A rant about perceptions of community college

Back in February 2017, the city of San Francisco became the first in the nation to reach a deal in providing free college tuition at City College. I forgot I had this rant written in my email drafts where I used to vent out my feelings. Now I can just put them in this blog! lol

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I say this as someone who attended community college in high school and over the summers during undergrad, and as someone who currently works at one. I hate the stigma surrounding community colleges. There is nothing WRONG with attending community college instead of a 4 year undergraduate institution. Many students transfer, some go for trade school, some only want to get their AA/AS, and some want to go back to school after changing life goals. There are so many different possibilities. Maybe they didn’t get into a university, maybe they want to save money, or maybe the profession they are going into doesn’t require a bachelor’s degree. Maybe life just got in the way. Whatever the reason, society doesn’t need to judge. It also shouldn’t matter to others how long  it takes for someone to finish school, as long as they have their goals in mind. So what if someone doesn’t get their BA in 4 years, or if someone stays 3+ years at a CC before transferring. If you don’t know what’s going on in someone’s life that could affect their education, don’t make assumptions. It also doesn’t matter how old someone is or what their background (veterans, foster youth, previously incarcerated, etc.) is. What the great thing about nontraditional students is, is that they have so much drive when there is so much going against them. SF recently became the first city in the U.S. to offer their residents free community college. I think that’s a great thing, and yes I know tax dollars help fund it. Giving everyone the opportunity to grow and educate themselves is something that will benefit the future. It’s finally giving that someone and their family another reason to attend after worrying about the financial impact of going to college. Someone recently said to me that it’s a waste of tax dollars and it’s not fair for those who have to pay. They also said it’s a waste because people who would attend for free would take it for granted and drop out. That is a huge assumption and I think they forgot that going to community college is a CHOICE and if they didn’t want to attend, they wouldn’t or at least find out quick enough after a semester that school wasn’t for them. Okay rant over. Judgemental people suck.

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I think this was a good entry to post in time for those graduating this year. Whether it took you 4 years or 7, your degree is equally valuable. If you’re a high school senior reading this and not going straight to university, don’t feel bad. I think community college is a great option. Or maybe you’re not going to college and have other plans. You do you, and do whatever it takes to reach your goals.

 

 

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