Chart: The Savings of Dual Enrollment
This time of year emails from one my Google Alerts, set to the keywords “college degree,” flood my inbox with stories from local papers around the country celebrating students who have not only graduated high school, but done so with junior college credits and even in some cases full-blown degrees under their belts. These students have participated in dual enrollment programs, wherein high schools and colleges collaborate to offer college courses to high school students which then earns them credits at both institutions.
While the articles usually celebrate the premature academic achievement and head start on college, the potential tuition savings of the arrangement don’t receive much, if any, mention. However, this can be a critical savings strategy for the students willing to step to it. Usually dually enrolled high schoolers get to earn these college credits at severely discounted or completely waived tuition rates. Kids who enroll in my local JuCo via its dual enrollment program get to take college coursework for free, and this is not uncommon.
This chart, brought to us by Charlie Boss of the Columbus Dispatch, explores the potential savings earned by recent high school graduates in Columbus, Ohio, thanks to dual enrollment’s benefits. Note the number of students per high school and divide that into the potential amount saved at both Ohio public and private colleges. It is not at all uncommon for these students to save tens of thousands of dollars for spending their high school time in a college classroom.
Certainly, in addition to the more popular A.P. credits high school students should look into local dual enrollment programs. In doing so they have the potential to not only get a head start on college and career, but also several credit hours’ worth of tuition for free. For another exploration of dual enrollment’s ins and outs stay tuned for my next Tip of the Week.
How to Kill Two Birds with One Stone
What if I told you about a system wherein students at 73% of the high schools in the country students could fulfill their high school graduation requirements AND earn college credits at the same time? What if I then told you that in most cases these college credits could be had at severe discount, or even for free? You might be surprised, like I was, that the vast majority of students to whom this opportunity is available fail to take advantage of it. Continue reading How to Kill Two Birds with One Stone
Certifications for Employment
When I ask students why they want to go to college, the number one response I hear, hands down, is “to get a good job” or “to qualify for a career.” We fear getting stuck in the dead end workforce right out of high school. We often seek higher education for reasons of employ-ability; specifically, a better crack at a good paying white collar sort of job. That’s the way to go, right? Continue reading Certifications for Better Employment
Come Up Short? Explore the Reverse Transfer
Normally in this space I write to an audience of would-be college students, high school upper classmen and others who seek to embark on the college path for the first time. Yet increasingly I run into, hear from, and read about the dropouts- former students who didn’t quite attain a degree for one reason or another.
Unfortunately, dropping out has become the norm, not the exception. For many the short-lived college experience can seem like such a waste; it’s back to square one with little to show except the ability to check the “some college” box on job applications and a trail of student debt. As we’ve seen previously those who have college credits but no degree have some earnings advantages over those who obtained no education beyond high school but have been largely in the same boat in terms of wage declines in this job market. What to do with a handful of college credits but no formal degree?
Continue reading Come Up Short? Explore the Reverse Transfer
The Other Reason to Start at a JuCo
If you read much about college finances you’ll soon encounter advice to attend a junior college (JuCo) en route to a four-year degree. With rare exception the justification for doing so is the relatively low cost of JuCo credits. The value of the JuCo education is typically expressed only in its relation to obtaining an overall cheaper bachelor’s degree.
Of course this is compelling news, but rarely truly exciting to a bachelor’s-minded student. We tend to equate cheaper with inferior, as is often the case with all sorts of goods and services. However, let’s now focus on another dynamic of the JuCo experience that often gets lost in the conversation: A junior college education can also provide increased earnings potential to someone seeking a four-year degree.
Continue reading The Other Reason to Start at a JuCo
The Best of Both Worlds
We’ve seen statistical evidence (link, link) that students can no longer muster enough income for college by merely making minimum wage. To that end I have suggested by and large employment in the “results economy” as opposed to the more predictable but less lucrative “time and effort economy.” (link, link, link). But this option often fails to inspire students, who see self employment as a crapshoot. What of the student who wants a regular, steady paycheck and schedule while in college? Continue reading The Best of Both Worlds