Why community college instead of a private vocational school?

Private, for-profit, vocational schools offer training in automotive mechanics, automotive collision repair, motorcycle mechanics, and heating, ventilation and air conditioning, and drafting, as well as other technical areas. These programs are short-term and focused, and are attractive to students who want to get employed as soon as possible. These programs are also very expensive, and may cost as much as $30,000.00 for a program that is one year or less in duration. Students and parents are often left with large loans that must be repaid even if the student does not complete the program.

Students often do not consider community college career and technical education programs because they believe that they will be required to take math, English and other general education programs. This is not true, as community colleges offer many certificate programs that are the equivalent to the training that they would receive at private vocational schools. Community college programs have many advantages, such as instructors that are highly qualified, not just as technicians, but also as teachers. In addition, community colleges must meet stringent accreditation and other standards. 

Students can complete a certificate or a degree program at a community college for a fraction of the cost of going to a private vocational school. Contact your local community college for more information regarding the career and technical education programs available to help students meet their career goals.

Next: How do I know if I qualify to take advantage of articulation?


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