Let’s face it. The recession may have put your dream school out of reach.
With financial aid evaporating and many folks struggling to afford tuition, room and board (and late night beer and pizza cravings), it’s more important than ever that prospective college students apply to “financial safety” schools, in addition to pricier institutions that may not be able to meet students’ budgetary needs.
Remember: Less expensive doesn’t mean less worthy. We’re making it our mission to bring you a “gem” of a school each week on MainStreet to help you make the most of your investment in yourself.
This week: Bellevue Community College
The Goods: Community colleges, Bellevue Community College in particular, are worth a close look. Nestled on 11 wooded acres in the heart of the Pacific Northwest and just 20 minutes outside Seattle, BCC offers exceptional resources (including TV and radio stations and a planetarium), a high rate of job placement and a diverse student body—all for a fraction of the price of the average four-year college. Plus, the dude who played Jesus in Passion of the Christ (James Caviezel) went here. ’Nuf said.
“Having Microsoft here has helped us in a number of ways,” says Bob Adams, the school’s public information director. The company helps develop curriculum, co-sponsors career seminars and provides guest speakers. The company also offers several internships and job opportunities.
“It’s a huge step up for students,” says Adams.
Applications are up 7% year-over-year, and up 19% within professional/technical (job skills) programs, says Adams. “At community colleges, enrollments go up when the economy goes bad because people are looking for new or additional training to secure their spot in the job market. This time is no exception.”
Social Lifestyle: BCC is a commuter campus named one of the “Nation’s Leading Colleges and Universities Committed to Diversity” by Minority Access, Inc. It has more than 800 international students. Also, there are 10 sports teams and dozens of clubs and organizations affiliated with the school.Annual Tuition Costs:
- State resident: $82.80/credit
- Non-resident: $254.50/credit
Full-time students take a minimum 12 credits per quarter. That’s $1,200 per quarter for state students and about $3,000 per quarter for out-of-state students.