community college vs 4 years

<p>I've been having second thoughts on UCSD, mainly for its cost.</p>

<p>My family makes around 25k a year, total costs are estimated to be 28k a year (dorming).</p>

<p>I got the "UCSD Grant", some small scholarships, and Cal Grant B (iirc) to add up to around 20k. To cover the other 8k it gave me a work study option (which I think was 3k) and some loans. I took a subsidized loan for 3.5k and my mom said she will try to help me with the rest.</p>

<p>This seems like a lot of money to go to college. I would be happy transferring to UCSD (or Cal/UCLA) after 2 years at a community college. I'm guessing it would be a lot cheaper, close to home, and easier.</p>

<p>So what is the difference between 2 years+ transferring vs 4 years? Also, what are the chances of transferring from UCSD to UCLA? UCLA is much closer to my family than La Jolla is.</p>

<p>Thank you!</p>

<p>Pros of Community College
-Get a good GPA and you basically have your pick of the UC's when you transfer
-You don't have to deal with doing laundry and cooking for yourself. At least, for the next 2 years.</p>

<p>Cons of Community College
-Lack of a "college environment"
-Living at home, maybe making new friends (but likely hanging out with old high school crowd), not being able to live in the dorms and have the typical college experience.
-Possibly feeling out of place at your new UC when you do transfer, slightly harder to make friends, etc.</p>

<p>Good luck with your choice</p>

<p>I guess the biggest factor is living that college life. A lot of transfer students that I've talked to wish they went to an university right away. Staying at home for another two years while your friends are off living college lives makes you lonely and sad :(! Well, not really. But I think after two years of the fun crazy college lifestyle, a lot of people stop living that lifestyle and calm down a bit. From what I've heard, the first two years are always the best...</p>

<p>the estimated costs, are just that. An estimate. If you go for a triple, buy books online, cut luxuries like having a car and eating out, you should be able to stay within your means. 20 K plus work study is a really great package. Don't throw that away.</p>

<p>Prioritize. Had I been in your situation, I'd be going to CC and transferring out. My family isn't the most well off since my dad was a small-business owner that was tanking right around the time I started college, but luckily I was offered a lot of merit-based scholarships at UCSD than I did at other schools. If you can, take out loans. In comparison to private schools, you're not going to be as deep in debt as, say, USC kids, even if you take out 100% of your estimated costs. You'll most likely qualify for substantial financial aid if you fill out your FAFSA, so I wouldn't rule that out. On the other hand, CC has its advantages with easier classes (from experience), cheaper tuition, and fairly simple guidelines for acceptance to UCSD (just fulfill the TAG agreement).</p>

<p>First, like pisces8519 said, 20k is enough for a year if you're willing to work with it. 28k is an average and with 23,000 including work-study or 26.5k with a subsidized loan, you're going to be fine. I took a 5k loan to be more comfortable, but I could've managed without it. Money should not be the issue but there are others. Money you save in tuition will be offset by living expenses at home that your mom (or you if you have a job) will be responsible for.</p>

<p>I'm a transfer student and I definitely wish I had the college dorm experience but the CC route worked for me. Personally, I saved money and was well prepared for UCSD by my community college. </p>

<p>To me, the major differences between the two are the Academics and Social Life. </p>

<p>Academically the teaching style and depth is different.</p>

<p>Socially, a transfer won't have the roots as a junior that a student who was at UCSD since freshman year would have. </p>

If you're an independent learner and took a bunch of APs, a 300 person class will be no problem. If you're more successful with the type of teaching where there are 30-40 students in a class, you're going to be much happier in a community college, especially in lower division classes. You'll have more face time with the faculty at a CC but they won't be the established (i.e. they may have written your textbook, or a theorem in your text) names that you'll find at UCSD. You really have to put an effort in to get to know a professor, for them to know who you are. </p>

<p>Some professors at UCSD really care but some don't. Especially in the sciences, some are very focused on their research. CC professors generally are professors because they want to teach. Caveat: I don't mean to say that CC professors can teach better, I'm saying teaching is where their focus is.</p>

<p>Depth-wise, most community colleges are in the semester system so the classes cover more material and you're required to retain it for a longer period of time (16wks vs. 10wks). I feel like UCSD classes gloss over some of the stuff just out of practicality.</p>

<p>The quality of education and the level of material in any single class (say General Biology 1) between different community colleges will be more variable than at UCSD. Some community colleges such as Pasadena City College, Mesa College, and Santa Monica College are more rigorous and prepare you better for a 4 year than others -- say East Los Angeles College. I went to Pasadena City College and I was very prepared for UCSD. Check the list of feeder schools to UCSD or UCLA; it gives you a good idea of which CCs will prepare you better. </p>

My biggest single problem when I got to UCSD was feeling lost and not at all grounded. It felt foreign and uncomfortable. My class work was suffering as a result. When I found my social footing through clubs and study groups, I started to do much better in my classes. </p>

<p>The social life is definitely different between the two. CCs are like an extension of high school as ucsandiego915 said and most people seem not to want to make friends as quickly as UCSD, not that tritons are especially social. CCs are commuter schools so most people don’t invest time to build relationships. Also, the clubs are better funded, organized and social at UCSD than at my CC and they are the ticket to a social life.</p>

<p>It is harder to make friends as a transfer but if you join some clubs and are willing to talk to people, it’s not a big deal. If that’s something you're not comfortable/good at, UCSD and dorming is the solution. I've made some great friends in my year here. </p>

<p>Transferring UC to UC is not unheard of but it’s uncommon. It is much easier to transfer from a CC to a UC. </p>

<p>If you choose to go to a CC, choose wisely and make sure they have a TAG program with the UCs you're interested in. </p>

<p>If you choose to go to UCSD, you won't regret it either. It's an awesome school. </p>

<p>Weigh your options and do what would make you the happiest and most successful. </p>

<p>Good luck.</p>

<p>In OP's case, he'll pay no tuition and get $5500 Pell grant if he attends a CC.</p>

<p>With your case I say go to UCSD. u dont get to buy all of these advantages and opportunities, and memories with money after u know?. its once a lifetime.</p>

<p>^That's actually a really good point. Fresh and Soph years were the best of my life and I feel like it's all downhill now cause I have to take such hard classes hahaha</p>

<p>Agreed. Go to UCSD.</p>