Santaluces High School

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Santaluces High School

The Tribe

Santaluces High School

The Tribe

Rise in Community College Attendance

A+picture+of+a+local+community+college%2C+Palm+Beach+State+College+
The Tribe
A picture of a local community college, Palm Beach State College

In most of the teen shows I watch, the main characters almost always dream of or currently attend Ivy League universities. A lot of people have called this out as being unrealistic which is not too far from the truth. This desire may have been the trend in the past but in recent years, I’ve noticed a heightened desire to attend community colleges.

The cost of university is the biggest reason for this. More people are understanding that it’s financially smart to attend community college to obtain their Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree and if they want, transfer to university, where they have a higher chance of getting accepted than applying straight out of high school.

AA and AS Degree Background
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Additionally, students, don’t value the “college experience” that’s been glorified throughout various media. Having a social life isn’t limited to just parties in dorms or fraternities, it can be achieved anywhere without the looming eyes of TAs. Also, students are more committed to getting their degrees instead of the external stuff that universities have to offer which community college perfectly accommodates. It is more independently focused, ensuring that you obtain a degree promptly.

An academically successful Santaluces student, Mia Parra-Gutirrez, emphasizes both of these points. She’s chosen to go to community college, despite external pressure from others who “believed [she] could do better,” because she concluded that she was “capable of accomplishing what [she] wanted wherever [she] decided to attend.” Community college offered her a program that was closer to home and affordable, so she took it. She also doesn’t really care for the “college experience,” as she mostly sees it as a distraction. However, she understands how it “can help students build connections with others while taking a mental break in the process.”

Contrastingly, those inclined to universities simply need a certain degree to qualify for jobs they want to pursue. Another student at Santaluces, Alan Garcia, has chosen to go to university because he wants to become an attorney. Yet when it comes to the “college experience,” he doesn’t seem to look forward to it because he will be without family support and seeing new faces so it’ll be an adjustment for him.

Personally, I fully understand the reasons for going to community college. In fact, I was sure I’d go to one after I graduated high school. However, once I found out what I wanted to major in and that I had inadvertently gotten close to receiving my AA degree, it made more sense for me to attend university. I’m not exactly into the “college experience” but I can understand why people desire that for their social life.

Overall, whether you choose to go to community college, university, vocational school, or no school at all, it’s ok. All that matters is that it fits the best interests of your future. While the stigma towards community college is still prevalent, it has definitely lessened in recent years encouraging students that’s ok to attend one for their future.

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About the Contributor
Bryanne Elie, Editor
Hello! My name is Bryanne Elie. I am currently a Senior at Santaluces. This is my second year with the Tribe but my first year being editor. I enjoy reading, writing, learning, and sleeping. I'm a part of NHS and have a musical background as I've played the violin and flute. I am so excited to be back to have an even better year and write exciting articles for you all to enjoy!

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