I graduated from Manor College, a 2-year college, in 2015. I was excited to take the next step in my education, but I knew I’d miss Manor. Looking back, Manor was probably the best two years of my life. Here are some of my reasons why, and why I think more people should attend 2-year colleges:
Save money: For starters, tuition at 2-year colleges is often more affordable than at 4-year universities. On top of that, most 2-year colleges are commuter campuses, in which it’s normal to live at home. By not paying room and board, you could save at least $10,000 a year.
Transfer agreements: When you hear it isn’t a piece of cake to transfer, you might be inclined to go to a place where you won’t need to transfer. However, many students, even at four-year institutions, transfer. If you transfer from a 2-year college, chances are they have agreements set up with local 4-year colleges. These agreements may save you from taking core classes after transferring, or even grant you admission into the 4-year college!
Opportunities: Most 2-year colleges are smaller than 4-year universities, which means your participation is in high demand. Did you join a campus organization this year? Here, be President next year! When students are only on campus for two years, sophomores receive club positions that seniors normally acquire at 4-year colleges.
Scholarships and jobs: Going off of the last point, by taking on those positions that most students can’t until their senior year, you’ve gained awesome experience and resume builders that colleges and employers look for. Participating in extracurricular activities will definitely help you when it’s time to apply for scholarships and jobs!
Connections: On the smaller campus of a 2-year college, you’re practically forced to make connections with the people around you. Professors? Know your name. Staff? You live in their office. Peers? See them everywhere. Friends? You can’t get away. These connections with faculty, staff, and students are great, especially when it comes to your job search (because it’s not what you know, but who you know)!
Small campus: A small campus might sound like a bad thing, but it’s definitely a good thing in the bitter cold or when you’re late for class. A shorter walk (or run) in those situations is always welcome. Additionally, you’re guaranteed to see people you know out of class.
Associate’s degrees: Most 2-year colleges award associate’s degrees, which are great for many reasons. Primarily, associate’s degrees can add another focus to your resume. (Read this blog post for the benefits of associate’s degrees.)
A fresh start: 2-year colleges can be the perfect stepping-stone if you didn’t do as well as you hoped to in high school. These small colleges can offer the support and encouragement needed to improve your grades, so that a 4-year college is within reach.
Did you attend a 2-year college? What did you enjoy?
– Sarah C.