Report: What Colleges Should Know About Teletherapy and How to Pick the Best Telehealth Vendor for Your Students
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Many people assume that continuing education after high school means heading off to live in the dorms at a four-year university. But there are all kinds of programs and schools available after high school.
The college you choose depends on what kind of career or field you’re interested in. Not all careers require a bachelor’s degree or beyond, and you might be better served by a specialized program at a community college or a technical school. There are different kinds of higher education options for different courses of study, and some of them have key differences.
Here is your guide on how to choose a college that is right for you.
At four-year colleges and universities, students earn undergraduate degrees, or bachelor’s degrees, and then, if they choose to continue, graduate degrees (master’s and/or doctoral). Not every four-year school offers graduate degrees, but they all offer undergraduate degrees. Here are some different types of four-year institutions:
Two-year colleges offer programs that take up to two years to complete and lead to a certificate, trade skill, or an associate degree. The most common type of two-year school is community college, but they also include vocational-technical schools and career schools.
For-profit colleges can fall under the two-year or four-year category, but often they offer two-year programs like an associate degree in nursing or an HVAC certificate. There’s overlap with what public technical colleges offer. Some for-profits offer strictly online programs. Historically, most schools in the United States have been nonprofit (meaning they don’t seek to make a profit), but the number of for-profit schools has grown rapidly in the past few decades.
These schools focus on a particular area of study or student demographic. Most are four-year colleges, but arts colleges may have a different timeline. These include:
While a person of any race is allowed admission to these institutions, specialized mission schools have a historical (and current) focus on educating particular marginalized groups. These schools include historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs), and tribal colleges and universities (TCUs).
Just as any other college or university would, these schools offer a variety of degree options and avenues of study.
These colleges focus on one or many different types of art. They may provide training in areas such as graphic design, photography, music, painting, production, theater, and/or fashion design. Students at these schools can earn an associate degree or a bachelor’s degree in the fine arts or other specialized field.
The United States has five service academies that provide a four-year education along with military training. These include:
These academies provide free tuition, housing, meals, and a monthly stipend in exchange for military service after you graduate. They have special requirements for admission, while you’re enrolled, and after graduation. Check out this resource from USA.gov for more information.
Most colleges are mixed gender now, but some private single-sex colleges still exist. For men, they are Wabash College, Morehouse College, and Hampden-Sydney College, and for women, examples include Barnard College, Bryn Mawr College, and College of Saint Mary.
Some colleges have a religious affiliation, which can play a central role on campus, or it may be historic only, meaning the religion doesn’t have much of a presence in the classroom or on campus. At these types of schools, you may find students who are religious in the same faith, religious in a different faith, or not religious at all.
If you or someone you know needs to talk to someone right now, text, call, or chat 988 for a free confidential conversation with a trained counselor 24/7.
You can also contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741-741.
If this is a medical emergency or if there is immediate danger of harm, call 911 and explain that you need support for a mental health crisis.