When we entered college, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 was already in place—guaranteeing access to K12 education regardless of race, ethnicity, or ability. Now, as we soon become eligible for Medicare, looking back, the pursuit of higher learning has taken on a very different trajectory.
Back then, most incoming college students completed their bachelor’s degree in four years—a straight shot from high school to college to career. That fast-track college-bound aspiration is no longer the path for the millennial student. Often sidelined by work and family obligations, a growing number of today’s students need to offset tuition and fees by earning a paycheck while pursuing their degree of choice.
Interestingly, the National Student Clearinghouse Snapshot Reports tells us that students who earn their associate’s degree at a community college are more likely to finish a baccalaureate program as opposed to going straight to the four-year program. In the wake of the inevitable maturation of so-called junior colleges, a new brand of community and technical college has hit the marketplace.