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"Community colleges are known as schools where university-bound students can knock out general education requirements on the cheap, but that’s only part of what these local colleges offer. Many also have technical programs that train students for specific careers such as nursing and computer science." - NerdWallet, 2019
4 Advantages to Choosing a Community College Over a University
When high school seniors are deciding how to pursue higher education, they may not initially think of community colleges. Turns out, there are plenty of community college benefits, and attending one can be an advantage for students before they move on to a four-year university. Click to read more.
Why Choose IECC?
There are some great reasons why you should choose IECC!
- Community colleges are typically less expensive than 4-year institutions. Click here to see the cost comparison with other institutions.
- Indiana students in designated counties receive special rates.
- We offer great instructor-to-student ratios so our class sizes are never too large.
- IECC is accredited as an institution of higher education by the Higher Learning Commission.
Our schools offer great things for our students:
- All four Illinois Eastern Community Colleges were named as one of 150 community colleges eligible to compete for the $1 Million Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence. Illinois had eleven community colleges as finalists and IECC had four of the eleven colleges.
- Frontier Community College (FCC) was ranked the 15th best two-year trade school in the nation in August 2020.
- Lincoln Trail College (LTC) student-athletes have combined for a GPA above 3.0 for the 13th consecutive semester.
- Olney Central College (OCC) is accepting students for its new and Unmanned Aerial Technology Certificate.
- Wabash Valley College’s (WVC) Radio/TV department’s TV station, News Channel 15, has been nominated by the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System for the national award “Best Community College TV Station.”
- LTC, OCC, and WVC all have full sports facilities and gymnasiums. LTC and WVC have indoor pools open to the public during certain hours.
What Certificates and Degrees are Available?
IECC offers a broad range of degree and certificate programs that can help you achieve your career goals. As one option, you can begin preparing for a career by completing an associate degree in a transfer program and then continue your education at a senior institution. General education courses are required and, depending on the student's major, additional coursework will be required in the major field.
Another option is enrolling in one of our many career and technical (CTE) programs which are occupational in nature and can be completed in two years or less.
Whether you're considering a CTE program or a transfer degree, students should work closely with their advisor and/or faculty to ensure the correct courses are being selected for the requirements and to ensure a smooth transition to a 4-year university if continuing on.
To learn more about our degree and certificate programs or courses offered, view our Areas of Study to see which might be the best fit for you.
Do I Have to Choose a Major Right Away?
Career exploration can be incorporated into your first semester in college. However, being indecisive regarding your major can increase the amount of time it takes to graduate. For example, if you are interested in a career and technical education program that has "fall only" entry or sequenced courses, you might have to wait to begin your studies. If your basic skills are not college level, your time to degree completion may be extended due to necessary developmental coursework.
On the positive side, if you do spend more time enrolled because of career exploration and major indecision, there is no more economical place to do so than a community college. If you are undecided, it would be advisable to take a course such as freshman seminar online which features a section devoted to careers. Utilize the services provided at the college you are attending and put career exploration at the top of your priority list!
Do I Have to Take an Entrance Exam?
Entrance exams assist in appropriate course placement. If you took an ACT or SAT in high school and you are a recent graduate, the college may use those scores. If it has been some time since you attended high school and your test scores are older than 3 years, you will need to retest. IECC offers a computerized entrance exam called ACCUPLACER. It tests basic math, reading, and English comprehension. Recent high school graduates who did not take the ACT or who would like to retest to improve their scores are welcome to take the ACCUPLACER test.
Testing will provide you with the knowledge of your basic skill level and allow IECC to assist you in a subject area, if warranted. Once you have taken the ACCUPLACER test, the scores will be used by your advisor during registration to place you in the proper courses. We want to prepare you for success and avoid placing you in a class without the proper skills to complete it.
For more information on course placement and the ACCUPLACER, click here.
How Do I Become a Student?
1. Apply for Admission
New students (and returning students who have not been enrolled for the past two years) should apply for admission or contact Student Services.
2. Request Transcripts/GED Scores
An official copy of high school transcript(s) or GED scores must be sent to the Records Office. Official transcripts from any other college(s) attended must also be provided.
3. Apply for Financial Aid
Financial Aid comes in many forms and provides assistance with college expenses. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) should be submitted to the federal government as soon as possible after October 1 in order to begin the financial aid process. Students may apply electronically at https://fafsa.gov/. After filing the FAFSA, the student will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR). See Financial Aid for additional information and speak with a financial aid representative in the Financial Aid Office to discuss options for paying for college.
4. Submit/Schedule Placement Testing
Submit nationally standardized test scores to the Admissions Office. If no scores are available or they do not meet course placement requirements, students need to sign up to take the ACCUPLACER by calling the college of their choice. There is no charge for the first test. Additional ACCUPLACER information, free information, and sample test questions are available at: https://accuplacer.collegeboard.org/students
5. Register for Classes
Contact the college for an advisement and registration appointment. All entering freshmen should register and attend the new student orientation session scheduled by the college if they are enrolled in a degree/certificate program or GECC Credential. Registration dates, deadlines, methods, and more can be found here.
6. Pay Tuition and Fees
The fee statement received by students with their schedule at the time of registration is their bill. Tuition and fees may be paid in person at the Business Office or mailed to the college. Visa and Master Card are accepted. IECC has partnered with Nelnet Business Solutions as the online payment processor and payment plans partner. Payment and payment plan information can be found here.
7. Secure Books
Students may purchase new and used books in the college bookstore or online. Contact your college bookstore for information related to when books are available To purchase textbooks online, or to check the book’s ISBN click here.
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