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College Preparation

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Your College Options

The California State University (CSU) is the nation's largest university system. The oldest campus is San Jose State, founded in 1857. The newest campuses are California Maritime Academy and CSU Monterey Bay. The CSU produces 50 percent more business graduates and more computer scientists and engineers than all other California universities and colleges combined, and prepares two-thirds of the California's public school teachers educated in California. CSU has 22 campuses offering bachelor's and master's degrees and teaching credentials. CSU admits the top one-third of all California high school graduating seniors each year. The closest CSU campuses to Long Beach include CSU Long Beach, CSU Dominguez Hills (in the city of Carson), CSU Fullerton, CSU Los Angeles, Cal Poly Pomona and CSU Channel Islands.

The University of California (UC) offers nine campuses which focus on teaching and research. The UC offers the same degrees as the CSU campuses, plus doctorate programs to become a dentist (D.D.S.), a physician (M.D.), or other professional in a specific field (Ph.D.). The UC admits the top 12.5 percent of all California graduating high school students. At a UC campus, you can study to become an engineer, chemist, architect, teacher, doctor, lawyer, dentist, social worker, and much more. The UC campuses near Long Beach include University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) , University of California, Irvine (UCI) , and University of California, Riverside (UCR).

The Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities (AICCU) (external link) is a system consisting of 76 colleges and universities located throughout the State of California. These colleges and universities do not receive state funds as do the public college systems. The amount of fees and tuition charged depends on the college but usually these colleges are more expensive than publicly funded schools. However, there is financial aid available, and the AICCU states that it is possible to save money in the long run since it is often possible to complete your education in four years rather than in five of six years, which can be the case in another college system. Some of the independent colleges and universities located near Long Beach include the University of Southern California (USC) (external link), Marymount College (external link) in Palos Verdes, Whittier College (external link) , Loyola Marymount University (external link) in Los Angeles, DeVry Institute (external link) in Long Beach and Occidental College (external link) in Eagle Rock.

The California Community Colleges (CCC) has 108 community college campuses. To attend, you must be 18 years old or have a high school diploma. There are vocational and technical programs that prepare you for careers as an electrician, nurse, auto mechanic, secretary, computer technician and more. In these programs, it normally takes two years to earn a Certificate of Completion or Associate of Arts degree. You can also complete your first two years of college coursework and transfer to a four-year university to complete your remaining two years of college for a bachelor's degree. Nearby community college campuses include Cypress, Cerritos, Compton, Golden West, Long Beach and Orange Coast.

Trade School presents another option for continuing your education in California. Trade schools can cost more, but their programs usually take less time to complete. You can go to trade schools to learn job skills such as plumbing, carpentry, medical assistance, etc. ITT Technical Institute (external link) is an example of a trade school.

Long Beach Unified School District • 1515 Hughes Way, Long Beach CA 90810 • (562) 997-8000 • www.lbschools.net