8x10" color contact prints are really beautiful. If your instructor is amenable, you won't regret making that choice. You can use the school's enlargers for exposure, since you'll need to be able to filter the light for color balance. The main thing is to figure out if the class will be working with transparencies and Ilfochrome or C-41 negs and C-prints (RA-4).

I wouldn't process 8x10" color negs or transparencies in trays, but you might consider setting up a temperature controlled tank line with hangers or use print drums like the Unicolor drums, if you can't afford a Jobo Expert Drum.