Community College in a Nutshell

Why your option is so... underappreciated.

Kira Newman- Community College

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Kira Newman

Some of the college names where seniors have committed to.

Kira Newmam, Photography Editor

A study about colleges released in February found that 70 percent of community college students in California are not able to complete college. This is raising eyebrows on Woodside’s campus.

 

From the Community College Review, writer Grace Chen explains the difficulties in transferring from high school to community college to a four year college. Additionally, Chen identifies the rates at which students do not complete college.

 

From the College and Career center, Zorina Matavulj, comments on the article saying, “The changes that we’ve been seeing in the placement, or the fact that community college is not longer holding assessment test results and are looking at high school transcripts.”

 

Also from the College and Career Center, Lisa Vasquez continues, “Another reason is that [the students] are needed at work and have to spend their time working for money for their family.”

 

A reason for the incompletion of college would also be the lack of credits. Students do not receive credits for failed courses including english or math. Since many community colleges are not requiring a placement test, they are relying on transcripts from the student’s high school years.

 

The “[community college] classes have a  pathway to statistics or calculus because they realize that students are coming in with different levels of preparation.” Vasquez explains that students who don’t fail any classes and are able to complete college most likely had access to placement tests and/or the pathway classes.

“Prior to new incentives, being trapped in that mediation cycle for english and math is very discouraging to many students,” Velez notes.

 

Seniors Josie Lucatero and Kyle Brda both admitted that they are attending community college based off it’s proximity and it’s affordable option.

 

Surprisingly, out of the entire 2016 Woodside graduating class, 46 percent went to community college. A surprising 44 percent went to a four year, and an additional 9 percent either went into the military, work, vocational training, or were unreported.

 

John Sullivan, a Woodside graduate from the class of 2016, went to Santa Clara University after graduating from high school. After one year at this four-year university, Sullivan decided to transfer to Foothill Community College.

 

He explained how college was a lot different from what he had expected. “It wasn’t a smooth transition. My grades plummeted. And on top of all that, school was $65,000 a year. I couldn’t afford it.”

 

Matavulj and Vasquez explained that community colleges, like Foothill, seem like a better option for many students who either do not think that they can finish a four-year, cannot afford it, or want to transfer to a four-year.

 

Sullivan added that community college is “far less expensive” and will “better prepare [him] to be ready to handle and succeed at a four-year.”

 

After going through this process, Sullivan advises other students to make the choice that is right for them whether it be going to community college, a university, a gap year, or getting into work after graduation.

 

“Just think about whatever is in your best interest,” John concludes.