For the second year Capital Community College is one of the top 25 two-year institutions in the nation for adult learners, according the Washington Monthly 2018 Rankings of Colleges and Universities.
Capital ranked 21st among two-year schools for students 25 years old and older based on government education data and factors such as ease of transfer, the percentage of students over 25 and earnings after college.
Capital, one of 12 community colleges in Connecticut, offers associate degree and certificate programs, including nationally accredited programs in nursing, radiologic technology, medical assisting and early childhood education. Guided pathways programs provide automatic transfer into state universities and articulation agreements with private institutions offer similar opportunities to move to the baccalaureate. Seventy-nine (79) percent of students attend part-time (2017) and the average age of students is 29.
One of the most ethnically diverse institutions in New England, Hispanic and African-American students made up 65% of enrollment in the fall of 2017. Capital was the first college in Connecticut to be designated an Hispanic Serving Institution by the federal government.
The Washington Monthly in 2016 became the first publication to rank colleges “according to how well they cater to adults learners” and included community colleges in the higher education ratings. The survey for older students assesses both 2-year and 4-year institutions on how they score on “openness and responsiveness to adult students and of how well those students fare once they leave.” In 2017 Capital also ranked in the top 25, placing 10th in the survey of all two-year public and private colleges.
The rankings are based on seven factors including ease of transfer, flexibility of programs, services for adult students, the percentage of students over 25, the graduation rate of part-time students, mean earnings 10 years after college entry, loan repayment rates and tuition and fees. To attain the ranking Capital Community College data showed 54% of students over 25, a 24% graduation within eight years of entry, earnings of $39,468 for graduates with 10 years on the job and loan repayment rates of 61% after graduation.
“When you take these needs into account, the rankings of which schools are “best” starts to look very different from what you find in U.S. News & World Report and other magazines,” wrote Gilad Edelman in Washington Monthly.