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Colorado Community Colleges Giving Universities A Run For Their Money

Jeffrey Beall

Colorado’s four-year colleges are feeling the sting of the low-cost tuition and unique course offerings of the state’s community colleges.

As The Denver Post reports, the state’s 39 rural colleges are branching out, offering courses in everything from gun-smithing to wind energy and nursing they are delivering those courses at much lower tuition rates.

From 1,000 to 2,000 students are enrolled at the state’s community colleges, which are located in the state’s eastern plains and in the San Luis Valley.

Like the rural communities where they are located, community colleges have been declining populations – so the schools are using creative ways to keep students closer to home. Low-cost tuition, sports program or training that encourages students to remain in their home communities.

A proposed bill would allow community colleges to offer four-year bachelor’s of science degrees in nursing has drawn objections from the state’s largest university system, the University of Colorado.