What Classes Can I Take to Get Ready for College?
Early College is a great opportunity to begin the college experience. There are many benefits that early college provides for high school students.
- Earn high school and college credit at the same time. MCC credits earned can be applied to an associate’s degree and can be transferred to Arizona four-year universities and more than 40 other university partners nationwide.
- Increased rates of graduation. Studies have shown that students who participate in MCC classes are significantly more likely to graduate from high school.
- Advanced preparation for college. By attending college level courses while in high school, you have the opportunity to learn college processes with the support and assistance of your high school.
- Mental focus on being college bound. MCC turns attending college from a dream into a reality, helping you feel capable, confident and focused on following through with the remainder of your degree.
- Financial savings. Graduating high school with up to two years of college credits means that you can finish college in about half the time. With 75% lower Maricopa County resident tuition rates than state universities, MCC makes college affordable.
|Early College Programs||When to Apply||Cost||GPA Required||Special Requirements/Information|
|Achieving a College Education (ACE)||Sophomore with at least 6 high school credits||Free||2.0||Must meet 2 or more criteria: first generation college student, live in a single-parent home, member of an underrepresented group in higher education, working 10 to 30 hours per week to support your family, experiencing other environmental risk factors (examples: teen parent, living in foster care or temporary housing, etc.).|
|Hoop of Learning||Fall of 9th, 10th or 11th grade||Free||2.0||Must be a registered member of a state or federally recognized tribal nation, a 2.0 minimum high school GPA, actively enrolled in high school and on track to graduate on time.|
|Dual Enrollment||9th, 10th, 11th or 12th grade||Tuition and Fees||Varies||Course admission and prerequisites apply. Eligible high school classes are often honors or AP. Assistance may be available to cover the cost of tuition. Students may apply for the Maricopa Grant to cover tuition costs, including those whose families qualify for Free and Reduced Lunch, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS).|
|Concurrent Enrollment||9th, 10th, 11th or 12th grade||Tuition and Fees||Varies||Course admission and prerequisites apply. Assistance may be available to cover the cost of tuition. Students may apply for the Maricopa Grant to cover tuition costs, including those whose families qualify for Free and Reduced Lunch, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS).|
We get it! College is a great investment in your future, but figuring out how to pay can be overwhelming. There are a number of options available to help make it more affordable. The options below are open to all students.
Financial Aid Basics
Financial aid is money that is given to you to help pay for college and is based on your financial need. There are many forms of financial aid, some of which you pay back and others you don't.
Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
Completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid is often required to assess your eligibility for a variety of college funds. The FAFSA opens on October 1 each year for the following academic year. Some funds are limited and distributed on a first come, first served basis. The earlier you apply, the more options will be available to you. Learn how to apply.
Work Study may be part of your financial aid package through FAFSA. Eligible students can work on campus part-time up to 20 hours per week while attending school. View open Work Study positions.
Student loans are a common way to pay for college. The amount you borrow has to be paid back plus interest and can take up to six weeks to process using the FAFSA form. Loans can help cover the cost of tuition and other expenses. Learn more about student loans.
Grants provide financial aid that does not need to be repaid (certain circumstances may require repayment). The Federal Pell Grant is determined through your FAFSA application. In addition to Pell, many grants are offered by the state of Arizona, as well as by individual colleges. Learn more about grants.
Scholarships help cover the cost of tuition and other expenses. Scholarships are not just for straight-A students or recent graduates. There are scholarships for new high school graduates, longtime workers, Hispanic students, Native Americans, women, welders, STEM majors and more! Everyone is encouraged to apply. The Maricopa County Community College District (MCCCD) offers two kinds of scholarships, those funded through the District and those funded through the Maricopa Community Colleges Foundation. Two scholarship cycles run in March and September of each year. No FAFSA required; all GPAs welcome. View scholarship opportunities.
Did You Know?
Arizona Proposition 308 allows qualifying non-citizen Arizona high school graduates to receive in-state tuition at Arizona's community colleges. Learn more.
Options to Pay for College
|Paying for College Upon High School Graduation||When to Apply||Cost||GPA Required||Special Requirements/Information|
|Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)||12th grade||Free||Any||The FAFSA opens October 1 each year for the following academic year.|
|Mesa College Promise||12th grade, spring semester||Free||2.0||Must be a recent high school graduate or GED recipient, reside in Mesa, AZ, and demonstrate financial need by completing the FAFSA. Program participants must enroll at MCC the semester after high school graduation as full-time, degree or certificate seeking students.|
|President's Honors Scholarship||Fall or Spring semester following high school graduation||Free||Unweighted GPA of 3.25 or higher||Must enroll at MCC or another MCCCD college within the Fall or Spring semester immediately following graduation from a Maricopa County high school, without having attended another accredited college or university (Dual Enrollment, Concurrent Enrollment and summer session excluded). Must be able to show legal presence in the United States and be a Maricopa County resident.|
|Maricopa Community Colleges Scholarships||Deadline is March and September each year||Free||Varies||One application reviews your eligibility for a variety of scholarships.|
|Other Scholarships||Varies||Free||Varies||There are many other scholarships offered through public and private resources. A couple of strategies are to watch your high school announcements or search "scholarships" on the MCC website.|
At Mesa Community College, we never want education costs to get in the way of pursuing your education and career. Upon high school graduation, you may be eligible to attend MCC with the cost of your tuition fully covered. Planning early and staying on top of your high school grade point average opens more opportunities for you.
Mesa College Promise
Through a partnership with the City of Mesa, the Mesa College Promise is available to recent high school graduates and GED recipients who reside in the City of Mesa. The program covers the full in-state tuition cost to attend MCC full-time through a combination of FAFSA funding and scholarship resources. This scholarship does not need to be paid back and is available for up to two consecutive years. You must have a 2.0 or higher cumulative high school GPA and meet other eligibility requirements.
President's Honors Scholarship
The President's Honors Scholarship is available to recent Maricopa County high school graduates with a minimum of 3.25 unweighted GPA. It provides funds covering in-county tuition up to 15 credit hours plus registration fees for two consecutive years. This scholarship does not need to be paid back. You are NOT required to take honors or Advanced Placement (AP) classes in high school to be eligible for the President's Honors Scholarship.
Early College Programs
Southern and Dobson Campus
Building GC 54-B