While there are more students attending community colleges before moving on to four-year schools, choosing that route still carries a stigma that follows those students throughout their college careers.
“Oh you’re just going to community college?” “I don’t get why they’re so excited about it.”
These are some of the things students at my high school would say about people who were staying home and attending their local community college, myself included.
I thought it was unfair that students were making us feel bad about our decision. I felt embarrassed that I wasn’t going away to school in the traditional four-year college route.
Most people I knew went away to college and had a clear vision of what they wanted to do for a career. I was doing the “less exciting” option by attending community college and had not yet figured out what I wanted to do with my future.
The community college I attended offered students at my high school a scholarship to receive free tuition, which is one of the reasons I, and many other students I knew, attended. If students completed enough community service hours and maintained a certain GPA, they received free tuition.
I thought it was a great opportunity and my parents felt the same and were happy that we were able to save money.
Looking back on it, I don’t know why I felt embarrassed about going to community college.
I saved so much money and I wasn’t ready to go away to just school yet. I didn’t want to waste money on a school I may not have liked just because I felt like I had to go away.
Not everyone can afford to pay $50,000 a year for four years, especially with the cost of university increasing. I think it’s ridiculous that society has taught us to judge others for not going the traditional route.
Attending community college was one of the best decisions I ever made, and I would recommend it to anyone. Everyone is on their own path and it may not be the same as someone else’s, and that’s okay.