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AACC scored in the top 10% of U.S community colleges in a ranking by personal finance website WalletHub in August.
In a comparison of 698 community colleges by quality and affordability, AACC ranked 71st. Among Maryland’s 16 community colleges, Maryland ranked sixth. Carroll Community College came in first.
WalletHub considered tuition, graduation rates and professor-to-student ratio, among other measures.
Adam McCann, the study’s author, said community colleges give students access to higher education at a lower cost than four-year universities.
AACC President Dr. Dawn Lindsay said affordability and education quality are important for the college.
“AACC prides itself on the high quality and affordable preparation our students receive to take the next step of their lives, whether transferring to a four-year program or applying directly to a job,” she explained.
Some students said AACC offers them more opportunity at a lower cost than a four-year university would
Student Government Association President Ryan Kim said he felt free to explore different majors here.
“I was sitting between environmental science and computer science,” Kim, a second-year environmental science student, said. “AACC was a great opportunity do that, while also being way more affordable than a four-year university.”
Matthew Barzal, a third-year dual-track electrical engineering and Spanish education student, agreed.
“The classes are pretty affordable and even if you don’t have the money there’s tons of financial aid stuff,” he said. “And we do have a super great selection of courses so you can really just do classes for forever … and not run out of things to study.”
WalletHub ranked Maryland’s community college system the third best in the country, behind Wyoming and Washington state.