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Is it better to go to a 4-year college or transfer in from a community college?

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I'm debating whether I should go straight to a 4 year or transfer in from a community college. #college #transfer

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6 answers

Lindsey’s Answer

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Hi Cindy!
I think it depends entirely on the colleges you're interested in attending. If for example you don't have a high enough GPA to get into the 4-year university of your choice then I would go to community college for a year (do REALLY well!) and then apply to that 'dream' college.


There are so many great universities out there, so I recommend visiting as many as you can. I do believe it's best to go to a 4 year university, but you'll need to consider a number of factors before deciding on where to apply (college size - do you want to go to a big university or a small one? location - do you want to move away from your hometown or stay close by? major/minor - what do you want to major in and what colleges have the best programs for that subject?). Once you've figured out what you want in a college then start applying! If you don't get in then you'll always have community college to fall back on, and as I already mentioned, as long as you do really well during your time in CC then you should be able to get into a good 4 year university after 1-2 years.


I hope this helps! Let me know if you have any follow up questions. Best of luck to you!!

Thanks! I didn't really think about college size as much as I should have. Now I'm taking it into consideration Cindy H. Translate
I don't think you should think of a community college as just a place to "fall back on." Community colleges offer great educations and, as Lindsey said, if you do well, they open the door for you to go to a college of your choice. Community colleges are less expensive, usually closer to home, and can provide good internships in your local community. You can also start out getting an Associate Degree, then go on to get a Bachelor's degree at a college. Eva Brune Translate
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Lindsay’s Answer

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The choice to transfer from community college or enroll in a 4 year university out of the gate is a very person decision and is dependent on many factors, such as which university you desire to attend; your high school GPA, test scores and extracurriculars, and financial situation. In the end, it's about the degree you receive and not as much about how you get there. Can you afford 4 years? Do you want to take on student debt? Can you get into your dream school straight out of HS?

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Sarah’s Answer

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Hi Cindy!


So I'd say think about a couple things when considering what decision you will make and that is: money, preparedness, and grades! I have several friends who've attended community college and then transferred into a 4 year after they were done with their 2 years at a community college (much of their reasons had to do with one of those things I listed). Community colleges are cheaper without a doubt, and more manageable... depending on what your plans are. If you plan to have a job full-time, things can get hectic! I think a part-time, or on campus job during college is best, so as to not interfere with your studies.


Next, it's important to think about how prepared you are to start college, and if you don't feel 100% ready that is okay! It's better to know yourself and make the best decision for your future, instead of plunging into something you aren't too confident about. And finally, grades. If you'd like an opportunity to really pick your grades up and be a standout scholar to admissions officers at 4 year colleges, attending a community college can really give you that boost!


I'm not too familiar with your current situation and whether going to a 2 year community or 4 year college has anything to do with the three things that I've mentioned, but regardless they are things to think about. Nonetheless, what you put in is what you get out. I am sure whatever you choose do will be the best fit and you'll learn a lot.


Best Regards!

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Lisa’s Answer

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The answer greatly depends upon your financial aid, your academic standing, and what you want to do professionally. There is nothing wrong with community college, and it is perfectly fine to earn your two year degree and transfer to a four year university, especially if money is a concern. If you want minimal debt coming out of college, this is one route to take. Having said that, there are many opportunities for financial aid, and it is possible to go to a 4 year university without the cost being a major issue. The cost will vary depending upon which college it is, scholarships, grants, loans, and your own money. Loans have to be paid back, but scholarships and grants do not. You may qualify for money from the government as well as getting money from the college. Some colleges award money based upon need, your good academic standing, or a talent you may have like playing an instrument or sport (or a combination of everything). There are so many factors involved with making such a decision, but the key thing to remember is to keep your options open, do not automatically think community college based upon funding, and weigh the advantages and disadvantages to both. Many students want to get the full experience of college, and community college typically will not offer that. Some students are not ready for college on the grand scale and may do better at the community college level. Some students may only need or want a two year degree or certification that is offered at the community college level. What are you looking for? You will need to research your options based upon your interests and financial aid (FAFSA) when you apply, and go from there. Good Luck!

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Ollie’s Answer

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I'm friends with some community college folks -- a professor and a dean. They think of it as a success (score!!) when a student transfers to a four year college. So you can be sure they'll have your interests at heart.


You'll have a highly committed group of fellow students at community college. They are people scrambling to learn while they hold down a job, veterans looking for a way into the workforce, and folks determined to get the education they need to go into work like nursing, IT, and other professions. Many of your fellow students will be very busy people, so you might not get to know them very well, like you would people at a four-year college. But that's OK.


You'll need to be self-motivated to get the best from a community college. Nobody's going to beg you to do the reading or write the papers. It will be up to you.


Also, two years at community college can be a great choice if you're thinking of entering a helping profession like social work, law enforcement, nursing, or ministry. Why? you won't accumulate as much debt so you will have more freedom to do what you really want to do rather than having to chase the bucks to pay off your loans.

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Andrea’s Answer

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I think it depends on the type of experience you want, and the resources you currently have. I went to a community college and saved money! Not only did I save money, but I took additional courses there because the cost was significantly less. I felt more inclined to try new classes for career and personal growth. I was also able to get an internship at the community college and got a lot of work experience as well. You get what you put into it. If you attend a community college, look at the student groups, visit professors during office hours, apply for internships, all of those things will prepare you for a university and later down the road. A lot of community colleges now have priority admission into universities. Good luck in your decision!

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