NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

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NECC students discuss the benefits of attending a Community College

Every now and then you may hear others talk poorly about community college and maybe label it as a type of school people go to when they weren’t smart enough to get accepted into a four year college right away. This in fact is not true.

According to, the biggest reason most people attend community college is because of cost of tuition.

When you attend a community college you get those first two years out of the way for a lot cheaper than what it would be to do your first two years at a university. Therefore when you finish at a community college and transfer, you’re only having to pay for two years versus four. A former Northern Essex student, Moesha Murray, just recently transferred to Umass Lowell.

“Attending Northern Essex first and then transferring was my best option,” Murray said. “I was able to save money and get my first 2 years out of the way.”

Just like Murray, this is what many community college students’ goals are.Another reason why people attend community college is because it has a flexible schedule. Although at a four year college you are able to register for the classes you want, their class schedules aren’t always as flexible as a community colleges.

Community colleges typically offer far more night classes than universities and they also have more schedule options. So, for someone who is trying to attend school but also need to work a full time job, going to community college makes it a bit more easier for them to do so.

A Northern Essex nursing major, Glorinette Calderone says, “ I definitely don’t think I would be able to attend a university right now on top of working my full time job. The thing about Northern Essex is that as long as I go early enough, I can almost pick out my whole entire schedule and get the class times that I need so that I can still continue to work my full time job.”

Lastly, attending a community college is good for students who graduate high school and still don’t really know what they want to do for the rest of their lives.

Instead of spending thousands of dollars at a university studying something that you’re not really sure of, its better to go to a community college because you are able to explore majors and hopefully find something that you love and that you want to continue an education of at a university.

Because community college classes cost less, you are able to explore more and take on different kind of classes and find your passion.

A Northern Essex liberal arts major, Maura McCarthy said, “Attending community college was what was best for me because I truly had no idea what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I was always so overwhelmed with having to try and pick something so i decided to attend Northern Essex and explore my options. I take a variety of different classes and it helps me find what I do like and what I don’t like.”

Community colleges benefit students in many different ways and luckily, there are plenty of them around.

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