2021 Best Community Colleges in Utah

Learn more about the best community colleges in Utah and find out why Utah is a good place to live and study.

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Published on December 23, 2021

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Community colleges in Utah provide students with an alternative pathway to entry-level jobs in their desired field. Enrolling in a community college is typically more affordable than enrolling at a four-year college or university. These schools also offer a diverse array of programs, including two-year associate degree programs, career-oriented certificates, and short-term training programs.

Community colleges in Utah provide a direct college-to-workforce pipeline that focuses on skills development rather than the textbook knowledge that most four-year universities offer. There are 13 community colleges in Utah, with average annual tuition costs of $4,540 for in-state residents and an average of $13,650 for out-of-state students.

Why Study in Utah?

Educational Opportunities

Community colleges in Utah offer associate degree programs and certifications in high-demand industries like automotive technology, business and management, construction, cybersecurity, culinary arts, education, and healthcare.

Moreover, community colleges provide short-term training courses in emerging fields like applied technology, social media marketing, and web development. Most community college courses award credits that can transfer to four-year universities and colleges, which offers a more affordable path toward earning a bachelor's degree.

Economy

According to U.S. News & World Report, Utah is the top state in the country in terms of economic growth and outlook. Utah boasts a job growth rate of 2.5%, which eclipses the national average of 1.4%. Furthermore, according to Forbes, Utah's GDP has grown by about 19% in the past five years, the second-highest growth rate among all states during that period.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Utah is generally more expensive than the national average, although people still flock to the state because of its booming economy. Housing and healthcare expenses are both higher than the U.S. average, but other living costs in Utah are more affordable than in most states.

Along with Utah's high-ranking economic outlook, costs for groceries, transportation, and utilities all rank below the national average.

Cultural and Community Offerings

Utah's diverse tourism industry boasts many natural and cultural assets. Utah is known for its excellent ski resorts, most of them within an hour's drive from the Salt Lake City International Airport. Moreover, Utah houses 43 state parks, five national parks, and two national recreation areas. Utah also hosts the Sundance Film Festival, Moab Music Festival, and Utah Arts Festival.

Climate

Utah experiences four different seasons, characterized by hot and dry summers and short but frigid winters. Utah does not get much rain. However, Utah receives more snowfall than most states. The state's capital, Salt Lake City, receives an average of 54 inches of snow per year. The best months for outdoor activities in Utah are May, June, and September.

Top Degree Programs in Utah

Best Online Associate in Psychology Programs Best Online Associate in Computer Science Programs Best Online Associate in Education Programs Best Online Associate in Human Resources Programs Best Online Associate in Web Development Programs Best Online Associate in Marketing Programs

Featured Online Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

Utah Employment Outlook

As of August 2021, the unemployment rate in Utah has fallen to only 2.6%, well below the national average of 5.9%. Utah's current employment has grown to 1,614,800. Leading industries in the state include professional and business services; trade, transportation and utilities; construction; and manufacturing.

5 Utah Jobs in High Demand for 2021


Computer and Information Technology Occupations

The computer and information technology industry boasts a projected job growth rate of 13%, which is much faster than the average projected growth rate for all occupations (8%). A relevant two-year associate degree allows graduates to pursue entry-level positions in database administration, information security, information research, computer support, web development, and digital design.


Business and Financial Occupations

Associate programs in business and finance provide students with the qualifications to apply for support roles in the in-demand areas of accounting and auditing, budget analysis, financial analysis and examination, and human resources. They can also pursue roles in fields like insurance, labor relations, management, market research, and real estate.


Healthcare Support Occupations

Associate-degree holders in healthcare fields qualify for assisting and supporting roles in areas like athletic training, audiology, clinical laboratory technology, and dentistry. They can also find work as emergency medical technicians, home healthcare aides, and occupational therapy assistants.


Construction and Extraction Occupations

As the demand for new infrastructure grows across the country, the number of jobs in the construction and extraction industry should also grow. An associate degree can lead to careers in carpentry, construction and building inspection, construction equipment operation, flooring installation, painting, and maintenance.


Life, Physical, and Social Science Occupations

An associate degree in the sciences allows graduates to pursue diverse careers like agricultural and food science technician, chemical technician, environmental scientists and specialist, and nuclear technician. Graduates can also apply for entry-level jobs in atmospheric science, biological technology, conservation science, forestry, microbiology, and zoology.


Popular Career Paths in Utah

Political Science Business Administration Healthcare Administration Web Development Finance Marketing Software Engineering Nursing

2021 Best Accredited Community Colleges in Utah

Rankings compiled by the BestColleges Ranking Team

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Best Community Colleges in Utah

  1. Mountainland Technical College
    Location

    Lehi, UT

    Tuition

    $470

    MTECH features excellent academic programs and professors with years of industry experience. The perfect choice for prospective students researching certificates, this community college in Utah features programs in 10 fields, including apprenticeship, automotive technology, and emergency healthcare.

    Programs at MTECH emphasize classroom learning and hands-on experiences with members of the community. For instance, cosmetology students offer hair and skincare services at Mountainland Salon at costs lower than what private salons charge. MTECH also engages with the local business community through the Custom Fit program; professors and company managers develop and implement professional development courses for employees.

    All incoming learners take an entrance assessment and meet with an academic advisor. Active-duty military personnel and veterans can also receive credit for military training. High school students in a dual-enrollment program do not pay tuition. Additionally, degree-seekers create a scholarship account to research and apply for financial aid opportunities.

  2. Davis Technical College
    Location

    Kaysville, UT

    Tuition

    $525

    Students at Davis Tech can select from more than two dozen certificate programs in six fields: business and technology, construction, health, manufacturing, service, and transportation. Programs require 3-48 months, and longer programs require one or more apprenticeships. This community college in Utah helps prospective learners select a program by displaying the latest Utah salary information for graduates working in the field.

    Besides certificate programs, Davis Tech offers several community enrichment services, including continuing education in over a dozen fields and customized training programs for local businesses. The college also provides many valuable services to students, such as affordable daycare and a job placement center.

    Davis Tech both accepts GED certificates and readies learners for the exam by offering a prep course. Incoming students complete four application steps that include taking a tour, meeting with a counselor, and applying for financial aid. Certificate-seekers can apply for both need-based grants and merit-based scholarships by submitting only one application.

  3. Bridgerland Technical College
    Location

    Logan, UT

    Tuition

    $8837

    Students at Bridgerland can select from more than 30 certificate programs that align with in-demand careers including cybersecurity, culinary arts, and welding technology. Many programs require at least 600 hours of hands-on experience, in addition to classroom learning. Approximately 90% of graduates obtain employment within one year of graduation.

    Bridgerland actively supports learners' success by inviting business leaders to host job fairs on campus and recruit recent graduates. Other valuable student services include a learning center where they can hone their writing and math skills. Certificate-seekers nearing graduation can visit the Department of Workforce Services to explore career opportunities in the local area.

    Prospective students can apply to the Logan or Brigham City campus. Tuition varies by program, and certificate-seekers submit a general scholarship application to apply for 13 financial aid opportunities. This Utah community college also provides an extensive list of private scholarship opportunities for learners.

  4. Latter-day Saints Business College
    Location

    Salt Lake City, UT

    Tuition

    $8481

    Students at LDSBC can select a degree or certificate that blends business best practices and Mormon teachings. Degree-seekers planning to enter a bachelor's degree completion program can earn a transferable AA. This private community college in Utah also delivers four AAS programs in areas such as applied technology and cybersecurity. Additionally, certificate-seekers have 21 options, including social media marketing and project management.

    Outside of class, learners can access academic advising, counseling, success mentoring, and tutoring services through the Student Development Center. Tutoring does not require a fee, and students can receive help in any subject by making an appointment. LDSBC's Career Services Center works closely with local employers to match recent graduates with their dream career.

    LDSBC does not accept GED diplomas. Full-time students at this Utah community college pay a flat tuition rate. Incoming degree- and certificate-seekers may qualify for one of more than a dozen scholarship opportunities. Each scholarship uses a different deadline and application requirements.

  5. Salt Lake Community College
    Location

    Salt Lake City, UT

    Tuition

    $7120

    SLCC offers seven types of certificates and degrees, making this Utah community college an excellent option for learners undecided on a major or career path. Transfer degrees require approximately 60 credits, while certificates range from 16 to 30 credits. Many students at SLCC earn a degree and certificate simultaneously to hone additional in-demand skills.

    SLCC participates in the Federal TRIO Program to provide first-generation and economically disadvantaged students with additional student services. However, all degree- and certificate-seekers can access the Student Writing and Reading Center, E-portfolio Lab, and Presentation Skills Lab. Students who use SLCC's tutoring resources and improve their grades receive a gift card.

    Prospective students should have either a high school diploma or acceptable GED scores. Learners at SLCC pay the lowest tuition rate of any in-state public school. Financial aid opportunities at this Utah community college include the Presidential Scholarship, which awards full tuition and a textbook stipend. Application requirements include full-time status, a minimum 3.0 GPA, and working at least 10 hours per week on campus.

Frequently Asked Questions About Community Colleges in Utah

Are community colleges worth it? true

Enrolling in a community college is a viable option for students who find it challenging to meet the more expensive tuition and fees at four-year schools. Along with reduced costs, community colleges also offer students a quicker path to joining the workforce.

Most community colleges now offer fully online classes, which presents a flexible learning setup for working students and returning adults. Community colleges also award credits that transfer to four-year schools, which can help students save money on bachelor's degrees.

Does Utah have good community colleges? true

Community colleges in Utah serve nearly 120,000 students every year, providing quality and affordable postsecondary education at more than 16 different locations across the state. The best community colleges in Utah offer associate degree programs, certificates, and short-term training courses in high-demand fields.

Utah's community colleges also provide financial assistance grants to students to further promote an affordable college-to-workforce route.

How much does it cost to go to community college in Utah? true

Utah community colleges charge an average annual tuition of $4,540 for in-state students and $13,650 for out-of-state learners.

Utah students can also apply for financial aid programs to help reduce tuition costs. For example, Salt Lake Community College created the SLCC Promise, a free tuition program. Applicants must complete the FAFSA and attend a meeting with an advisor to apply.

What is the cheapest community college in Utah?

Snow College is among the least expensive community colleges in Utah, charging an annual tuition rate of $1,810 for in-state learners.

Founded in 1888, Snow College now operates two campuses located in Ephraim and Richfield. The college serves more than 5,000 students every year and offers associate and certificate programs in fields like accounting, agricultural business, art, and software engineering.

Is Utah a good place to live and study?

With a high-ranking economic outlook and a relatively affordable cost of living, Utah is an excellent place to live and study. Students might find housing costs more expensive than other states, but additional living costs like groceries, utilities, and transportation all fall below the national average.

Furthermore, according to U.S. News & World Report, Utah boasts the strongest economy in the nation. Most importantly, community colleges in Utah offer an affordable and convenient pathway for students to immediately transition into the workforce.

Featured Image: DenisTangneyJr / E+ / Getty Images

A complete guide to trade schools and why they could be a great and cheap alternative to college. Learn how you can build skills quickly in this post. Many community college students plan to transfer to a four-year college, but few succeed. Closing the transfer gap is critical to closing opportunity gaps. Many believe community college is less academically rigorous, but attending a two-year institution can benefit you both intellectually and financially.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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