Georgia State University-Perimeter College (Atlanta)
As a member of the Georgia State University System, Perimeter College is the only institution in our top ten that isn't a member of the Technical College System of Georgia. It's also the largest two-year school in the state, educating more than 18,000 students each semester.
Its direct association with the GSU system means that Perimeter College can provide students with an uncomplicated path from community college to a university program. The rate of students successfully finishing their bachelor's degrees after transferring into university programs was higher here than at any other school among the best community colleges in Georgia.
Available degree programs here include Associate of Arts (A.A.) plans in engineering and film and media studies. Students in the health sciences have a range of pathways to choose from, including health information administration and respiratory therapy.
Savannah Technical College (Savannah)
Around 3,800 students attended classes at Savannah Technical College in 2018, giving it the comfortable feel of a mid-sized school. Just one other school in our top ten reported a lower in-state tuition cost than STC in 2018, making it a solid choice for students looking to save some money on their education.
Numerous career and technical education programs are on offer here. Subjects such as welding and electrical construction and maintenance are taught alongside medical specialties like phlebotomy and dental hygiene.
STC operates four civilian campus locations and the Fort Stewart Army Education Center. Two of those civilian locations, the Savannah Campus and the Crossroads campus, are located in its namesake seaside city of Savannah. The others can be found in nearby Hinesville and Rincon.
Georgia Piedmont Technical College (Clarkston)
Georgia Piedmont Technical College is another one of our top community colleges in Georgia that aims to help student transfers go as smoothly as possible. The Clarkston school has nearly 30 transfer agreements in place with universities in Georgia and elsewhere, including Robert Gordon University in Scotland.
Around 40 different technical degree and certificate programs can be earned through the five academic departments at GPTC. Subjects of study for diploma or certificate seekers include commercial refrigeration, recording arts technology, computer engineering technology and an 8-week commercial truck driving program.
The city of Clarkston has a population of less than 13,000 residents, according to the U.S. Census, but it's on the edge of the Atlanta metropolitan area. Students can stay in town to study in peace or head into the city for recreation, shopping and nightlife.
Chattahoochee Technical College (Marietta)
No fewer than eight campus locations of Chattahoochee Technical College are working to serve students in its six-county service area. The main campus and Mountain View satellite in Marietta are joined by outposts in Canton, Jasper, Woodstock, Austell, Dallas and Acworth.
Flexibility is an important part of the mission here. Many courses are taught partially or fully online and a range of evening and weekend classes are available to accommodate the schedules of students with work or family responsibilities during normal school hours. CTC also offers several fully online degrees, in subjects like business management and criminal justice technology.
Campus-based degree programs here ruin the gamut, from high-tech fields like networking and Web application development to trades work like carpentry and precision manufacturing. Health sciences programs are prominent as well, with nearly 20 disciplines to choose from.
Southern Crescent Technical College (Griffin)
The mission of Southern Crescent Technical College is to deliver relevant technical education to students of all kinds, whether fresh out of high school or returning to college after spending years in the workforce. Adult students at SCTC can take advantage of the Tender Tech Child Development Center, which offers on-campus day care for children from six weeks to 12 years old.
More than 30 allied health programs are offered at this Griffin institution, including an Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree in health care management and both a degree and diploma plan in surgical technology. The full range of programs available here numbers in the 200s and also includes training in business technology, computer information systems and film and television production.
Atlanta Technical College (Atlanta)
Total enrollment at Atlanta Technical College was around 5,000 students in 2019, with part-time learners making up close to two-thirds of the student body. Financial aid awards are very common among the student body here — 94 percent of students were awarded some type of student aid package in 2018.
More than 150 degree, diploma and certificate programs are available for students at ATC. Aspiring crime scene investigators can earn a technical certificate in forensics, and automotive technology students can study individual sets of vehicle systems in two-semester technical certificate programs or get a comprehensive diploma.
ATC also provides degrees and certificates that can be earned entirely through online courses or other flexible means. Programs in business management, cosmetology, air conditioning technology and more are available entirely through evening courses.
Gwinnett Technical College (Lawrenceville)
More than 140 programs of study are offered at Gwinnett Technical College, where the numbers show that students tend to get results. The graduation rate here was one of the best in the state, and just two other schools on our list reported a higher percentage of first-year students returning to complete their degree or diploma plans as sophomores.
The data also show that students fresh out of high school tend to make use of affordable GTC courses on their way to a career or bachelor's degree. More than 31 percent of the 2018 student body here was 20 years old or younger.
Programs here include an A.A.S, certificate or diploma in game development and a manufacturer-approved automotive technology degree for Mercedes-Benz vehicles.
Albany Technical College (Albany)
Albany Technical College has a history that stretches back to 1961, when 175 students enrolled in Monroe Area Vocational-Technical School. The current main campus was established around 10 years later and it became a comprehensive two-year institution before the year 2000.
This southwestern Georgia school had the highest rate of distance education enrollment among two-year schools in the state, with more than two-thirds of students taking at least some of their credits in the virtual classroom. More than 30 degree, diploma and certificate plans are available entirely online.
Education in logistics and industrial operations is available here, through such programs as a degree in operations management and a degree or diploma in business logistics. The operations management degree can be earned either online or on campus.
Central Georgia Technical College (Warner Robins)
A low ratio of students to faculty members at a two-year school indicates that professors are likely to be available for extra help outside of class hours, which can be a big help to students returning to college after spending some time away from school. The student-faculty ratio at Central Georgia Technical College was 14:1 in 2018, topping our list in that category.
Healthcare training programs at CGTC include a degree or certificate in biotechnology, an orthopedic technology degree that's accredited by the National Board for Certification of Orthopedic Technologists (NBCOT) and a diploma program in polysomnography for students looking to contribute to the study of sleep disorders. A general studies associate degree plan is available for students who intend to transfer to a university after graduation.
Columbus Technical College (Columbus)
Columbus Technical College opened its doors to its first class of just 39 students in 1961, and it's grown in enrollment and stature in the nearly six decades since. Today, it educates around 3,300 learners each semester and has a job placement rate of close to 95 percent.
CTC offers a special opportunity for students in technical disciplines like air conditioning technology, welding and automotive collision repair. Students, faculty and the general public can schedule appointments with the institution's Live Work Services division for help with one-off jobs that enrolled students can handle.
Along with these trade and technical programs, CTC offers training in accounting, paralegal studies, child development and funeral service education, among other fields. Online degrees are available in business studies, technical studies, management and supervisory development and more.