The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

Why SBCC is the right path for me

The Channels Opinion Pages | STAFF COLUMN

I am 18 years old and have been in college at SBCC for two years now. That statement alone is probably enough to have you scratching your head in confusion, but the real question is: Why the hell am I staying here for two MORE years?

When I was 16, I was lucky enough to be accepted into the Alta Vista Middle College Program which allowed me to start taking college courses here at City College while in my junior year of high school.

Before I was accepted into Middle College, I was an academic wreck. I didn’t care about school and had no intention of going to college at all. However, finding this program that allowed me to take classes I was actually interested in while having a Time Magazine based assignment every week and helped me figure out that I actually love to learn.

So why am I staying here? It’s a result of the greatest lesson I’ve learned from being in Middle College and its the same reason why I came here in the first place- because it is the best path for me, regardless of the path others around me are taking.

Story continues below advertisement

Wherever you’re going, there’s a million ways to get there. All you need is to figure out your destination, then plan the best road to get there.

I knew then that I wanted to go to college, New York University to be exact, but after failing hard at my first two years of high school I knew I would never be able to get there right out of high school. So, I headed down a different road then the rest of my high school peers.

Because Alta Vista is in the Santa Barbara School District, I am able to get the SBCC Promise, A  project that will “provide any local student who completes their secondary education within the Santa Barbara Community College District with the opportunity to attend City College full-time for two years free of charge,” according to its website.

Colleges these days are expensive, in fact, on average, the amount of debt students who graduated in 2016 aquired is over $37,000. And, as the years go on colleges get more and more expensive. Gina Rodriguez, star of tv show Jane the Virgin, said in a recent interview with Stephen Colbert that after 11 years of being out of school, she JUST finished paying off her student loans from NYU.

Unfortunately not everyone can be as lucky as Ms. Rodriguez. There are thousands of horror stories from people who are not able to pay off student debt or who live paycheck to paycheck just to pay that monthly bill.

Rather than having to take out a bunch of student loans or having to work full time while at a four year, The Promise Program (and the added bonus of being able to still live at home) will allow me to save all the money I make working.

Does it kinda suck seeing all my friends post on social media where they’re going off to next year? Sure. Do I wish I could be in a position to do the same thing? Of course. But knowing that I can get to the same place that they’re at without having to worry as much is what makes me happy with the decision I’ve made.

Robert Frost once wrote “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by,” and I believe I’m doing the same thing. And in the end, it really will make all the difference.

More to Discover