Are There Public Community Colleges with Dorms?

Question: I have been out of high school and working for two years. I wasn’t a great student in high school and didn’t try hard enough, so now I would like to attend an affordable community college and later transfer to a 4-year college. However, I don’t want to continue to live with my parents year-round and would like to live at my college. Do any public community colleges have dorms for students?

A growing number of public community colleges do offer on-campus living although these schools are still in the minority by far.  If you want to find out which community colleges have dormitories, you can try using the College Board’s “Big Future” search engine:

https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/college-search

Under the “Type of School” tab, select “2-year/community college.” If you want a public college (where costs will be lower for in-state residents), then pick “public” on the next line. Next, choose your state of residence under “Location.”  Finally, under “Campus & Housing,” choose “Coed Housing,” and then see what turns up on the “Results” page

Note, however, that some states offer no public CC’s with on-campus housing. My own home state, Massachusetts, is one of them. Attending a public community college in the state where you reside is usually far cheaper than attending an out-of-state community college or a 2-year private college. So, if your state doesn’t offer any community colleges with dorms, you can contact the admission office to ask if the college provides leads for students who want to live with other students in apartments near campus. This won’t give you the true college-dorm experience but might be an affordable way to start your college career without being stuck in your childhood bedroom.

(posted 2/26/2017)