Parkland College proudly educates students from all over Community College District 505, Illinois, the United States, and the world! But those who come to Parkland from outside our community college district need to be aware of a few things that can impact their college experience.
What is Community College District 505? And why does it matter?
People who live in District 505 pay taxes that help support Parkland College. Because students who come to Parkland from outside the district have not paid those taxes, the college charges them more for their classes. (More than twice as much for out-of-district students; more than three times as much for out-of-state or international students)
If you don’t live in or near one of the towns on this list, chances are you are an out-of-district student:
I've moved to Champaign-Urbana. Now I'm an in-district student, right?
Not necessarily. There are several other steps an out-of-district student must take before being considered in-district, including filling out a Change of Residence form, providing documentation that you have worked at least 35 hours a week for at least 30 days in the district, and having a driver's license and voter's registration with an in-district address. If you are under 21, an additional step is needed. Please speak with your advisor to obtain all of the requirements.
Can I live on campus?
As a community college, Parkland College does not have college-run dormitories. However, there are a couple of private dormitories at the University of Illinois that are open to Parkland students, plus dozens of apartment complexes geared toward college students in Champaign, Urbana, and Savoy. Our Office of Student Life has information on possible housing options.
A word of caution: Don't sign a lease before you have a schedule of classes in hand. If something prevents you from registering for your classes -- a delay in financial aid, low test scores, required classes with no seats left -- and you decide not to stay in Champaign/Urbana, breaking a lease is a very costly solution. Better to wait.
Another word of caution: When choosing housing, take into consideration your commuting time. This map will help.
Will I be able to use financial aid to cover my living expenses?
Federal and state financial aid will not fully cover your expenses (housing, books, etc.) as an out-of-district student. Determine what your remaining out-of-pocket costs will be before you enroll. If you have not yet applied for financial aid, please do so right away, at www.FAFSA.ed.gov.
Can I take my assessment tests when I come to campus for orientation (SOAR)?
Many new students have to take placement, or assessment, tests in reading, writing, and/or math. Please take these tests seriously and do your best on them, to avoid paying for below-college-level courses you don't need. These tests take time; in most cases you won't be able to complete assessments and orientation in the same day. You may be able to test closer to home; visit the Assessment Center's webpagefor details.
What are Care Calls?
The Center for Academic Success wants to make sure all students get off to a great start on their college career. One way we do that is by calling out-of-district students to answer questions about their unique needs. While we try to reach as many out-of-district students as we can, it sometimes isn't possible for us to call everyone. If you want to talk to someone who can answer your questions or if you are afraid you missed getting a Care Call, by all means, give US a call: 217-353-2005. We will be happy to help in any way we can.
I'm concerned that Champaign-Urbana is too big/too small/too overwhelming/too boring.
One of the great things about our small city is that many consider it just right! There is a lot to do in our Twin Cities, but because of our size and public transportation, it's not hard to get around. Our Student Life office has more information about the benefits of living in Champaign-Urbana.
If you have any other questions, please give us a call at 217-353-2005.