Which Is Better? A Two-Year Or A Four Year College?


Deciding whether to go to a two year or a four year college can be a tough decision.

by Emily Galvan, Staff Writer

It’s almost time for graduation, and seniors know that if they intend to continue their education after high school, there are pros and cons for both a two-year community college and a four-year university. Jennifer Hurtado, who works in the college and career office in the library, gave some guidance regarding the matter. “With a two-year college, if you end up going to a community college, you are then able to transfer over to a four-year college, where you’ll finish off your bachelor’s degree. With a four-year college, you’ll just go straight from high school and you don’t need to transfer at all. You just complete all the coursework there for your bachelor’s degree. With a community college, you’re able to explore your options, whereas, with the four-year college, you are maybe not having that opportunity to explore.” Basically, the two years is to get your associate’s degree and then you move to a four year to work on your bachelor’s. Going straight to a four year is advisable if you have done dual enrollment and essentially have your associate’s degree going out of high school. This is because in two-year colleges, you can only get an associate’s degree, and you can’t go any higher.

“With a two-year college, you can get an associate’s degree, which is not a bachelor’s degree, as it usually takes about two years. Junior colleges also offer other programs if you don’t like math,” said counselor Diane Kuramoto, “You can only get the AA degree at a junior college, or a community college. Four-year universities are where the first degree you can get is a bachelor’s degree, which usually takes about four years. For the people that know what they want to do, going straight to a university might save them a little bit of time because they are only doing the mandatory stuff.”

Generally, a community college is smaller, has more starter classes for getting your foot in the door, and is more affordable than the four years. As you take entry-level classes at the colleges, there isn’t a guarantee that you’ll have expertise in those fields. When attending a community college, you can stay close to home because they are nearby, and still play sports. It’s easier to balance jobs and school. There is financial aid, and the quality of education is the same as four years. Unfortunately, there is no campus life, unlike the four-year universities due to the students living on campus. There are also fewer networking opportunities than the four years, failing doesn’t prepare you for the real world, and there is a chance that your credits won’t transfer when switching schools, so make sure to keep an eye on it.

Four years are larger, have more opportunities than two years, and you can continue finishing the degree that the two years started. When attending the four years, you have a guaranteed level of expertise, campus life, a variety of sports, and a well-rounded college life that two years doesn’t offer, and they usually have the course of your choice available. There are scholarships for first-time freshmen at college, and they can live on campus. However, the first years are required to live on campus. Information is easy to find in the four years if you want to research more about it.


Despite all of this, loans and debt, and the tuition costs rising, are a heavy cons to the four-year universities. On top of this, recent grads have an unemployment rate of about 7.8%, and some feel that a college degree doesn’t really prepare you for the real world either. With the information given, what choice are you making?