For a truly worldly student body, there’s no better choice of community college than CUNY LaGuardia Community College in Long Island. With students from over 150 countries around the world and over 100 languages spoken on campus, the school is a veritable melting pot of cultures.
Established in 1968, CUNY LaGuardia has made the top of many prestigious education lists. The college consistently ranks as a National Institution of Excellence. Named after former New York City Mayor Fiorello La Guardia, the college is an excellent budget alternative to more expensive schools in the area. Many students continue their college education at four-year institutions, earning bachelor’s degrees.
Students have the option of earning one of three degrees: an Associate in Science, or AS, an Associate in Arts, or AA, or an Associate in Applied Science AAS. Students can choose from the Honors Program, one of three different certificates, and over 50 degree programs in a variety of different areas of study. Additionally, those students who want life experience in their chosen field can apply for Internship Programs.
Main programs of study include Business and Technology, Creative Arts, Computer Programs, Engineering, Education and Teaching, Law and Labor Organizing, Foodservice Management, Healthcare, Math and Science, and Liberal Arts/General Studies. Whether it’s veterinary technology, Latin American studies, or international business, there’s something for all areas of academic interest.
Since previous education history can vary from school to school, a number of different non-credit courses are available in a number of areas of study, from math to English. There are also English as a Second Language courses.
Most Popular Fields of Study
Students applying for the first time, whether right out of high school or after a hiatus in learning, need to submit their official high school diploma or G.E.D. along with a completed application. International students need to provide a translated version of their official high school diploma. International students will also need to provide proof of a valid student visa.
Students do not have to provide their ACT or SAT test scores, because ACT placement testing will occur after admittance to the school. However, for students who have already taken the ACT, that can serve as a waiver to the school’s placement tests.
Over 70 percent of students qualify for some form of financial aid, with lower in-state tuition rates available even to some undocumented students. Put that on top of the fact that the school already has the lowest tuition in New York, and getting a top rate education has never come at a better price.
The Office of Student Financial Aid Services is an excellent place to begin, with a number of professional counselors who will assist students in the completion of their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form and scholarship applications. Residents of New York City save a significant amount of money just by being residents, which is important to consider.
The usual financial assistance, including Federal Work-Study and Pell Grants, are all available for students. In addition to need-based financial aid, the college also offers a number of merit-based scholarship, including the Foundation Scholarship and the National Science Foundation Scholarship, for those planning on majoring in Computer Science, Mathematics, or Engineering.
Much in the tradition of New York City itself, the student body is exceptionally diverse. In addition to students from the city and the state, a number of out-of-state students are drawn to the school for its location and low cost. It’s not just Americans who find themselves attending the college. Over 150 countries and 100 languages are represented on campus, leading to an incredible diversity.
One of the most popular on-campus activities is the Student Government Association, with its 12 student-elected members serving the needs of the whole student body by planning special activities and events for the entire campus. Clubs are also a very popular pastime, with any student attending school capable of starting a club based on their interests. Among the different clubs and organizations are Amnesty International, Open Source Computer Club, a Straight and Gay Alliance, Circle K International, Psychology Club, and Merengue/Bachatta Club.
Over 25,000 students attend, with a percentage of the student body living on campus while most students commute.
Student Enrollment Demographics
Athletically-inclined students have a number of choices for team sports, club sports, and fitness opportunities. Male students can choose from men’s intramural and club basketball, table tennis, and volleyball. There is also men’s intramural football, handball, and softball. Women athletes have the choice between basketball, handball, soccer, volleyball, table tennis, and softball.
Elisabeth Bailey is a freelance writer and editor with particular interests in academics, food,and sustainability . She is also the author of A Taste of the Maritimes: Local, Seasonal Recipes the Whole Year Round and writes regularly for Canadian Farmers’ Almanac and the National Wildlife Federation. Elisabeth and her family live and enjoy great local food in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.
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