Community Colleges: Our Work Has Just Begun from Chronicle.com. I wanted to share this great article regarding Community Colleges as a viable resource to graduating seniors. Here is an exert from this article:
“Community colleges can also serve as a gateway from a high-school diploma to a baccalaureate degree. They offer an affordable option for middle-class high-school students who want to attend a four-year college but cannot afford the tuition. The numbers tell the story: The average cost of tuition at a private four-year university is over $26,000 for the current academic year. At public four-year universities, the average is $7,000. Community-college tuition averages $2,500, presenting a far more affordable way to complete the first two years of a college education, especially when the credits earned on a community-college campus can often be transferred directly into four-year programs. It is not a coincidence that community colleges educate over 40 percent of all postsecondary students nationally.
For laid-off workers, community colleges offer job-certification programs that teach new skills and professions. Most people would be surprised to look at the catalog of an average community college today—they would find course work in a range of emerging health-care industries, training in cutting-edge technologies, offerings in architecture and green-building techniques, and classes in highly marketable job fields. For an immigrant or first-generation American, community college is often the place to begin a postsecondary education.
All of us have the opportunity to match the dedication of community-college students with a renewed commitment to ensuring their success. By working together, we can maximize the return on the new federal investment in students through Pell Grants, and in community colleges themselves, by modernizing the way classes are offered, ensuring easy transfer to four-year schools, and supporting other strategies for student success.
We know that education is the key to unlocking human potential. And we know that today, on community-college campuses across this country, millions of students are eager to build a more secure future for themselves, their families, and our country. We cannot—and we will not—let them down. As a member of the education community, I ask for your continued partnership in the months and years ahead as we continue to build support for community colleges and work to improve their offerings and outcomes. This is the moment for community colleges. Our work has just begun.
Jill Biden, a lifelong educator with a doctorate in education from the University of Delaware, teaches English at Northern Virginia Community College. She is the wife of Vice President Joe Biden.”