skills, mature emotionally, and often lead to a more fulfilling, better-paying careers.

James, here are 4 key reasons to put community colleges versus universities on your academic radar:
√ Cost – Community colleges are usually less expensive.
√ Flexibility – Class schedules can be more flexible.
√ Support – More support during your transition from high school.
√ Career Opportunities – Explore your interests and enter niche job markets.

At the very least, you can complete your first two years of your college education for a fraction of the cost. Going to a community college for two years — getting all of your pre-requisites and then transferring to a university — can save $35,000 to $60,000 in some cases. But if this is your plan, make sure to do your research and double-check that your credits will indeed transfer to your four-year college. Otherwise you may end up paying twice for the same class.

James in your case I would recommend attending a community college and completing your associate's degree in fire science as it may prove beneficial during the application process for a Wildland Firefighter. And... if you should very change your mind you'll have your Associated Science Degree towards a four year university.

WILDLAND FIREFIGHTER REQUIRMENTS
Wildland firefighters must be able to withstand strenuous physical activity and largely work outdoors. Applicants must pass both a physical and written test. Accepted recruits are generally trained at a local training center, with training programs provided by organizations such as the National Wildfire Coordinating Group and the USFA's National Fire Academy. In addition to extinguishing forest fires, wildland firefighters are responsible for rescuing victims, providing emergency medical treatment and patrolling burned areas to ensure fires don't restart. Other general duties include routine maintenance of tools and equipment and participation in public fire prevention education programs.

Was this helpful James

I totally agree with John here. If you want to get a 4 year degree at a prestigious university, the most cost effective way to do so is to do your first two years at a community college, then transfer into a 4 year university between the sophomore/junior year. I would suggest you get a four year degree as a backup in case you get burnt out (no pun intended) or you want to use your degree to specialize within the career of a firefighter (e.g. if you really enjoy communications, I'm sure a communications degree will help your in your career). Dexter Arver

Thank You Dexter, I am grateful to have the support of volunteers like you, the world needs more people like you. John Frick

Your welcome James, It was my pleasure John Frick

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Cory’s Answer

The fact that you are asking questions like this is a good sign that you are thinking this through. College is an incredibly important step for a lot of jobs, but not all. If you know what you want to do for a living, then you should start there and work your way backwards. How important is a degree in that field? Is it required? Will it give you a leg up or give you an opportunity to reach higher levels within that career? Once you get those answers, if you determine that college is the best route, you can research the best way to move forward. In many cases, completing a couple years at a community college is much more economical than going to a more expensive university. College should be looked at like an investment, and you should be looking for a good return on your investment (ROI) in whatever decision you make. If you know what the long term salary is for someone in your chosen career, you can work backwards to figure out if an expensive university education is a good investment or not.

In today's world, colleges and universities are big businesses that are looking to make as much money as possible. Some are more than happy to sell you a degree for $100K when your chosen career may take you decades to pay that money back. If a university education is what you need, it's worth looking at all your options and making the best business decision possible.

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David’s Answer

University or community college? That is a question a lot of high school student and their family has always see as a concern because some will see as money problem, some will see as they don't have the grades to get into a 4 years colleges or university, and some see it why I need a college degree and etc. Going to a Community College can only have you save some money have a easier transition from high school workload into a college plus they have associate degree as well as transition program from community college into a network university as well as smaller class like high school. I do recommend community college as a start if you and your family see a 4 years College or University is a financial program. But if you don't see getting a Bachelor or higher degree at the moment but the job you are trying to be in requires some resource of college degree just go for community college. University, itself already tell you what it is about it is big, cost a lot of money, the professor will not be focusing on all the student progress and just see you come and out of class and maybe sometimes when you go to their office hours for help, other than that you will be all on you own from getting help. University is more challenging, bigger, and self progress because it is big and may cause pressure for you if your transition from high school learning into college is not smooth. I have seen a lot of high school student getting into college for the first semester and ended dropping some if not all classes due the pressure they are dealing it. So talk to someone or try to see if you can shadow someone in couple college class to understand the different.

As for being a Wildland firefighter, a aspiring wildland firefighters commonly complete high school or pass the GED test. Completion of an associate's degree program or higher in fire science may prove beneficial during the application process. Most agencies require firefighters be certified as Emergency Medical Technicians. That is all I can suggest to you.

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Jason’s Answer

Community college is good for some people as it is cost effective. It also allows the student to be more flexible with time to work and study. A 4 year traditional college does give you the college atmosphere some people would want.

If you are not sure if you want to invest the money in a 4 year college from the beginning than community college makes sense. If your degree or career you want is better served starting out at a college/university than that is another consideration.

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Giovanni’s Answer

James,

I'm glad you brought this question. I will have to say that community college is the best decision when it comes to starting your college experience. The advantages that community colleges bring to many individuals:

- Most community colleges offer college level courses to seniors in high school so that can have a head start (Financial Aid may be given)
- The financial aid a community college applicant can receive will help to cover if not all costs, it can cover most. It is more feasible to obtain Pell Grants, scholarships, and other forms of financial aid
- Living at home; it's important to have family, friends, and those who support you near you at all times. You'll be receiving motivation and assistance from those you interact with more frequently when compared to being miles away in some university. In addition to that expenses are far less than a university as some require freshmen students to live on campus which is an additional expense to education and food
- Many community colleges offer affordable programs that teach students' a specific material when it comes to choosing a career; they partner with community business and non-profit organizations to develop our future nurses, engineers, etc. Some of these program offer financial aid whenever a student decides to finish community college and make a transfer to a more bigger university
- Life is easier to balance. When it comes to balancing work, school, and personal matters; it can be less stressful. Many resources can be use for guidance and aid. The community college may not have as much students as a University would so that means counselors and professors are more accessible
- It's good to have a community college associate degree with undergraduate credits when thinking of transferring to a university. The transfer process is a lot smoother compared to the all the prerequisites for freshman applicants

I hope these factors help in making the community college decision a little more easier.

Thank you,

Giovanni A. Palermo

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Mark’s Answer

There are schools out there that offer degrees in this type of occupation, so look around. I'm aware of University of California, San Marcos for one. You may also want to set up an appointment with the fire chief at your local fire department to ask them of specific schools available. They tend to be the most informed about this specialty occupation. I have a friend whose son is doing the same thing and was able to get a great deal of insight, not only in schools to attend, but also career paths that utilize those skills that he hadn't thought of before. Anyway, I hope this helps, and good luck.

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Stephen’s Answer

From experience, i wish I started at community college for my basic courses and transferred to a University.

As I worked my way through college and paid my own way, I would have saved a significant amount of money taking pre-requisite courses at a community college.

Just make sure the community college you go to is affiliated with a university you want to go to so all of your credits can transfer.

The cost difference in spending 2 years at a community college can be immense.

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Giovanni’s Answer

James,

I'm glad you brought this question. I will have to say that community college is the best decision when it comes to starting your college experience. The advantages that community colleges bring to many individuals:

- Most community colleges offer college level courses to seniors in high school so that can have a head start (Financial Aid may be given)
- The financial aid a community college applicant can receive will help to cover if not all costs, it can cover most. It is more feasible to obtain Pell Grants, scholarships, and other forms of financial aid
- Living at home; it's important to have family, friends, and those who support you near you at all times. You'll be receiving motivation and assistance from those you interact with more frequently when compared to being miles away in some university. In addition to that expenses are far less than a university as some require freshmen students to live on campus which is an additional expense to education and food
- Many community colleges offer affordable programs that teach students' a specific material when it comes to choosing a career; they partner with community business and non-profit organizations to develop our future nurses, engineers, etc. Some of these program offer financial aid whenever a student decides to finish community college and make a transfer to a more bigger university
- Life is easier to balance. When it comes to balancing work, school, and personal matters; it can be less stressful. Many resources can be use for guidance and aid. The community college may not have as much students as a University would so that means counselors and professors are more accessible
- It's good to have a community college associate degree with undergraduate credits when thinking of transferring to a university. The transfer process is a lot smoother compared to the all the prerequisites for freshman applicants

I hope these factors help in making the community college decision a little more easier.

Thank you,

Giovanni A. Palermo

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Jacob’s Answer

In my opinion starting at a community college is a very smart route. Not only do you save a lot of money but many college students change their major once they take a few classes and realize hey maybe this route is not for me. Also even if you start at a community college you could always transfer to an University after your pre recs. Just make sure the credits at the community college transfer to the university of your choosing.

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Trent’s Answer

I always recommend starting with a good community college, the education is solid and much more affordable. I do recommend ensuring your courses will transfer to a 4yr school, otherwise you will be doing your future self a lot of good by saving big money starting off with community college. There is no shame in that game whatsoever.


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Samantha’s Answer

Regardless of your career aspirations, it is always good to have a degree. For the specific career you're interested in, do research in schools that specialize in your field of interest to see if it is financially feasible, if you should get a certificate/associates/or bachelors degree etc.

Make sure to speak with role models in your life. Ask them about the pros and cons with their school and career experience and make a sound decision on your next steps. Go to your local fire station and put together some questions to find out first hand what it's like to work in the field you are interested in.

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