Is a community college education a bad one?

  1. Is the education and degree you get from a community college really not as good as one from a four-year state or private college? Are there any benefits of goint to a community college?
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  2. 18 Comments

  3. by   nurse4theplanet
    When people ask this question it really burns my butt...:angryfire. There are MANY people out there that think a community college is not as good as a university, however, that is soooooooo UNTRUE.

    I love my CC. It has the best reputation in our tri-state area for turning out spectacular nurses. The tuition is less expensive, the class is small, and we train at the exact same hospitals sooner and longer than many of the University Students. I am very proud of the depth of knowledge and independence that I have aquired throughout my program.

    And just as an aside.... A couple weeks back at a local hospital, we were doing clinicals alongside another group of BSN students who were within a semester of graduating. My friend nudged my arm, pointing at one of these students standing at the med cart down the hall. She was getting frustrated trying to draw up something from a vial. It was POWDER!!! It took her about 10min to finally figure it out while we just snickered to ourselves. Geez! I was thankful that day that I had learned so much, and had so much clinical experience to draw from. Later that day she told us that they didn't even begin clinicals until after their third semester.

    Not to say that a University is not a great place to attain your degree. There are many awesome programs and opportunities available. However, the quality is not any better just because it costs more, or you go longer. You really should check in deeper to the programs, schools, accreditation, and NCLEX pass rate. (Ours is 99%!!!!)
  4. by   Kay28
    What school do you go to?
  5. by   Finallyat40
    I sure hope not, because that's where I graduated from! Our local community college has the reputation of being very hard on it's students (and they are) especially compared to most of the universities.....I wouldn't trade mine....I truly feel that my instructors wanted us to survive and conquer, and yes, there were times that I would have liked to string them up! I graduated last December and entered an internship program for the NNICU with five other ladies, all the rest were BSN graduates. I've been told by many of our coworkers that they think that my skills were much further along, especially my critical thinking. I take that as a direct compliment to the program I completed!
    Jamie
  6. by   Fraggle
    Either CC of University, it depends on the school. I've attended both a Big Ten University and now my local community college. Both have strong points and weaknesses. I've found that some times the expectations are a little lower at the CC and others a particular assignment has kicked my butt. Same at the University.

    My only gripe is that most of my classes at CC have graded my written work too easily. But I think I have high expectations in that area. On the other hand, a lot of people expect the CC to hold their hands through education and it doesn't happen. Plenty of smart people have failed out during nursing courses.

    I wouldn't trade having been young and living away at university for anything, though.
  7. by   OBRNinTN
    I have to weigh in here too. I did all my pre-req's at a community college, and I now go to a university, and the community college was so much more difficult and demanding. From my experience anyway.
  8. by   thatoneguy
    well to be honest JC's are better, as far as teaching goes. less students in clinicals, the instructors can spend more time teaching and showing this or that. at my JC in my last year, 4 quarters, all of my teachers either did or was also working at USC, UCLA, mary mount or other university. in fact i am currently getting ready to enter the masters program at cal state domingus, where my advanced med surg clinic instructor teaches. O now there is one reason not to tell your current instructors off. anyway same teacher for less money with more intamint teaching.
  9. by   SeekingNur
    There are entirely too many factors to weigh when deciding which is better, you can't just make a generalization that one system is better than the other. In many areas the same teachers teach the same courses at the JC and at the local university. I've attended more schools than I care to admit, in three different states, both JCs and Universities and each individual school has had it's strengths and weaknesses. You must evaluate class size, the quality of the teachers, and just because a course is difficult doesn't mean that you will learn more. A program may have a lot of people flunk out because it is poorly taught, not because it is extremely good.

    If you are trying to decide what program to do, then you need to look at the individual programs.
  10. by   Nursebaby23
    Locality, cost, and pass rates are definitely important. I have tried the BSN thing, and found that the environment was very competitive. I really questioned the qualities that particular BSN program was looking for. I started as an LPN, and my academic advisor has me all screwed up! I decided to come back home and do the local ADN program, and I love it! I know with a BSN there are more management opportunities, but you acquire the same license. If you are a RN going back for your BSN, often most schools have a shorter completion time compared to going the whole 4 years. A nurse can only be as good as the nursing school he/she graduated from. There are many, many things to consider when you decide where you want to go. As competitive as these programs are, most people just choose the program they get accepted into first! Good luck to you!
  11. by   Tweety
    I graduated from an NLN approved ADN program at a community college. It transfered easily to an RN to BSN program.

    It was a very quality education that I'm proud of.
  12. by   Dayray
    I also got my ADN from a CC. In the city I went to school in employers said they preferred new grads from the CC. I have no doubt that I got a very good education.

    In general you get more clinical time and more practical training from CC where as you get more theory and case management and management training from a UNV. I'm sure it varies from school to school and area to area but ADN's are seen as having a jump on BSN students when they start on the floor. The reason being that most CC's have more clinical time, smaller classes and a more hands on approach to teaching. However if you have an ADN and want to get into management or some public health positions you'll find it a challenge.

    Also in my state there is an articulation model for ADN to BSN and it is more difficult for an ADN to become a BSN then it would be for someone who had an associates in general science. It really stinks because it would take me 2 more years to get a BSN. That wouldn't be so bad if my 2 year associates really only took 2 years to get but it doesn't.

    People call them 2-year degrees but the actual nursing part of it is 2 years. It takes at least a year and a half to get your preqs out of the way most take 2 years so by the time your done its a 3 1/2 year or 4 year degree.

    I would very gladly trade the fact that my first 6 months on the floor went easier to be able to get into a masters program without spending 2 more years and thousands of dollars to get a BSN now.
  13. by   Jessy_RN
    There are too many factors take in account.

    I attend a very expensive private college and no I don't think our school or education is any better thant the local cc's. Many who have transfered into our college from the cc, say it is much harder here and the class size is just perfect but educational wise I don't think there is a difference.
  14. by   Agnus
    I believe if you do the reasearch you will fine the majority of nurses attended community college.

    With that said. It depends entirely on the individual school. You can have two or 3 community colleges withing a few miles of one another, all under the same system, and one may be better or worse.

    I have see situations were the community college was better than the university or the private school and visa versa.

    I don't believe you can make a blanket statement an be correct.

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