Muskegon Community College ranked as the 19th best community college in the U.S., and the best choice for community college nursing programs by Intelligent.com.
Intelligent.com, a Seattle-based provider of online degree rankings and higher education planning, released its Top 50 Community Colleges for 2021 list, which primarily includes community colleges, technical schools and vocational schools that offer associate degrees and professional certificates, although some of the schools also offer bachelor’s degrees.
“In evaluating these institutions, we prioritized affordability, program selection, reputation, faculty and course delivery methods, including online, in-person and hybrid classes,” Intelligent.com said. “To ensure that the community colleges on our list provide a high quality of education, we prioritized institutions that are regionally accredited. Schools with regional accreditation are eligible for more federal financial aid, and it is easier to transfer credits from these types of schools to other higher education institutions.”
Each program was evaluated based on its strength, student readiness, return on investment, cost and student engagement. Intelligent.com analyzed 1,187 schools on a scale of 0 to 100, and the top 50 made the final list.
“The Intelligent.com ranking validates the hard work by our faculty and staff, our commitment to excellence and our exemplary service to our community,” MCC President Dale K. Nesbary said. “Moreover, this ranking represents a continuation of excellence at MCC. It is the fourth time in five years that MCC has been ranked among the top community colleges in the state (twice at No. 1) and the second time we have been ranked among the top in the nation (No. 27 and No. 19).”
“Community colleges provide students with a convenient, affordable way to earn an associate degree, continue their post-secondary education with a professional certificate program, or begin their undergraduate studies with general education classes,” Intelligent.com said.
The publication, in highlighting the nation’s community colleges, observed that:
- The average annual tuition at two-year colleges is $3,770. By comparison, annual full-time tuition is $10,560 at four-year public universities and $37,650 at four-year private universities for the 2020-21 academic year.
- Jobs requiring a certificate will increase by 11.5%. Six percent of occupations require a professional certification as the minimum level of education for entry, but that number will nearly double by 2024.
- The median annual salary for associate degree holders is $52,830. By comparison, individuals whose highest level of education is a high school degree earn a median annual salary of $36,100.