Our Neighbors – Community College of Aurora


Affordability Right in Your Backyard

One of the advantages to living in Central Park is the community’s proximity to just about everything in the Denver metro area.

Denver Museum of Nature and Science? Check.

Denver Zoo? Check.

Downtown Denver? Double check.

But many might not know that the ability to get a high-quality, affordable post-secondary education is also right in their backyard. No need to pay for out-of-state tuition. No need for room and board. And, best of all, no need to relocate to start on the path to a degree.

Central Park has a jewel just like that in the Community College of Aurora (CCA). CCA shares a boundary with Central Park to the east at the CentreTech campus in Aurora and is only four miles south down Quebec Street to CCA’s Lowry campus.

Either way, CCA is your local higher-education neighbor!

CCA offers programs for a wide swath of Central Park residents. From recent high school graduates, to adults continuing their post-secondary education pursuits, to working professionals looking to gain new skills for a current job or a new career, there’s something for everyone at CCA.

There are short-term career and technical education programs and certificates for those who want to quickly get into the workforce. And there are associate degrees that provide students with the hands-on skills to enter the workforce without any further education, or degrees that are designed to transfer to a four-year institution in the pursuit of a bachelor’s or higher degree.

Families and students can also feel confident that utilizing a gap year to stay home, saving money, or returning to school on their own terms is a viable and smart choice. In fact, with all that’s going on with COVID-19, this may be the best time to consider CCA

CCA is also committed to serving local high schools via concurrent enrollment. Their staff continues to work with local high schools in the area to help students earn college credits while they’re still in high school. In fact, more than 60 high school students who are taking concurrent enrollment classes through CCA will graduate this year with a high school diploma and a college degree.

“Today’s student population is so diverse – our delivery methods are designed to meet the varying demands – from high schoolers to adults returning to school,” says John Wolfkill, Executive Director of the CCA Foundation and a Central Park resident.

“From our small class sizes to providing $800,000 in student scholarships each year, students come to CCA not just because it is accessible, but because it is a place they feel valued and know their professors are committed to their success.”

From robotics, to engineering, to the Integrated Nursing Pathways partnership with the College of Nursing at CU Anschutz and the acclaimed Colorado Film School, CCA offers inroads to a variety of high-paying careers on a timeline that suits each individual.

A student could even start their educational journey at CCA and make the leap to a four-year institution, particularly in nursing or another medical field.

Just ask Northfield High School student Yael Venegas.

A senior at Central Park’s Northfield High School, Venegas will graduate from CCA this May with his high school diploma and an associate degree, with hopes of attending CU Boulder, and then on to medical school to study neurology.

“I knew I wanted to go into medicine,” Venegas says, “so when my relatives told me about CCA’s concurrent enrollment program, I checked into it. Finding out that I could get a real college experience and credits while still in high school sold me right away. And it was a hop, skip and jump from my high school. I said, ‘wow, sign me up!’”

CCA is also perfect for those who live in Central Park.

Brian Steward, Director of CCA’s Colorado Film School (a top 30 film school in the country), is a perfect example.

“As the father of a third-grader and Director of the Colorado Film School, we moved to Central Park because it hits a real sweet spot for us,” he says. “Great schools, proximity to light rail, and a short hop over to the CCA campus. Central Park checks a lot of boxes for us as a family.”

So, for those who love a great find, CCA is like discovering a hidden treasure in your backyard, without the price tag of Ivy League, but every bit as valuable.

For more information, visit ccaurora.edu or call 303-360-4700.

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