5 Advantages of a Technical College Education
In their final year of high school, students must make a decision about where to get any additional career training. Often this becomes a choice between a four-year college or university and a technical college, also called a technology college. Choosing a technical college education has five advantages.
1. Financial Benefits
A degree or a diploma from a technical school costs much less than a degree from a four-year college. That’s mainly because the average program is shorter—in some cases less than a year. Less time spent at college translates to less tuition and fees. It also means fewer textbooks you’ll need to buy.
Not only do short programs minimize costs, but they also allow you to enter the workforce in your field of choice and start making money faster. Instead of sitting in a classroom for years, you can get a head start on life after college, saving for a home or other goals.
Attending a technology college is much cheaper if a student lives at home and avoids the lodging costs of a university. In 2017-18, students at public 4-year universities spent an average of $10,800 per year on room and board alone.
Expenditures on books, classroom hours, and even transportation costs all add up over the years. By avoiding some of these costs, you can skip accruing more debt than you’re comfortable with.
2. Career Focus
At a four-year school, a student who intends to work in his major must also complete general education hours in subjects like English, history, and foreign languages. These courses are typically not required in a technical college. Having to take these courses can be frustrating when they don’t relate to the career you are ultimately working towards. Why not just focus on the important stuff?
Training at a technical college tends to be more hands-on than that offered at a college or university. That’s because technical colleges focus on teaching skills that will be used in the workplace—not the classroom. At a technical college, the goal is for students is simple: gain the skills and experience required to be successful in their chosen career by graduation.
Technical schools typically have programs running year-round. That means there is no need to wait until a new academic year arrives to begin a career program. At IBMC College, new sessions begin every 5 weeks.
3. Smaller Classes
If you’ve ever attended a large university, you know how difficult it can be to get one-on-one help in a lecture hall of 300 students. Technical colleges typically have class sizes more comparable to what you experienced in high school. Smaller class sizes translate into more personal attention for students in technical schools.
Small class sizes also allow for crucial hands-on experience in careers like Cosmetology, Medical Assisting, Therapeutic Massage, or Dental Assisting. Instructors are able to personally connect with students and provide detailed constructive criticism. Graduates from IBMC College often say this kind of individual attention was critical to their education.
There are social benefits to attending a technical college as well. Students can get to know their instructors and one another more intimately, leading to a better, more memorable overall experience.
Technical colleges are also better able to adapt to the needs of non-traditional students than traditional 4-year schools. In fact, many students at these schools don’t fit the conventional profile of those admitted to academic colleges or universities. Some may be older, have kids, or have served in the military. It’s important that these technical colleges offer resources to help some of these students stay on track.
In general, admission staff at technical colleges don’t focus as much on past performance in school. Instead, they look for evidence of a high school diploma or a GED. Admission staff at technical colleges are aware that we’ve all made mistakes in the past. Grades aren’t always going to be perfect. That means students have less reason to worry over whether their grades are good enough to be accepted.
Students who have been out of school for many years might find a better match in a technology college in Fort Collins than in a traditional four-year college or university. Class scheduling is often more accommodating to working adults, many of whom are also parents.
5. Career Advice
Technical colleges tend to have more focus on career development advice for students than academic schools offer. This usually means career development workshops or more staff members available to advise students.
Additionally, these colleges tend to have excellent relationships with employers and other higher education institutions in the communities they serve. These connections can be helpful for finding a position or continuing education in your field after graduation. By completing externships (similar to internships) with local businesses, many graduates are able to transition seamlessly from career training to their chosen career.