Top 10 community colleges in the US

7. North Central Kansas Technical College

North Central Kansas Technical College

Nationwide, only about 20 percent of students graduate from two-year institutions within three years of enrolling. At North Central Kansas Technical College in Beloit, Kan., 81 percent of full-time students leave campus with their credentials in that time frame, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

North Central Kansas only offers technical programs -- 24 between two campuses -- and students may be required to collaborate with those outside of their degree program. Every year, students from the school's various programs -- carpentry, bricklaying, residential electricity, telecommunications, electronics engineering technology, and plumbing, heating and air conditioning -- work together to build a house from the foundation up.

"It really has been a great culmination and a great collaboration between a lot of different programs," says North Central Kansas Tech President Eric Burks. Proceeds from selling the house help fund the school's career technical programs.

North Central Kansas' technology studies program also works in tandem with the local four-year institution Fort Hays State University and provides transferrable credits students can apply toward a two-year degree program at North Central Kansas Tech or toward a four-year degree at Fort Hays State. All North Central students, regardless of program of study, receive direct attention from their teachers thanks to the school's sweet 10-1 student-faculty ratio.


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