Catawba Valley Community College
Hickory, NC, USA


Catawba Valley Community College
2.71 Average Rating

Jonathan from Cornelius, NC

a current student here
1 person found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
CVCC is a very rigorous public (state) community college with a multitude of program offerings, from AA and AS degrees for general education and transferring, to a variety of Applied Science degrees. Unlike many of the community colleges in the Southeast U.S. region, CVCC grades on a 7 point scale rather than a 10 point scale. Also, unlike many of the areas community colleges, including one of North Carolina's largest (Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte), CVCC offers financial aid options that include Federal Loans.
Tips for prospective students
If you are looking for a rigorous, yet rewarding and affordable community college, CVCC should be at the top of your list. Make sure you take advantage of every resource available to new and prospective students. CVCC offers a Peer Mentoring program for first and second semester students. The Peer Mentoring program is exceptional, and is for the sole purpose of orienting a new or returning student to the vast resources available to them, as well as provide a friend and mentor to help guide you. The program consists of weekly sessions with your mentor, modules that cover time management skills as it relates to student success, critical thinking, study methodologies and test prep, as well as stress management and staying healthy. CVCC also offers career development resources that any student or former student should utilize fully. A few other tips: get ahead, and stay ahead... with your studies, housekeeping, planning, etc. Take personal responsibility to see things through---from registration, to assignments and study, to following up on your schedule, financial aid, etc. There is plenty of help available, but you need to take control of your education and your future! Get involved in a club or organization, and volunteer, run for office, chair a planning committee, etc. I highly recommend joining the honor society if you are invited (3.5 GPA or above for 2 semesters). There are scholarships that are automatic for Phi Theta Kappa members, as well as personal development programs, internet resources ( for researching and applying to senior colleges and universities, financial aid, personal development courses, etc.
Academic Rigor
As I've already mentioned twice (can I emphasize this enough?), CVCC is very rigorous for a community college. They are not playing around! Sure, there are some instructors that are more rigorous than others, but overall you will have a difficult time finding a more rigorous commmunity college in our area. Don't go to this school if you're lazy!
Dorm Life
No dorms... yet! There was a survey of students this month regarding living arrangements. So, they are obvoiusly looking at whether there is a need or not.
Food and Dining
The Galley. A bit expensive. But, so is Starbuck's, huh? The Galley is in the new student center, which is a very cool place to kick it.
What to do for fun
If you're into sports, CVCC has a very competitive athletic program. The ladies volleyball team is rated among some of the top teams, nationally. There is also basketball, baseball, soccer, and I even think they are looking toward a possible football team. There is always something going on in the arts, either on campus, or sponsored by the school in the Hickory area. We have festivals of many sorts. The school is very diverse culturally, and ethnically. Hickory has a large Mongue population, so there are lots of beautiful students which are part of this group. There are 20 or so clubs and organizations, most are very, very active. The Hickory area is teaming with things to do. There are good restaurants, shopping, parks, art exhibits, museums (the Salt Block, for example), a Barnes and Noble across the street with a cafe that serves Starbucks coffee. Hickory Crawdad's minor league baseball team is also a fav. Students get discounted (all the time) or free tickets (on Thursday) for their games, as well as other discounts throughout Hickory, and also Carowinds in Charlotte. There are several YMCA locations, one close to the school, and membership is included in your tuition if you take 7 or more credit hours.
Bang for the buck
VERY affordable as CVCC is part of North Carolina's higher education school and university system. Books are still outrageous though; plan ahead and buy used and online!
Great for these types of students
Students who want a challenge and REALLY want to learn. Returning adult students are about 1/4 of the school population. Students persueing allied healthcare---CVCC has the largest simulated hospital in the Southeast (among technical & community colleges). IT students: a very active technology program. Entrepreneurs: CVCC has an Applied Science degree in entrepreneurship as well as a full set of continuing education classes for small business. They even have a free program for local business owners and would-be business owners.
Clubs and Activities
Check out the website at
Greek Life
Beta Eta Delta chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (Honor Society).
Campus Safety
EXCELLENT! Top notch security. County Sherrif's office are stationed on campus!
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