People often have a negative perception of the nearby community college, COM. There are many who believe four-year universities or other alternatives are superior, but that’s not the case. People think that, just because it’s not the most “prestigious” option, it is the worst option, or possibly a last resort. To quell any false perceptions, I interviewed two seniors, Melissa Reed and Salomi Galodamu, about their decision to go to College of Marin instead of a four year college.
Why are you deciding to go to College of Marin?
Melissa: “For me, I didn’t look at any other options. My sister had gone to UC Santa Cruz and she thought she knew what she wanted to do, but then after a year of floundering she came back and she used COM as a means of exploring her interests… and I saw how she dealt with that, and thought that would be a better route for me. I have no idea what I want to do in my life whatsoever.”
Salomi: “COM is the best way to save money […]. Going to a four year college is great if you know what you’re doing, or have an idea of what you want to do. I feel like COM is a place where I feel like I would fit in more…The age variety will be different, and I like that”
Melissa: “I get along better with older people.”
How are the academic options at COM?
Salomi: “It’s college and you still get the same credits. I am there to get my pre-requisites done.”
Melissa: “There is a lot of a variety of classes, and they have many behavioral science classes that I am excited about. It’ll be great to take classes that I am actually interested in for the first time in my life.”
How do people react when people find out you are going to College of Marin?
Melissa: “When people learn that I am going to be going to COM, they are surprised, and they try to compensate for it. They’ll say ‘Oh, you’re probably doing it to save money’ or ‘that must have been your second choice’. It feels like they’re trying to come up with good reasons to go to COM. For me, I’m trying to treat it as my own personal step in my journey… There is some judgement and disappointment [about my decision to go to COM], and my family is kind of hard on each other and me about it.”
Salomi: “My mom was disappointed at first… I’m first generation, so they really wanted me to get into a state school… But it’s not what I want to do.”
Do you have any advice for incoming College of Marin students?
Salomi: “If any juniors out there are considering COM, it’s not a bad idea. Don’t get discouraged when people [don’t support you], so if you feel like you want to go, do it. “
Melissa: “Do it for yourself – no one else.”