Why Go To College?

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Over the course of a lifetime… Students with a four-year degree earn $1 million dollars more than those with a high school diploma* Students with a two-year degree earn $400,000 more than those with a high school diploma*

A student receiving their diploma during the graduation ceremony

What are Your Plans after High School?

PennyCollege is affordable

For those who qualify based on income, federal Pell grants can pay for a part of or all of the student’s fees. Students who qualify for the Missouri A+ program may attend a public, two-year college in Missouri tuition free, including Missouri State-West Plains. 85 percent of degree-seeking students at Missouri State-West Plains receive some form of financial aid.

PennyCollege is achievable.

Students can start out part time or full time at an open-admission, two-year college. Classes at two-year colleges are smaller and are taught by dedicated faculty. One-on-one attention and a supportive learning environment characterize the atmosphere at these institutions. Missouri State-West Plains provides unlimited free tutoring and academic counseling for every student.

PennyCollege is appropriate

Every dollar and hour spent on education provides one of the best returns on investment possible. Alumni of two-year schools in the Ozarks include doctors, lawyers, ministers, pharmacists, nurses, teachers and business owners. Graduates of two-year schools can put their associate's degree to immediate use in the marketplace, or transfer to earn bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees.

PennyTransfer Program

The AA degree allows students to complete general education requirements for virtually any bachelor’s degree before transferring to a four-year college or university. Missouri State’s Missouri State Outreach program offers bachelor’s degrees in agriculture, business, elementary education, nursing and technology management at the West Plains Campus.

PennyCareer Programs

The AAS and AS degrees allow students to immediately enter the workforce after graduation Graduates of career programs could find employment in the careers listed below:#In south-central Missouri, the average annual salary for a computer support specialist was $25,032, and the average annual salary for computer programmer was $41,402. Police and sheriff’s patrol officers in Missouri earned an average annual salary of $35,891. Police and sheriff’s patrol officers in the south-central Missouri region earned an average salary of $22,476. Respiratory therapists in Missouri earned an average annual salary of $41,823. Registered nurses in Missouri earned an average annual salary of $50,645, with an entry-level salary of $37,600. Registered nurses in the south-central Missouri region earned an average salary of $48,391, with an entry-level salary of $35,102.

Start the admission and financial aid process,
talk to your high school counselor
or contact the Admissions Office toll free at 1-888-466-7897.

*Source: College Board: Education Pays 2004; #May 2005 data, Missouri Economic Research and Information Center Website