What Is a Community College Essay?

A community college essay is a supplemental process of a student’s community college application wherein they’re asked to write an admission essay about themselves and their background. The purpose of this exercise is for the colleges to have a better understanding of the college student applicant, giving the admissions committee more insight into the student’s life, their community, and culture, which was not usually touched upon in the regular application process. The essay could come in many different forms, but the ultimate goal for these tests is that the colleges wanted to find out if the student applicant is better suited for the college that they’re applying to.

Advantages of Attending a Community College

Why choose to attend a community college instead of a university? First of all, a community college, formerly known as a junior college, is considered as a stepping stone towards a bachelor’s degree. Community colleges often offer two-year courses and confer certificates and associate degrees instead of bachelor’s degrees. Courses found at community colleges are often skilled trade courses that allow the student quicker access to the working industry upon course completion. There are lots of community colleges found all over the United States, and all over the world, such that they’re situated in communities wherein they aim to address the necessary skills needed in their workforce. Below are some of the advantages of going to a community college.

Affordability: It is relatively less expensive to take a degree at a community college compared to a university. The tuition in a community college is half the tuition of a regular university. This is partly due to community colleges tend to avoid having big infrastructure and programs that tend to increase overhead expenses. Let’s say a student has a dream school and a dream college course in mind. To save money, the student starts at a community college. Here’s how it works. A community college offers the same foundational, or sometimes prerequisite, courses or subjects that are usually offered at the first two years of a four-year bachelor’s degree program. Instead of paying for costly university education, the best option is to take the first two years at a community college, and then have those credits transferred to the university once the student is in their third year where they’re starting to focus on the more specific subjects of their degree. As long as the student has chosen the right subjects, the economic trade-off of starting at a community college is greatly beneficial. Also, the financial aid offered for university students is available as well for community college students.Flexibility and Convenience: If you are a person running on a tight schedule between work and home, and you still have the desire to finish or go to college, the community college is the best choice for you. A community college often offers flexible course schedules to working students. A community college is also more convenient when it comes to location. Most of the students that went to a community college are just living from nearby neighborhoods or cities, also a major cost-saving factor when it comes to transportation. Also, community colleges offer night classes, very convenient to those who cannot attend classes in the daytime hours.More Course Options and Job Opportunities: Since community colleges offer associate degrees and skills training programs and certifications, these colleges are often the first choice since they mostly focus on STEM subjects, which provide marketable skills in subjects such as science, technology, engineering, and math. They also offer courses and certification on skilled trade courses for jobs that are in demand. A skilled trade is a type of occupation requiring a specific skill set or knowledge and is generally found in all types of industries. Examples of skilled trade workers are welders, electricians, plumbers, cooks, carpenters, construction workers, and so on. The hiring availability and the need for skilled trade workers never run dry, that’s why a community college is the best choice if a student wants a quick entry into the workforce industry.Quality Education: Community colleges used to be thought of as not at par with the universities in terms of academic quality. That thought process no longer applies today. Community colleges have grown so much over the years in terms of the number of campuses and student enrollment, and this is because, aside from being affordable, convenient, and practical, community colleges have also increased and improved when it comes to their quality of education. A two-year skilled trade course is no exception. Since the focus of the course is mastery and competency in skill, teachers who are qualified and have hands-on experience working in those fields are often hired for teaching these types of courses. Nowadays, community colleges would also hire teachers that have a master’s or a doctorate in their profession. Another contributing factor why quality education has greatly improved in community colleges is because of their class sizes. Class sizes are often small in community colleges, creating more opportunities for student and teacher interaction. A smaller class roster size means that teachers can focus and provide quality feedback to their students.

How to Create a Community College Essay

As we’ve mentioned, colleges oftentimes would request a supplemental essay as an additional requirement in a student’s application process. In this case, a community college essay often focuses on the topic of the student’s community background, what kind of a community, and how involved they are within the community. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to writing a community college essay. It can come in different forms, so long as the main idea is present, and the questions being asked are answered appropriately. If you are applying for college and are required to write a community college essay, below are some of the tips that could help you in writing out that effective and constructive essay.

  • Step 1: Pay Close Attention to the Instructions

    Sounds like a cliché, but yes, being able to carefully comprehend the instructions and the questions is crucial to any type of essay test, particularly a community college essay. This reading comprehension skill will be very much reflected in the way you will answer the questions later on. Read the instructions several times, and make notes if you have to. Stay focused. Make sure that you are free from distractions so that you will be able to discern clearly what the admissions committee wanted to get from your answers. Be mindful of specific instructions such as page format, a minimum number of words, paragraphs and headings formatting, the type of text style and size to use, et cetera. Instructions oftentimes are tricky, so you need to be sharp enough to spot the important details that are being asked of you.

  • Step 2: Start with a Good Introduction

    You need not be the greatest writer there is to create a community college essay, but the least that you should be aware of is that having a good introduction in your essay will always work to the writer’s advantage. Having a good introduction that captures the reader’s, or the admissions committees’ attention, is a good start and will make your reader more interested in reading the rest of your essay. Keeping your reader engaged is the key, and the introduction part is a good way to tell whether it’s worth the time of the admissions committee to finish reading your essay or not. You could start with an anecdote, a quote, or a short story about yourself. Essay introductions are often written as a way to “hook” the reader. One way to keep your reader’s mind from drifting off from your essay is to ensure that you use brief, clear, and concise sentences. Use catchy words or phrases, but do not overdo to the point of being wordy. This is the part where you present your Thesis Statement. A thesis statement is composed of one or two sentences that are stating your position or point of view on a particular topic. It is the overall theme around which your essay revolves on.

  • Step 3: Writing the Body of the Essay

    A community college essay often deals with topics and questions on the student’s community background. To write the body of your essay, identify first the important details about your community that often involves or affects you in any way. List down the name or the place of the community, issues arising from the community, what have been done to resolve those issues, what ways have you helped the community in resolving those issues, what are the overall lessons you’ve learned from your community, and what is your overall view of the community that you lived in. Next is to start structuring your essay. One of the most common ways of structuring an essay is doing a narrative structure. A narrative structure is similar to telling a story. It answers the questions of what, when, where, why, who, and how, but is usually done anecdotally. Since this is a community college essay, values and characteristics play an important part in answering the essay. Also, don’t forget the most important detail: the body of the essay is where you support your thesis statement in the introduction. This is where you present facts, statistics, and references to support your position.

  • Step 4: Concluding the Essay

    This is the part where you provide closure to your essay. More than just saying “Therefore, I conclude”, the conclusion should briefly summarize and reiterate important points supporting your thesis statement. Be careful not to overuse certain words. The tone of your conclusion should be precise and compelling. Refer back to the hook statement, and close your essay by connecting it with your introduction. For a community college essay, a conclusion could be about the values and the lessons you learned from being involved in the community you’re in, what are the takeaways you had, and maybe even what you aspire for your community moving forward. Remember that if the purpose of your introduction is to capture your reader’s attention, your conclusion should then leave your reader with thoughts to ponder on.


What are some important tips when writing a community college essay?

Keep your sentences brief and to the point. Be specific. Remember that your reader, the admissions committee, is almost always running a tight schedule, so they might not have much time and patience to read through your essay if it’s too wordy. Make sure that you understand and answer the questions directly and appropriately. Be creative and try to think outside the box. Be meticulous when following instructions, especially when it comes to the format of the essay. Avoid cliches. Last but not least, always proofread your work before submitting it.

What are some of the common questions being asked in a college application essay?

Some of the common questions being asked in a college application essay include personal growth; writing about a person you admire; a challenging experience; how you overcome obstacles or solving a problem; your thoughts on the issues your community is currently facing; your thoughts on trending topics or national issues; and your beliefs and passions.

What are the common steps when applying for a community college?

Aside from having that supplemental essay that sometimes will be asked from the applicants, these are the usual steps taken when applying for community college admissions: 1) Fill out the online application form on the college’s website. Make sure to provide accurate information; 2) Prepare your high school diploma, transcript, or GED; 3) Be ready to provide your proof of state residency; 4) If necessary, prepare your FAFSA document, or the Free Application for Federal Student Aid form; 5) Take the scheduled Math and English placement tests, and 6) wait for the schedule when to register for the classes.

The goal of having a community college essay is to ensure that the community college has the right amount of diversity when it comes to its student enrollees. An essay could be a tell-all, a look into the student’s background and culture, also a guide for the admissions committee if the student will be a right fit for the college or vice versa. A college essay can also provide the student applicant the chance to shine and voice out their thoughts through words on given issues, more often taken as a time to show off their personality. Therefore, ensuring that the community college essay is written effectively is an important part of the college application process. 

Don’t know how to begin writing that successful community college essay? Our ready-structured essay templates can help you out there. We have on our website several community college essay templates that you can choose from and are ready for download. They are easy to answer and fill out and provide the convenience that you’re looking for when it comes to your college essay application process. Download one now, and let our community college essay templates make you take that step forward to get your college application approved in no time!