The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

‘You Belong Here,’ a nice sentiment or a mocking declaration?

The Collegian logo
The Collegian logo

KEYLA HOLMES
campus editor
keyla.holmes@my.tccd.edu

TCC’s slogan may be “You belong here,” but some students can’t help but feel the stigma of attending community college.

While some students said that TCC allows for them to grow at their own pace, this slogan, which is boasted on pretty much every poster across the district, has left some feeling like it may encourage the existing stigma.

 “As someone who came from very little, this can be encouraging, as it helps boost the idea that you belong in a learning, advancing environment,” SE student Alice Compean said. “However, for anyone who holds any stigma or shame in their heads or hearts, the slogan can come across as a jeer, mocking them for taking this step.”

For many, TCC can act as a stepping stone for those who are interested in furthering their education. However, connecting with those who immediately attended four year universities after high school can be difficult. 

“When speaking to someone who attends or attended university, there can be a barrier,” Compean said. “If either party has little to no knowledge on the other’s school life, it can be an awkward interaction. Especially with established prejudices regarding who frequently attends community college.”

While the idea of going straight into a university may sound alluring, the cost of community college can be a major incentive. 

“I think anyone who wants to pursue higher education does, at one point or another, think about going to a four year university – live that ‘college experience,’” Compean said. “Unfortunately, for people like the ones from my neighborhood, that isn’t exactly an attainable goal.”

SE student Eder Rodriguez shared that TCC’s low cost and flexibility is an incentive for him as well.

“What brings me to TCC is the low cost of classes and my undecided major,” Rodriguez said.

Although the university experience may sound enjoyable to some, students expressed being happy that they don’t have to deal with some of the possible stressors at four year schools.

“It isn’t just parties and having a good time,” Rodriguez said. “It’s stressful. Especially when they have doubts about their majors.”

SE student Mathew Jewell also expressed going to a university being a major decision.

“So many students struggle with going to four year universities, and don’t understand that there is a major stepping stone from high school to university,” Jewell said.

Community college may act as a way to bridge the gap for those who feel they aren’t ready for a university.

“There is a sense of comfortability for students that are scared for the next step in their educational journey,” he said.

Rodriguez said that community college makes him feel like he has more wiggle room for mistakes.

“TCC makes it feel as if, even if you mess up, it wouldn’t affect you so much,” he said.

Compean said what they would say to a student feeling ashamed about attending community college.

“Just because this is where we start doesn’t make us any less. Run your race in your own time,” she said.

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