For any freshman, starting college can an extremely exciting and sometimes frightening experience. Academically talented students are faced with the usual freshmen pressures. Like other freshmen, they can be overwhelmed by new social freedoms, but they have the added pressure of high expectations for their academic performance. Honors programs and Honors colleges offer some very special opportunities for these talented students to ease into college bolstered by a sense of community that comes from the Honors environment.
One option that thousands of students have benefited from is to begin the college experience in a community college Honors program for the first two years and then transfer to a college or university after the sophomore year. The advantages of Honors programs and Honors colleges described elsewhere on this website are also offered in community college Honors programs.
In addition, courses at community colleges tend to be smaller than those at many four-year institutions. Smaller classes combined with lower tuition make community college an attractive option. For many students, community college provides the opportunity to establish a strong academic record and become comfortable with the college experience.
Rather than starting college away from home, students at community colleges often continue to live with their families. The financial advantage is obvious, and once they have completed their first two years, students transfer to a four-year school with increased confidence and maturity. Within the security of community college Honors programs, students can truly develop their own abilities, examine new ideas, and explore their world.
Many community colleges have established formal relationships with regional four-year institutions to provide a "seamless transition" for transfer students who have completed a two-year degree. Typically, the four-year school accepts all the credits the student earned at the community college, may offer scholarships to transfer students, and welcomes eligible students into their Honors programs.