As college applications are imminent, looking at one’s options is a critical step in obtaining the apical potential in education and making the right decision. There are many factors that tie into selecting an education path such as thinking about the benefits, programs, and interests the schools will provide. A problem that I have noticed recently in choosing colleges is that people would rather choose a prestigious university for its name and reputation than choosing a university that best suits them and their interests. I see this problem around me especially because now is the time of year when the seniors are obtaining their acceptance letters. There is a myth that community college is a bad pathway to choose or start out from but there has been much evidence and statistics to debunk this myth and that prove that students benefit from this choice.
CSU’s are definitely underrated and essentially overshadowed by the UC system. The UC system is not fundamentally overrated and it deserves to remain at the ranking it is currently at. UC’s are ranked highly which is shown in a report done by the United States News and World Report which ranked 6 UC campuses in the top 50 United States National Universities of 2017. I would not describe a college as overrated because that depends on what factors an individual is searching for. CSU’s specialize in advanced programs and degrees such as business, engineering, art, health and human services, sciences, and many others. There are twenty three of them across California which offers a diverse range of options to pick from and there are campuses for all types of people.
The rightful stigma around UC’s overshadow the CSU’s and create a wrongful stigma that community colleges are bad. What is wrong with going to a community college? This is presumably due to the fact that most people view college as a four year experience instead of a two year and see it as an easy way out. In reality, a four year college is not the only route that leads one to the desirable ending of a respectable and efficient career. A community college allows someone a better place to figure out what major they want to pursue and complete general courses before completing another two years as a transfer to a higher school of choice. Coming out of high school, too many people are still unsure about what career pathway they want to take and what major they want to pursue which is normal. People also change their minds midway while completing their major which essentially wastes a lot of time and money. Instead of spending valuable time and money in a college towards a major one is unsure of, they should take the more suitable alternative and explore major options at a community college.
Without a doubt there are downsides to community college as there is with any UC or CSU but those factors vary from person to person. The curriculum is definitely more limited as most community colleges are only two year and most classes needed to take in that time period are general. A four year university on the other hand would provide a student a more expanded curriculum and opportunities within those four years but that is why a transfer is efficient. The tuition for most UC’s average around $15,000 per year which is costly compared to the average community college tuition which is in between $1,000 and $2,000. Transferring is not only beneficial as it saves time and provides an advantage on making a decision on what path to take but it undoubtedly provides a financial advantage for many.
Like many others, my life has been influenced by the myth that a UC is the best option and I have had that option pushed on me ever since I began high school. This pressure has become more arduous over the years as my two older brothers have been both accepted into UC’s; UC Davis and UC Santa Cruz. I witnessed this pressure instilled onto my brother as he was in the process of applying for these specific universities after my oldest brother got accepted into a fairly prestigious school. With crucial exams and college applications approaching, I feel this pressure being placed onto me. Community college is definitely an option I am contemplating as I am still unsure about what major I want to pursue and this option would allow me to explore my options in a more efficient way. This pressure is expected by parents especially academic pressure is something that comes naturally due to parents wanting their kids to excel in their studies. College is an important beginning to your career and ultimately will point one to which direction their life will go. With so many options and systems around us, it is essential to select the one best suitable for us therefore we have to consider many factors into making the right choice whether it be a UC, CSU, or CC.