Earning a bachelor’s degree does not have to mean spending (at least!) four years at a college or university that may be far from home and then graduating with a load of student debt. Starting at community college is an affordable way to accomplish general education requirements and balance a busy life before transferring to finish your bachelor’s degree. Here are some more reasons to consider a community college transfer path.
It’s no secret that college is expensive. Between 2008 and 2018, the average tuition at four-year public colleges increased in all 50 states, on average, by about 37%. Net costs (the price of attendance minus grants, scholarships, and other gift financial aid) increased by about 24%. According to Federal Reserve Economic Data (FRED), as of the first quarter of 2021, Americans owed over $1.7 trillion in student loan debt.
A student who starts at community college and transfers to Walsh College to complete their bachelor’s degree can save $35,000-$60,000 over traditional four-year public and private colleges and universities. At 1.9%, Walsh’s student loan default rate is considerably lower than the national average of 9.7%. Walsh also offers a wide range of scholarship opportunities for transfer students.
Community colleges often offer more flexible class schedules than four-year schools. Students balancing work and other priorities may have broader options to take classes online or in a virtual format, combining time online and time on campus. Flexible scheduling continues to be available at Walsh, with a variety of course types including 100% online, remote synchronous courses offered in dynamic connected classrooms and traditional on-campus courses at convenient locations. Walsh offer four 11-week semesters throughout the year and classes generally meet once a week.
Personal Attention and Support
Class sizes at community colleges are often smaller than first- or second-year courses at four-year schools. Smaller class sizes give students a greater opportunity to connect with faculty, whether it’s for assistance or just to ensure their professor can match their face to their name. Community college students who transfer to Walsh will continue to enjoy that same personal attention from faculty and connect with peers in small classes, whether they attend online, on ground or a combination of each.
Easy Transfer Process
Not all transfer processes are the same. Some schools have strict requirements for which credits they will accept, depending on the credits completed and the program a student is entering. Look for a school with a flexible transfer process, where as many credits as possible will be accepted. Walsh has been partnering with community colleges for more than 50 years and has earned a reputation for providing a smooth and supportive transfer process. In fact, Walsh has been named one of the most transfer-friendly schools in the U.S. and accepts up to 90 credits for incoming transfer students.
Time to Completion
Some students take their time moving through their program and others are focused on graduating and starting their career as soon as possible. Concurrent enrollment programs like Walsh Now allow students to take classes toward their bachelor’s degree while finishing up at their community college. For students planning on moving right into a master’s program, FastTrack provides the opportunity to complete a bachelor’s and master’s program in as little as two years.
The community college transfer pathway offers a number of benefits. Not only is it a wise choice financially, but it also offers personal attention, support and flexibility that may be harder to find at a larger four-year institution. A student who begins at community college and finishes at Walsh enjoys a strong start and finishes with a bachelor’s degree from an internationally ranked, private business school. That is a win-win situation.
For more information, visit walshcollege.edu.