Maricopa Community Colleges recognized for affordability

All ten community colleges in the Maricopa County Community College District were recognized by the U.S. Department of Education for offering low in-state tuition.  

“Our colleges provide generations of Arizonans an opportunity to achieve their goals through high-value skill certificates, associate’s degrees, and low-cost, high-quality transfer pathways to university degrees,” said Dr. Maria Harper-Marinick, Maricopa County Community College District Chancellor.

Dr. Harper-Marinick explained that “affordable tuition and fees are one of the most important decision-making factors for our students.”

One MCCCD credit hour is priced at $85 and the average annual cost for full-time students is about $2,500.

Dr. Harper-Marinick noted that tuition and fees “are considerably lower than those at universities and private colleges. Tuition should not be a barrier to obtaining an education.”

“We have created affordable and accessible education, so that our students, many of whom are lower socioeconomic status, working and have families, can pursue a degree and have equal opportunities in the region’s workforce,” Dr. Harper-Marinick said.

When students avoid the heavy financial burden on their shoulders, it will ease the stress of applying to and attending a postsecondary institution, such as community college.

Affordable tuition and fees offered by community colleges also encourages students to continue their education and pursue a bachelor’s degree.

“Students save tens of thousands of dollars by starting at a Maricopa Community College,” Dr. Harper-Marinick said. “Our transfer pathways and partnerships with public and private colleges and universities allow students who could not otherwise afford a college education the opportunity to gain a four-year degree.”

Dr. Harper-Marinick explained that over 10,000 Maricopa Community College students transfer to a four-year university each year. 

“Gaining a degree is an extremely vital tool for accessing better career advancements,” Dr. Harper-Marinick said.

According to research conducted by Georgetown University, the median lifetime earnings of an associate degree is about $200,000.

But the Maricopa Community colleges offer more than just affordable tuition and fees.

“We offer innovative programs including first-in-the-nation Apple coding and blockchain technology as well as cloud computing, cybersecurity, UAV training, nanotechnology and micro-nanotechnology, automotive technology, bilingual nursing, drone training, and a variety of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) programs across the colleges.”

Sierra Ciaramella

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