Community college cuts down price of education


Photo credit: Chase Falk

Summer is really just a chance to catch up on lost time; whether it’s by sleeping, relaxing, or retaking classes that didn’t go very well during the spring semester.

Panic rises in students when they realize their low grades might cause them to disrupt their four-year plans. Filling their summers with makeup units seems like the right way to go, but the cost could be too great.

Undergraduate classes at Chico State during the summer costs $286 per unit according to the Chico State website. For a three unit class, that’s $858. That can quickly add up for students who are trying to make up for units or get ahead.

Having classes cost that much seems like a penalty and is discouraging, if not impossible for students who cannot afford it. However, there is a way to still continue education outside out the fall and spring semesters.

Butte Community College offers courses for just $46 unit, according to the college website. Chico State courses are offered at six times that price. Butte Community College’s website makes it easy for students to apply to summer courses. With step by step instructions and a much cheaper price, the better option is clear.

These contrasting course costs aren’t exclusive to Butte County. Community college is notorious for being an affordable alternative to university. The big controversy resides in people’s preformed biases about community college itself.

According to the Community College Review, “many people assume that the only reason students attend community college is because they were not accepted by a regular university.”

While these misconceptions can turn several students away from starting their college careers at a community college, the benefits and pricing of the offered courses make for the perfect summer term.

For those more afraid of missing out on summer activities, organization and research can help keep the balance. An extra year at a university may be worth if for some, but most students are attempting to get their degree and enter the real world. The mountains of debt that can pile up just by paying tuition are enough motivation to make most students ready to finally be free from college.

Taking three makeup courses over the Summer wouldn’t sacrifice too many beach days. Spreading out the courses evenly throughout a schedule and planning times wisely can help students have a more productive summer. Having one foot in the door toward an on time graduation and saving money is worth missing a few bonfires over.

Not only is there ultimately no reason to take summer courses at a university, utilizing the three month break to stay on track is essential. While not every unit may be transferred over from community colleges, tracking the one’s that are available through can put students significantly ahead of their peers.

There isn’t only one option when it comes to taking courses over the summer. Although Chico State might have some pricier courses, community colleges like Butte offer similar classes to help students stay on track for graduation.

Kyra Stemplinger can be reached at [email protected] or @TheOrion_News on Twitter.