Finally, a community college is helping freshmen pick out course schedules based on their majors to encourage them to enroll fulltime and graduate quicker. Consumnes River College, a California community college, is doing what high schools do for their students: lay out a plan to make sure students know what courses they need to take to graduate. If all colleges laid out a 4-year plan with their students during freshman orientation, students would be more engaged, take a full load, and graduate on time.
Many students who attend community colleges take 12 credits or less each semester when 15 credits is considered full time. When students take 15 credits per semester, they can transfer to a 4-year college in 2 years with the required 60-credits. Otherwise, students who take 12 credits per term only have 48 credits after 2 years, making them have to continue at the community college for another semester. That’s really wasting a full year because most colleges don’t accept spring transfers.
I find that when students choose courses every semester by looking at what’s offered and referring to their general ed and major requirements, they accidentally take classes that they don’t need because they were satisfied by courses they’ve already taken or will need to take as a prerequisite in the future. That’s wasting Mom and Dad’s money and their precious time.
Now that college-bound students are heading off to start college in August or September, this is the ideal time to lay out their 4-year plans. By organizing both general ed and major courses (lower and upper division) before starting college, they’ll understand how to take advantage of the many opportunities available to them once they arrive. It’ll ensure the best ROI (return on investment) for Mom and Dad. Merit helps students choose majors, lay out 4-year plans, and even include study abroad, internships, and research.