Think you can’t afford college? Think again.

When many Americans think about going to college, the high cost of obtaining a college education is on their mind. And it should be. College tuition has more than doubled since the 1980s, with costs rising over 25% just in the past decade. Some of the most expensive private colleges can easily run over $50,000 a year – just for tuition.

While most of us won’t wind up attending an Ivy League school, according to The Best Schools, all colleges and universities have seen substantial cost increases, rising from 129% to over 200% since the 1980s. By contrast, wages have only risen by about 70% during that same time.

College still provides lifelong earning benefits for graduates, but it’s more important than ever to be smart with how you plan your education.

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That’s where Joshua Tree’s Copper Mountain College comes in. By attending a community college for a student’s first two years of college progress towards a four-year bachelor’s degree, the cost of that degree can be slashed dramatically. According to the personal finance blog Vittana, the average cost of tuition and fees at a four-year private university runs about $130,000. If the student attends community college for the first two years and then transfers to a four-year university to complete their bachelor’s degree, that cost drops to under $80,000 on average.

Of course, at Copper Mountain College, students can obtain an associate degree in numerous subjects, from business to computer science, or earn a certificate in their professional area of interest, without having to attend a four-year college or university. Want to be a wildland firefighter for the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, or National Park Service? Enroll in CMC’s Wildland Fire Academy. The college even has its own fire engine. Want to be a nurse? CMC offers great options for your career path with our nursing program ranked second in California. Is a career in automotive repair and smog checks your thing? The college can help you with that as well.

And at CMC, it gets even better. The college is local, so that can help cut down on living expenses. There’s a lot of flexibility with more than half of CMC’s classes being offered online. And there’s a lot of support for students to ensure they can not only enroll but succeed with their education. Plus, there’s the opportunity to grow personally, join student clubs and activities, participate in college athletics, and to meet new friends to share your college journey, while attending college locally on our 80-acre campus in Joshua Tree.

For Spring Semester, which is open for enrollment now, with classes beginning on January 27, Copper Mountain College is offering tuition, fees, tutoring, bus passes, wi-fi, laptop loans, means and snacks, and medical and mental health services – all at no cost to students. Students are encouraged to apply for financial aid and will be enrolled into the Promise Program when eligible, with career exploration and counseling available to help them create a successful education that meets their needs.

Students wanting to transfer to a four-year college or university from Copper Mountain College can rest easy knowing that the credits they earn in Joshua Tree will be a guaranteed transfer for all CSU universities, as well as many UC and other universities and colleges. And students who want to obtain their high school completion or GED, or learn English as a Second Language, can benefit from CMC’s Adult Education program.

For students who want to continue their education or train for a career, there’s no better time to begin, and no better place to enroll than Copper Mountain College. With Spring Semester enrollment open now, please visit for more information.

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