How to Enroll in Community College that’s Fast and Practically Free

by A Guest Author

filling out the formOne great benefit about community college is that the enrollment process can be very quick and efficient. After you learn how to enroll in community college, you can take steps to make your whole community college education there practically free.

Attending a community college and completing an associates degree there has a very real chance of changing your life and changing your future opportunities, see proof here. Community colleges typically equip their students with the knowledge and the skills they need to succeed in the world. Unlike private and four-year state universities, community colleges do not trap students into the tremendous amounts of debt that have left so many young people in our country overeducated and unemployed.

Here's how to enroll in community college:

1.     Find out if you qualify for an application fee waiver through your state or school.

The first cost that you will encounter when you're applying for school is the application fee. In some cases, application fees themselves can be quite hefty, running anywhere from $30 to as much as $60 or more. If this fee is the biggest obstacle standing between you and getting the community college application process rolling, consider trying to get the fee waived. Check with your state government or with the specific school to which you're applying to see if you qualify for an application fee waiver.

2.     Apply for the FAFSA as soon as you can.

Going to school for close to free actually IS possible. But it takes a lot of paperwork. The best source for receiving financial aid that is through the federal government, and in the form of grants you won't have to pay them back. The way you apply for this aid is through the FAFSA. If you are completing the FAFSA for the first time, try to meet with an accountant or someone who is familiar with taxes to ensure that you filled out your FAFSA (using past tax returns) correctly. One mistake could mean hundreds or thousands of dollars in lost aid, so be sure to fill everything out accurately. Being aware of FAFSA deadlines for the community college to which you are applying is very important, too.

3.     Research institutional and outside scholarships.

While federal aid can go a long way in helping you pursue an education for free, a FAFSA aid package usually will be a combination of grants and loans. In order to cover the cost that isn't covered by federal grants, look into scholarship opportunities through your high school, the colleges to which you are applying and those offered by a wide variety of different organizations and non-profits. A great place to start looking for scholarships is the site Fast Web.

4.     Consider community college online programs that start whenever you are ready.

If your larger concern is that you want to start school as quickly as possible without having to wait for a new application deadline, it may help to consider community college online programs, many of which you can start classes whenever you want. Community college online classes are often more affordable, and they're more convenient considering you can attend "classes" in your own home, saving yourself a large of mount of time each day that would otherwise be spent commuting. While you will probably end up having to pay for at least a tiny portion of tuition and fees at a community college, you can reduce this amount closer to zero if you put in the time to do some paperwork. It really doesn't take as long as you would think. Good luck!

About The Author

Katheryn Rivas in an education writer who is interested in researching the opportunities an online university and community colleges can provide for students. She encourages your comments at

This post was written by A Guest Author

This post was written by a guest author. If you have high quality, useful information to share with students, send us an email or click Write For Us to learn more. And in case you're wondering - yes, you can promote yourself in this fancy author byline.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Henry October 20, 2012 at 10:10 am

Thank you.


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