Associate Degree Programs

Students attending community colleges don’t necessarily need to transfer to a four-year state or private school to have successful careers after graduation. An associate degree can provide you with the same amount of knowledge and training with less strain on your watch and wallet.

Associate degree programs typically take two years to complete and are divided into two main categories: transfer degrees and career or professional degrees. Transfer degrees, as the name suggests, are ideal for students who know they will be transferring to a four-year college for their final two years of undergraduate education. The coursework includes both general education requirements and electives and, if completed efficiently, earning an associate degree can even put transfer students a step or two ahead of students at the school they transfer to. And if the student also had the foresight to complete an internship, those steps become leaps and bounds.

The second kind of associate, the career or professional degree, is also rather self-explanatory (but we’ll explain it anyway): This degree is intended for students planning to head straight into the workforce. Like transfer degrees, career and professional degrees require the completion of about 20 courses and, instead of spending an extra two years in school, recipients of these degrees can start applying their new skills in the real world right away...sometimes even before they are done with school, as the increasing availability of online classes leaves the hours to work at least part-time in their field of choice.

As students near the end of the program, it’s a good idea to meet with a school counselor to discuss career options. Consider an associate degree the key to almost any door: Registered nurses are always in demand, as are police officers, web designers, paralegals and accountants and all of these professions require an associate degree or higher to be considered. This gives associate degree holders an advantage over high school graduates and those still finishing up four-year programs. If you have your associate degree, you can start earning money to pay off any student loans before your would-be coworkers get their diplomas!

Latest College & Financial Aid News

Another College Cyber Attacked, Hackers Demand $2M Ransom

July 16, 2019

by Susan Dutca-Lovell

Monroe College's IT system was hacked last week, disabling many of its technology systems and platforms as hackers demanded $2 million ransom in Bitcoin to restore access. Faculty, students and staff members were locked out of the college's websites but continued to attend class and hand in homework, regardless. [...]

Proposed Pell Grant Expansion for Short-Term Training Programs

July 9, 2019

by Susan Dutca-Lovell

Lawmakers are considering extending Pell Grants to people who pursue short-term training in order to land better jobs, faster. Federal student aid in the form of Pell Grants can currently be used for college degrees and qualifying certificate programs. [...]

3 Women Charged in $1M Student Financial Aid Fraud

July 2, 2019

by Susan Dutca-Lovell

Three San Bernardino County women who have been accused of stealing $1 million in federal financial aid from Fullerton college, in California, have been arrested by the U.S. Justice Department and are charged with various counts of mail and wire fraud. The scheme involved enrolling hundreds of mainly non-existent students, successfully applying for grants and loans and pocketing the money. [...]