Are you getting the most out of your college experience?

By Danica Minzel, Staff writer

While low cost is often a deciding factor, community colleges offer a lot more than lower priced tuition.  There are many extracurricular options and offers that are underutilized on a community college campus.  Are you taking advantage of all that ARCC has to offer?

ARCC offers free tutoring at both campuses where advisors and peer tutors are available to guide students who are struggling with an assignment or who may just need a boost in the right direction.  At the Cambridge campus, tutoring services are offered in D208 which is located next to the Information Desk.  The doors are open at the tutoring center from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Friday.  There are schedules online at the ARCC website for students to see when tutors are available for each subject.

Students who excel in a particular subject could apply to be a peer tutor for one of the work-study opportunities ARCC offers their students. Students who wish to pick up a part-time job on campus that works around their class schedule can do so with work-study.  A peer tutor is just one of the many options offered on the Cambridge campus for enrolled students interested in work-study programs. These positions typically offer up to 15 hours a week during the semester and up to 30 hours per week over summer break.

If you aren’t in search of a tutor or for a job, ARCC still has options for you. There are extracurricular clubs and programs for every interest, from theater to athletics, whether you like to participate or are more comfortable to just watch. For some activities, like journalism and theater, you can have fun and earn college credits!

PHOTO BY DANICA MINZEL      The Campus Eye is a product of the newspaper club where you can earn one credit per semester.

PHOTO BY DANICA MINZEL The Campus Eye is a product of the newspaper club where you can earn one credit per semester.

There are misconceptions that four-year institutions are of higher quality. However, after speaking to a few students who have attended both community colleges and four-year schools, neither one regretted attending ARCC first, as it offered the same opportunities.  Corrie Scott, who recently transferred after her two-year experience at ARCC praised the smaller campuses and the available parking spaces.  “The parking is nice because I didn’t have to park on the street and walk a mile to get to class,” Scott said.

Alternatively, Kelsey Waste, a recent graduate from ARCC, left the two-year school for St. Cloud State University for a semester and then returned to ARCC to finish her degree.  Waste praised ARCC’s staff, as the classes were smaller and the professors seemed more focused on the success of their students. At her four-year institution, she hardly got one-on-one time with her.

“I only finished my [Associate of Science] there but if I could get a [Bachelor of Science] in my field there I would,” said Waste about ARCC.  “Overall, I had a horrible experience and will never go back,” Waste said in reference to St. Cloud University.  While this may not be a typical experience for those who start in four-year institutions, it displays that traditional four-year universities don’t always offer a better education or more extracurricular options for their students.

About the Author

The Campus Eye Staff
The Campus Eye is published by students of the Cambridge and Coon Rapids campuses of Anoka-Ramsey Community College. Campus Eye articles in print and online represent the opinions of the writers and not the college or the student body.