Mondoville is a 4-year institution, but I think this comment via Ilkka at The Fourth Checkraise remains applicable:
[T]he real difference between a prestigious university and a community college these days that in the former, you are in a corral of 300 kids who have no choice, taught by a famous researcher prof who barely speaks English and doesn’t particularly like teaching, whereas in a community college you get to learn all the same stuff in a class of 30 adults who want to be there, taught by somebody who speaks proper English.
This is certainly close to a description of my experience at Berkeley and Sonoma State. However, in my time at Berkeley I had more, and more intellectually exciting, late-night bull sessions with my fellow students. Also, the grading was more demanding, which made me up my game.
I agree completely. I am currently enrolled in a community college as a science major and I am looking forward to taking Organic Chemistry with less than 30 fellow students and an instructor who makes eye contact with me as he teaches.
Since my goal is not to eventually get a B.S. and perhaps go further but to do so with as little debt as possible, the community college is key.