All students have a variety of opportunities for higher education, and
it may take several years to explore all appropriate options. Students
who wait until their senior year too often feel rushed since
applications for college admission must often be completed in October of
the senior year. Even ninth-grade students need to become aware of
college opportunities since college entrance often depends upon
selecting an appropriate high school program. In narrowing college
Size of Campus
- Large schools (15,000-35,000) offer many majors, extensive
activities, large libraries, urban atmosphere, well known athletic
teams, and usually problems in housing.
- Small schools (under
5,000) usually offer smaller classes, fewer majors, smaller libraries,
fewer total activities, and usually provide greater opportunities for
participation in student activities and/or sports.
Availability of a Good Program in the Desired Field
- Check college catalogs in the Pupil Services Assessment office or library.
- Visit the college campus and major department.
- Talk to college representatives and attend college sponsored information sessions.
- The library and school office (principal or counselor) have the entrance requirements for most colleges nationwide.
Community College System
There are more than 100 community colleges statewide in California.
These schools offer two-year programs leading to the Associate in Arts
(A.A.) and Associate in Science (A.S.) degrees.
- ADMISSION: Admission to a community college is offered to:
- Any student who is a high school graduate.
- Any person eighteen years of age or older who shows evidence of being capable of profiting from college courses.
- Any person who has passed the California High School Proficiency Examination (CHSPE) or General Education Development (GED).
- TEST REQUIREMENTS: All students must complete a college placement test before registration
when enrolling for more than six units or enrolling for English,
Mathematics, or Chemistry 1A. Test results are used in placing students
only, and college admission does not depend upon them.
- GRADE REQUIREMENTS: No specific grade point average is required for admission.
- TRANSFER STUDENT: All community colleges offer a full range of academic courses that
enable a student to prepare for a transfer to a four-year college or
university. "Transfer" students who plan carefully may enter a four year
college as a junior after two years. Planning should be with the
guidance of the community college counselor.
Community Colleges in the Area
State University System
There are 20 campuses in the California State University (CSU)
system. San Diego State and San Marcos State Universities are located in
San Diego County. These schools offer four-year programs leading to the
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) and Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degrees.
- University of California
There are nine campuses statewide in the University of California (UC)
system. The University of California at San Diego is located in San
Diego County. These schools offer four-year programs leading to Bachelor
of Arts (B.A.) and Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degrees.
- Private Colleges and Universities
There are more than 50 private colleges and universities in this system
which includes the University of San Diego (USD) and Point Loma College.
These schools offer four year programs leading to the Bachelor of Arts
(B.A.) and Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degrees.
Note: Financial aid is usually available to those students who qualify in each of these systems.
- Community College Skill Center
The Skill Center is a vocational education program of the San Diego
Community College district with a variety of skills programs that run
between 10 and 30 weeks. The program is open to anyone 18 and over who
can benefit from the instruction and wants to secure employment in the
area he/she is studying. For more information contact Pupil Services.
Financial Aid Information
Where to begin your search for free information on student aid?
The financial aid office at the school you plan to attend
is the best place to begin your search for free information. The
financial aid administrator can tell you about student aid available
from the federal government, your state government, institutional,
private aid, the school itself, and other sources. You can also find
free information about student aid in the reference section of your
Where to find free information about Federal Student Aid?
The major source of student Financial Aid is the U.S. Department
of Education. Nearly 70% of the student aid that is awarded each year
comes from the U.S. Department of Education's programs. Student aid is
also available from other federal agencies. The free materials available
in the financial aid office at your school include the Free Application
for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and The Student Guide and Funding your
Education. You may also request copies of the FAFSA or either of the two
booklets by calling the Federal Student Aid Information Center (FSAIC)
toll-free at 1-800-4 FED AID (1-800-433-3243)(TDD 1-800-730-8913). Most
federal student aid is awarded based on financial need rather than
scholastic achievement. For instance, most grants are targeted to
low-income students. However, you do not have to show financial need to
receive PLUS loans or certain Stafford or Direct Loans.
Information for students such as College Cost Information,
College and Admissions Information, or other Higher Education Resources
are available at the Office of Postsecondary Education website.
You may apply for federal student aid at no cost by filing a paper FAFSA and mailing it to: Federal Student Aid Programs
Mt. Vernon, IL 62864-8608
or apply electronically at FAFSA Online,
using the online application for federal student aid. For general
information and technical assistance you can call: 1-800-801-0576.
Other Online Resources