Why Running Start Is Bad

Running start is often promoted as a great option for high school students to get a head start on their college education. It allows them to take college courses while still in high school and earn college credits. However, after personally experiencing running start and hearing from other students, I have come to the realization that it may not be as beneficial as it is made out to be.

The Pressure to Choose Early

One of the biggest issues with running start is the pressure it places on students to make important decisions about their future at a young age. In high school, students are still exploring their interests and figuring out what they want to pursue in college and beyond. However, running start often requires students to choose a specific major or track of study when they enroll in college courses. This can lead to a lot of stress and anxiety, as students may not have a clear idea of what they want to do yet.

Limited High School Experience

Another drawback of running start is that it limits the traditional high school experience. By taking college courses, students miss out on the opportunity to participate in extracurricular activities, such as sports, clubs, and events that are an integral part of the high school experience. These activities not only provide a well-rounded education but also allow students to develop important social skills and make lifelong friends.

Difficulty Transitioning

Transitioning from high school to college can be challenging for any student. However, for those who have experienced running start, the transition can be even more difficult. Running start students often find themselves in classes with older, more experienced students who have already adapted to the college environment. This can make it harder for running start students to find their place and adjust to the new academic and social expectations of college.

Lack of Guidance and Support

When taking college courses through running start, students may not receive the same level of guidance and support that they would in high school. High school teachers and counselors are often more familiar with the needs and challenges of their students, whereas college professors may have less time and resources to dedicate to individual students. This can leave running start students feeling isolated and struggling to navigate the college system on their own.


While running start may seem like a great opportunity at first glance, it is important to consider the potential drawbacks before deciding to participate. The pressure to choose a major early, limited high school experience, difficulty transitioning, and lack of guidance and support are all valid concerns that should not be taken lightly. As someone who has experienced running start firsthand, I urge students to carefully weigh the pros and cons and make an informed decision that aligns with their individual goals and needs.