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Best Community Colleges in Phoenix: Admission Requirements, Transfer Options, and Online Degrees

Medinah Aina - June 18, 2022


Did you know that you can start a successful career without going to a four-year university? Community colleges offer quality college education and help you pursue a rewarding career in many fields. This article on the best community colleges in Phoenix will guide you in finding some of the best schools to get an associate degree in the city.

Programs offered by community colleges in Phoenix prepare you for the workforce by training you with the relevant, in-demand skills needed in your preferred industry. Some programs allow you to transfer credits earned in your associate degree to a four-year university and continue your education. Keep reading to find out more about the best community colleges in Phoenix and job prospects after graduation.

How Many Community Colleges Are in Phoenix?

There are 12 community colleges in the Phoenix area. Phoenix is under the Maricopa Community Colleges District, and the majority of community colleges in the city fall under this system. Some of these schools are Phoenix College, GateWay Community College, and Scottsdale Community College.

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What Is the Biggest Community College in Phoenix?

Mesa Community College is the biggest community college in Phoenix by enrollment, with a total of 20,351 students. Thirty-three percent of these students study full-time, while 67 percent study part-time. Fifty-three percent of these students are women, 45 percent are men, and one percent are undeclared. Ninety-two percent of the student body are Maricopa County residents.

What Are the Best Community Colleges in Phoenix?

Ranking Community College Graduation Rate Student-to-Faculty Ratio
1 Carrington College 64% 35:1
2 GateWay Community College 28% 11:1
3 Paradise Valley Community College 18% 13:1
4 South Mountain Community College 16% 14:1
5 Phoenix College 13% 13:1

The Best Community Colleges in Phoenix: Explained

In no particular order, the best community colleges in Phoenix are Carrington College, Phoenix College, GateWay College, and South Mountain Community College. These schools offer a wide range of academic programs, transfer options, decent student-to-faculty ratios, relatively high graduation rates, and helpful student services.

1

Carrington College

Grad Rate: 64%

Carrington College is a two-year institution designed to help students start careers in healthcare. It offers various certificate options and associate degree programs in healthcare and industrial fields. The school is designed so that students and instructors work together to give students hands-on experience and prepare them to join the workforce.

Carrington College Overview

  • Tuition: $17,674/year
  • Student Population: 986
  • Percent Receiving Financial Aid: 100%
  • Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 35:1
  • Minimum GPA Requirement: N/A

Best Carrington College Programs

  • Associate of Science in Nursing. This program prepares students to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) and begin a career in nursing. The nursing bridge degree can be completed in 12 months and the Registered Nursing LVN to ADN degree can be completed in eight months.
  • Associate of Science in Dental Assisting. This program trains students to understand how to work with dentists, including patient care and laboratory duties. The program can be completed in person, online, and in hybrid formats. It is also offered in various other locations aside from the Phoenix campus and can be completed in nine months.
  • Associate of Science in Electrical Technology. The electrical technology program prepares students for a career in the field through hands-on experience. Students will learn the basic principles, concepts, and applications of electric circuitry. The certificate of achievement can be earned in 10 months and the associate degree in 17 months.
  • Associate of Science in Physical Therapist Assistant. This associate degree can be earned in 19 months. It teaches students what a physical therapist assistant is and covers anatomy, physiology, and human movement using hands-on experience. It will also prepare students for the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE).
  • Associate of Science in Health Studies. This program prepares students for professional or career advancement. It is offered completely online and can be completed in ten months. The program covers general education principles, principles of nutrition, psychology, sociology, and interpersonal communication.
2

GateWay Community College

Grad Rate: 28%

GateWay Community College is a community college in Phoenix founded in 1968 and is part of the Maricopa Community Colleges District. It offers over 160 certificate and associate degree programs. The school has a career center designed to help students with their career and job search needs.

GateWay Community College Overview

  • Tuition: $85/credit hour (in district); $441/credit hour (out of district); $241/credit hour (out of state); $127.50/credit hour (WUE*)
  • Student Population: 4,670
  • Percent Receiving Financial Aid: 77%
  • Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 11:1
  • Minimum GPA Requirement: N/A

Best GateWay Community College Programs

  • Associate in Applied Science in Nursing. This program is designed to prepare students to take the national licensure exam and start a career in nursing. It is only offered in full-time format and includes courses like biology for allied health, human anatomy and physiology, and nursing theory and science.
  • Associate in Applied Science in Information Technology. Students in this program learn the IT skills required to join the technology industry. It has multiple pathways that students can choose to specialize in, including cyber security fundamentals, database development, and web foundations. It has full-time and part-time options.
  • Associate in Arts, Emphasis in Counseling and Applied Psychological Science. This program covers the same curriculum as the first two years of a Bachelor’s Degree in Counseling and Applied Psychology. It will include courses like introduction to psychology, career and personal development, and research methods.
  • Associate in Applied Science in Electrical Technology. This program equips students with the skills needed to join the workforce. After completing the program, students can get jobs in multiple industries like management, field service, and business ownership.
  • Associate in Applied Science in Court Reporting: Judicial. Students learn the knowledge and skills required to join the workforce through the hands-on experience provided in this program. At the end of the program, graduates can find employment in government, courts, freelance reporting agencies, and corporations.
3

Paradise Valley Community College

Grad Rate: 18%

Paradise Valley Community College is a public community college in Phoenix and is part of the Maricopa Community Colleges District. It offers over 100 certificates and academic degree programs in multiple areas of study. The programs range from transfer programs, career programs, free one-on-one tutoring, accelerated programs, online programs, and hybrid programs.

Paradise Valley Community College Overview

  • Tuition: $85/credit hour (in county); $441/credit hour (out of county)
  • Student Population: 6,575
  • Percent Receiving Financial Aid: 79%
  • Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 13:1
  • Minimum GPA Requirement: N/A

Best Paradise Valley Community College Programs

  • Associate in Applied Science in Administration of Justice Studies. This program is for students who want to become practitioners or want to pursue careers in law enforcement, security, or investigations. Students who take this program get a Certificate of Completion (CCL) in Administration of Justice or in any other five concentrations.
  • Associate in Arts, Emphasis in Social Work. The curriculum of this program is similar to the first two years of a Bachelor of Science in Social Work. Students can transfer the credits earned to a four-year university. The program has full-time and part-time formats. The part-time program includes 10 terms and the full-time program includes four terms.
  • Associate in Science, Emphasis in Computer Science. With this degree, students can start a career in computer science, or transfer the credits earned to a four-year institution. The program covers the same courses as a bachelor’s degree. The program comes in multiple pathways, and students in this program will have to choose one.
  • Associate in Science, Emphasis in Engineering. This program offers similar courses as the first two years of an engineering bachelor's degree program. Students can transfer the credits earned to a four-year school. Students with this degree can start careers in various fields including biomedical, electrical, and industrial engineering.
  • Associate in Applied Sciences in Paramedicine. This program teaches students the knowledge and skills required to become professional paramedics. At the end of the program, students will be able to find employment in fire services, hospitals, and EMS services. The curriculum will cover courses like anatomy and physiology.
4

South Mountain Community College

Grad Rate: 16%

South Mountain Community College is a public community college in Phoenix, Arizona, and it is one of the 10 schools in the Maricopa Community Colleges District. It is a Minority Serving And Hispanic Serving institution. It offers several certificate and degree programs in multiple fields. Many of the programs offered lead to more than one degree or certificate.

South Mountain Community College Overview

  • Tuition: $85/credit hour (in district); $441/credit hour (out of district); $241/credit hour (out of state); $127.50/credit hour (WUE*)
  • Student Population: 3,497
  • Percent Receiving Financial Aid: 79%
  • Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 14:1
  • Minimum GPA Requirement: 2.6

Best South Mountain Community College Programs

  • Associate in Applied Science in Cyber Security. This program equips students with the skills necessary to become cyber security professionals. It helps develop theoretical, ethical, and practical skills needed to carry out network security tasks. Students who complete this program are prepared for professional and recognized industry certifications.
  • Associate in Applied Science in Mobile App Development. This program teaches students to design, code, and build mobile applications and take on entry-level IT roles. Students in this program can transfer credits earned to a bachelor’s degree program or apply for entry-level roles. It is offered in full-time and part-time formats.
  • Associate in Applied Science in Exercise Science: Health, Fitness, and Sports Performance. This program prepares students to become personal trainers. Graduates of this program will qualify for the CCL in Personal Training and Personal Training: Advanced certification.
  • Associate in Applied Science in Behavioral Sciences. This program teaches students about human behavior in clinical settings so they can assist professionals in dealing with people with behavioral health issues. The credits earned in this program can be transferred to a four-year university.
  • Associate in Arts, Emphasis in Criminal Justice. This program provides students with similar knowledge as the first two years of a bachelor's degree program. Students who complete this program can transfer to a four-year school or find employment in law enforcement, courts, correctional centers, and security agencies.
5

Phoenix College

Grad Rate: 13%

Phoenix College is a public community college in Arizona founded in 1920. It is one of the oldest community colleges in the US and is part of the Maricopa Community Colleges District. It offers over 150 degree and certificate programs in several fields of study. It has an annual enrollment of approximately 17,000 students.

Phoenix College Overview

  • Tuition: $85/credit hour (in county); $472/credit hour (out of county); $326/credit (out of state residents); $241/credit hour (out of state nonresidents); $127.50/credit hour (WUE); $42.50/credit hour (senior county residents)
  • Student Population: 9,538
  • Percent Receiving Financial Aid: 84%
  • Student-to-Faculty Ratio: 13:1
  • Minimum GPA Requirement: 2.6

Best Phoenix College Programs

  • Associate in Applied Science in Nursing. This program prepares students to work in clinical settings. Students who complete the program can take the national nursing licensure program. It can be completed in four years or six terms and is only offered in the full-time format.
  • Associate in Applied Science in Network and Systems Administration. This program equips students with the skills necessary for careers in the IT industry. The program has six specialization areas including Microsoft System Administration. The degree includes multiple certificates of completion, including Linux and Microsoft.
  • Associate in Applied Science in Fashion Design. This program prepares students for careers in the fashion industry. It equips them with the skills required to gain employment as professionals or self-employed experts. Students learn about apparel construction, design, fashion illustration, pattern making, and draping.
  • Associate in Applied Science in Programming and Systems Analysis. Students in this program learn operating systems, local area networks, business communications, team roles, and dynamics. Graduates of the program can find employment as computer systems analysts.
  • Associate in Applied Science Paralegal Studies. This program prepares students for entry-level jobs in the legal field. It helps develop their communication skills, teamwork, critical thinking, computer proficiency, and legal research techniques. Graduates of this program can find employment as paralegals and legal assistants.

*WUE stands for Western Undergraduate Exchange. WUE tuition is for students in the program.

Best Online Community Colleges in Phoenix

  1. Phoenix College. Phoenix College is a public community college and is one of the oldest community colleges in the country. The school offers online and hybrid certificate and degree programs for students who cannot attend in-person programs. It offers four online associate degree programs and eight certificate programs.
  2. Rio Salado College. Rio Salado College is a public two-year institution and is part of the Maricopa Community Colleges District. It offers certificate and associate degree programs, some of which are available fully online.
  3. Scottsdale Community College. Scottsdale Community College is a public community college and the only two-year higher institution on Native American land. The school offers several fully online certificate and degree programs, from AAS in Administration of Justice to web development certificate programs. It also has online support services.

Best Online Associate Degrees

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Other Phoenix Community College Rankings

Some Phoenix community colleges are known for having great transfer opportunities or distance education options, and others are known for having better degree programs. This section covers other rankings for community colleges in Phoenix.

Best Community Colleges in Phoenix for Transfer

  1. Chandler-Gilbert Community College. This school partners with three universities in the state of Arizona that its students and graduates can transfer to, as well as over 35 other schools in other parts of the country. Chandler-Gilbert Community College also works with its students to ensure that they have a seamless transfer experience.
  2. GateWay Community College. This school allows students who earn an Associate of Science, Associate of Arts, Associate of Business, and Associate of General Studies to transfer credits earned to certain universities, including Arizona State University, University of Arizona, Grand Canyon University, and Northern Arizona University.
  3. Mesa Community College. Mesa Community College offers great transfer opportunities to students. MCC partners with 43 universities so its graduates can transfer credits earned. Some of these universities include Arizona State University, the University of Arizona, and Grand Canyon University.

Best Community Colleges for Dental Hygiene in Phoenix

  1. Phoenix College. Phoenix College is a good choice for a degree in dental hygiene because of its rigorous and science-based curriculum. This curriculum is designed to ensure that students get hands-on experience by learning in a clinical setting. This learning method helps students build the skills necessary to practice in the field.
  2. Rio Salado College. Rio Salado’s dental hygiene program is designed to prepare students to join the workforce after graduation. Students in this program learn to use power and hand instruments, take x-rays, and administer local anesthetics. The program meets the academic requirements of licensed dental hygienists in Arizona.
  3. Mesa Community College. Students in the dental hygiene program at Mesa Community College can join the workforce after completing the program and find jobs in public and private healthcare centers. Those who prefer to get an advanced degree can transfer credits to four-year colleges for a bachelor’s degree.

Best Phoenix Community Colleges That Offer Bachelor’s Degrees

Community colleges in Phoenix do not offer bachelor’s degrees. Instead, you might want to consider affordable public institutions in the state like Arizona State University and Arizona College.

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Best Community College Programs in Phoenix

A student working on her laptop in a classroom.
Community colleges in Phoenix offer workforce training that help you achieve your academic goals and career goals.

This section covers the best community college programs in Phoenix. These programs are ranked highly above others because they offer students good transfer pathways, multiple entry-level job opportunities, high salaries, and high demand in the labor market.

Nursing

This is one of the best programs to study in Phoenix because nursing is one of the highest-paying fields in the state. Students can earn an Associate of Science in this field and then proceed to take the state licensure exam. Nursing programs are typically full-time and are rarely offered as online programs. You can complete a nursing degree in a minimum of three years.

Computer Science

Due to technological advancements, computer science is one of the most in-demand degrees in the world today. Even with just an associate degree in this field, you can pursue multiple career opportunities and earn a high salary.

A computer science program typically has areas of specialization that students can choose from, including web development, cyber security, and network administration. There are also certificate of completion programs available for those interested in career training or advancement.

Paralegal Studies

This is another associate degree program that leads to high-paying jobs. Those with this degree can work in many industries, but especially the legal field. Students at community colleges in Phoenix can get a Certificate of Completion in Legal Studies and an Associate Degree in Legal Studies or Law Enforcement. The credits earned in the program can be transferred to a four-year university for a degree in law and related fields.

Social Work

Graduates with an Associate Degree in Social Work can work as social service assistants, patient advocates, or case managers. A social work program can be completed in two years and in online or in-person formats. Students can also transfer the credits earned to a four-year university for a bachelor’s degree.

Accounting

To pursue a career in accounting, you can earn an Associate Degree in Accounting or a Certificate of Completion in Accounting. With an associate degree, you can transfer to a four-year university or join the workforce. The certificate of completion can be used for career advancement or professional development.

Phoenix Community College Admission Requirements

The admission requirements for community colleges in Phoenix are a varying minimum GPA, official high school transcripts or GED scores, standardized tests, placement tests, age requirements, and residency requirements. Find more information below.

Phoenix Community College GPA Requirements

The minimum GPA requirement to get into a community college in Phoenix is 2.6 on a scale of 4.0. Many schools don’t require a minimum GPA, but students with a GPA lower than 2.6 will have to make up for it with ACT/SAT and placement exam scores. These scores will serve as evidence to the school that you can maintain the required academic standard of your program.

This requirement is common to schools in the Maricopa Community Colleges District, which is also the majority of community colleges in Phoenix. While this is a general requirement, some programs may differ and have their own specific GPA requirements.

Residency Requirements for Community Colleges in Phoenix

Community colleges in Phoenix have different requirements for students based on their residency status. Students who are residents of Phoenix are known as in-district students, those who are residents of neighboring cities are known as out-of-district students, and residents outside of Arizona are known as out-of-state students.

Each of these students pays different tuition costs, with in-district students paying the least tuition. Out-of-district students pay slightly higher tuition than in-district students, but lower than out-of-state students. In some schools, in-district and out-of-district students pay the same tuition. This is all dependent on the school and its policy.

As an example, Phoenix College charges the same tuition of $85 per credit hour for all residents of Maricopa County but charges higher tuition of $472 per credit hour for students outside the county. Arizona residents pay $326 per credit hour, while out-of-state students pay $241 per credit hour.

Phoenix Community College Age Requirements

Prospective students must be at least 18 years old to attend a community college in Phoenix. This is a general requirement. However, some schools may make an exception for high school students. These exceptions will still require students to be at least 16 years old to attend the schools and may require students to demonstrate exceptional academic performance.

Phoenix Community College Admission Requirements: A Summary

  • Official high school transcripts
  • Standardized tests
  • GED scores
  • ACCUPLACER/WritePlacer Scores
  • EdReady Scores

Why Study in Phoenix?

You should study in Phoenix because this city has a lot to offer students, including amazing arts and culture, public transportation, and many job opportunities. Below are more details on each of these reasons to study in Phoenix.

Arts and Culture

One of the main attractions of Phoenix are its rich arts and culture. There are lots of performances at many of the city’s theaters, concert halls, and cultural centers. There are also museums that both students and tourists will find very entertaining and educational. There are also art walks and mural walls that are frequently on display for the public to enjoy.

Public Transportation

The public transportation system in Phoenix is another reason to study in the city. Public transportation makes it easier for community college students to move from their housing location to their school. There are different means of public transportation in the city, including the Valley Metro Rail, Phoenix Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), Phoenix Dial-a-Ride, and electric scooters.

Job Opportunities

There are various job opportunities in Phoenix for entry-level professionals and for career advancement. This makes it easy for students and graduates of community colleges to find employment during or after completion of their program.

They can apply to any of the various organizations in the city and land good jobs that can help them practice their learned skills. Students who would like to work part-time while earning their degree or certificate will also find jobs to satisfy this from government and private organizations.

Phoenix Employment Outlook for Community College Students

The employment outlook for community college students in Phoenix differs based on the employment industry. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, those in education and health services have a job outlook of 3.1 percent . This includes careers like social work, nursing, and teaching. Those in the financial sector have a job outlook of -1.3 percent.

The total job outlook for all nonfarm wage and salary employment is 3.8 percent. These figures are subject to change quite often and are only calculated annually. This means that the job outlook for specific careers may increase or decrease in the future based on the demand for professionals in these fields.

5 In-Demand Phoenix Jobs

This section covers some of the most in-demand jobs in Phoenix for community college graduates. These are some of the highest-paying jobs in the city and are in high demand by employers. They include nursing, social work, computer science, dental assisting, and paralegal. Find more details on each job below.

1

Computer Scientist

Average Salary: $131,490

Computer scientists are professionals who use technology to solve problems and make people’s lives easier. They study computers and work to enhance their interactions with humans. To become a professional computer scientist, you will need to have at least a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Information Technology, or related fields.

However, with an associate degree, you can find employment in various entry-level roles like network administrator, computer programmer, or computer systems analyst. If you do not wish to earn a bachelor’s degree, you can join a coding bootcamp or earn industry certifications that will help you start a career in the field.

  • Average Salary in Phoenix: $148,090
  • Employment in Phoenix: 250
  • Overall Job Growth: 22%
  • Best Phoenix Community College Program: Associate in Science, Emphasis in Computer Science at Paradise Valley Community College
2

Social Worker

Average Salary: $50,390

A social worker is a professional who is responsible for improving their clients' lives by listening to their problems and helping them find solutions. They work with clients who range from children to senior citizens. Depending on their area of expertise, they may work with clients who are suffering from drug abuse, domestic violence, mental health issues, or neglect.

Social workers typically need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree to practice, but with an associate degree, you can work in assisting roles. To practice as a professional social worker, you may have to transfer to a four-year institution for a Bachelor of Science in Social Work.

  • Average Salary in Phoenix: $61,360
  • Employment in Phoenix: 1,250
  • Overall Job Growth: 12%
  • Best Phoenix Community College Program: Associate in Arts, Emphasis in Social Work at Chandler-Gilbert Community College
3

Paralegal

Average Salary: $56,230

Paralegals assist lawyers by handling tasks like organizing documents, making case plans, booking appointments, drafting legal documents, interviewing clients and witnesses, conducting research, and making recommendations. The typical educational requirement to become a paralegal is an associate degree or a bachelor’s degree.

  • Average Salary in Phoenix: $55,560
  • Employment in Phoenix: 8,170
  • Overall Job Growth: 12%
  • Best Phoenix Community College Program: Associate in Applied Science Paralegal Studies at Phoenix College
4

Dental Assistant

Average Salary: $38,660

Dental assistants work to aid a professional dentist, dental surgeon, or related professional. They provide patient care during dental cleanings or oral surgery, educate patients, give instructions to patients on oral care, and provide other assistance necessary at the office.

An associate degree is typically enough to work as a dental assistant, but those who would like career advancement and to work as dentists or dental surgeons can transfer to four-year schools for an advanced degree.

  • Average Salary in Phoenix: $41,950
  • Employment in Phoenix: 9,260
  • Overall Job Growth: 11%
  • Best Phoenix Community College Program: Associate of Science in Dental Assisting at Carrington College
5

Registered Nurse

Average Salary: $77,600

Registered nurses are professionals who work to assess and observe patients, record medical details, and report to doctors. They also monitor patients’ progress and administer medications. To become a registered nurse, you must take the state’s licensure exam after getting your associate degree. You may also want to consider a bachelor’s degree for career growth.

  • Average Salary in Phoenix: $81,600
  • Employment in Phoenix: 57,260
  • Overall Job Growth: 9 %
  • Best Phoenix Community College Program: Associate in Applied Science in Nursing at Phoenix College

What Community Colleges in Phoenix Have Dorms?

No community colleges in Phoenix have dorms. Instead, there are housing options near the schools that students can rent. Living on campus makes it easier for students to get to class and access school resources. It is also a cheaper option than living off-campus. However, that is not an option at any Phoenix community college.

What Community Colleges Offer Winter Intersession in Phoenix?

Some community colleges that offer winter intersession in Phoenix are Gateway Community College, Mesa Community College, Phoenix College, and Estrella Mountain Community College . A winter intersession is a short session between the fall and spring semesters where students can make up missed academic credits.

These classes allow students to graduate earlier, get a chance to increase their GPA, ease their workload, explore different subjects, prepare for harder classes, save on tuition and other expenses, and build skills for an internship. Some students may want to avoid these classes because they find them draining and have less time during winter break for themselves or family.

Phoenix Community Colleges With Winter Intersession

  1. Estrella Mountain Community College
  2. GateWay Community College
  3. Mesa Community College
  4. Phoenix College

What Community Colleges in Phoenix Have Summer Classes?

Community colleges in Phoenix that have summer classes include Phoenix College, GateWay Community College, and Rio Salado College. Summer classes are offered in the summer months and allow students to stay ahead of their classes and graduate early. It is best for those who want to complete their associate degree quickly and transfer to a four-year school.

Phoenix Community Colleges With Summer Classes

  1. GateWay Community College
  2. Paradise Valley Community College
  3. Phoenix College
  4. Rio Salado College
  5. South Mountain Community College

How to Apply to Community College in Phoenix

You can apply to community colleges in Phoenix by completing an online application, submitting proof of identification, determining your course placement, registering for courses, attending new student orientation, and paying tuition and fees. Below is a step-by-step guide.

Phoenix Community College Application Steps

  1. Complete an online application.
  2. Submit proof of identification.
  3. Submit high school transcripts or GED, ACT/SAT scores, and other supplemental materials.
  4. Register for courses.
  5. Attend student orientation.
  6. Pay tuition and fees.

Cost of Community Colleges in Phoenix

The cost of attending community college in Arizona is between $2,151 and $7,642 per year, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Tuition differs based on students’ residency status. In-state students pay an annual average of $2,151, while out-of-state students pay a yearly average of $7,642. This cost includes tuition, fees, and other school expenses.

Are Community Colleges Ever Free in Phoenix?

Community colleges are never free in Phoenix. However, if you want to attend a community college at no cost, you can apply for financial assistance like scholarships, grants, and tuition waivers. These options make it possible for students to complete their programs without paying a dime. You’ll have to check for the schools in the city that offer them and their terms.

Which Community Colleges Are Free in Phoenix?

Mesa Community College is the only community college in Phoenix that offers free tuition options to students through the Mesa College Promise. It allows recent high school graduates living in Mesa to attend the school for free. This program is available to students who have financial needs but have not received enough federal student aid or scholarships to cover their tuition and college costs.

Who Qualifies for Free Community College in Phoenix?

Students who qualify for free community college in Phoenix have financial needs that have not been fully covered by federal financial aid or scholarships. The Mesa College Promise gifts these students the remaining sum required to cover their tuition costs throughout community college.

How to Apply for Free Community College in Phoenix

  1. Connect with a Mesa College Promise Advisor.
  2. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  3. Complete the admissions process at Mesa Community College.
  4. Submit the Mesa College Promise application through the Maricopa Community Colleges Scholarship Manager.
  5. Register for 12 or more credits.

Scholarships for Community Colleges in Phoenix

There are various scholarships for community college students in Phoenix. Students at Phoenix community colleges can take advantage of financial aid that will cover part or all of their tuition. Below is more information on these scholarship opportunities, including a step-by-step guide on how to apply.

How to Get a Scholarship for Community Colleges in Phoenix

  1. Complete a scholarship profile.
  2. Apply to multiple scholarships.
  3. Reach out to the department of financial aid and wellness.

Phoenix Community College Scholarships List

  • Diane H. Thomas Scholarship for Phoenix College Graduates | Amount: $10,000. This is a scholarship for students who plan to transfer to a four-year college. To qualify, students must be enrolled in Phoenix College, maintain a GPA of 3.0, and demonstrate financial need in the application.
  • Helping Hands for Single Moms Scholarship | Amount: Unspecified. This scholarship is available to students who are low-income single moms enrolled in a community college in Phoenix and live in Phoenix and surrounding cities or are online students living in Maricopa County.
  • Maricopa Community Colleges Scholarships | Amount: Varies. There are various scholarships listed under this umbrella. Interested students will have to check through the platform for available scholarships.

Other Phoenix Community College Financial Aid Options

There are many other Phoenix community college financial aid options that students can explore if they don’t get scholarships. There are federal and state grants, student loans, federal work-study, and tuition waivers.

Federal Grants

Federal grants are a form of financial aid given by the federal government to students to help them fund their tuition and other schooling or personal expenses. It is given to students in college, career school, or any other type of accredited higher institution. The amount given varies based on different factors and it does not need to be repaid.

Arizona Grants

State grants are similar to federal grants, but they are sponsored by the state. These grants are given as gifts to students in any accredited higher institution to help them fund their tuition and other living expenses. Some examples are the LEAP grant, SLEAP grant, PFAP grant, ACAAP grant, PEG program, and Early Graduation Scholarships.

Student Loans

Student loans are loans borrowed from the federal government or private lenders to fund educational expenses like tuition, books, supplies, living expenses, and other materials. The loans vary in amount based on the financial need of the student and are to be paid back with interest that differs depending on the lender.

Tuition Waivers

Tuition waivers are a form of financial aid that allows students to forego paying a part of their tuition. Students who qualify for a tuition waiver will have to pay the balance of the tuition not covered by the waiver. The eligibility requirements differ from school to school, and students will have to contact the schools to see if they qualify for tuition waivers.

Federal Work-Study

Federal work-study is a program organized by the federal government to provide students in higher institutions with part-time jobs that help them earn money to fund their education. This form of financial aid is available for both undergraduate and graduate students. The jobs are typically on campus, but in some cases can also be off campus.

The Best Financial Aid for Your Situation

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What Are the Financial Aid Requirements for Community Colleges in Phoenix?

The financial aid requirements for community colleges in Phoenix are enrollment, good academic standing, demonstrated financial need, residency status, and annual FAFSA completion. Below is an overview of these requirements.

Phoenix Financial Aid Requirements: Overview

  • Enrollment in a community college program
  • Good academic standing
  • Financial need
  • Proof of citizenship or permanent residency
  • Complete FAFSA annually

Should You Attend Community College in Phoenix?

Yes, you should attend a community college in Phoenix, especially if you reside in the city or surrounding areas. These schools have affordable tuition rates for in-district students that are relatively cheaper than other schools. There are also multiple transfer programs that enable easy transfer to four-year universities at the end of the program.

Many schools also offer career services that help students understand their industry and career options. These services help students figure out what programs best suit them and how to navigate the labor market after graduation. These schools also don’t have strict admission barriers, making it easy for high school graduates of any academic standing to enroll.

Phoenix Community College Rankings: Methodology

Our ranking of Phoenix community colleges is based mainly on graduation rate. If graduation rate statistics were not available, we used data on student-to-faculty ratios to rank the remaining schools. These figures, sourced from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), best reflect a student’s chances of getting the education and help they need to succeed.

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Best Phoenix Community Colleges FAQ

Do community colleges give scholarships?

Yes, community colleges give scholarships. Students in community colleges receive scholarships just like at other higher educational institutions. However, these scholarships may be limited to students enrolled in a degree program, not certificate programs. Community colleges also let students apply for external scholarships during their enrollment.

Does Arizona have good community colleges?

Yes, there are several good community colleges in Arizona. Some of them are Phoenix College, Mesa Community College, Chandler-Gilbert Community College, GateWay Community College, and Glendale Community College.

Is Phoenix College a community college?

Yes, Phoenix College is a community college. It is part of the Maricopa Community Colleges District and offers various certificate and degree programs online, in person, part time, and full time. Students who attend this school will get high-quality education that will help them attain their academic goals.

What community college has the highest graduation rate in Phoenix?

The community college with the highest graduation rate in Phoenix is Carrington College. It has a graduation rate of 63 percent and no acceptance rate as it has an open admission policy.

About us: Career Karma is a platform designed to help job seekers find, research, and connect with job training programs to advance their careers. Learn about the CK publication.

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Medinah Aina

About the author: Medinah, a certified Career Coach by the International Association of Professions Career College, is an expert copywriter and web designer, helping people learn more about education and careers in technology. She values in-depth research and providing accurate, helpful information. Medinah holds a BSc in Social Work from the University of Lagos and an Eduonix Certification in copywriting.

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