The 50 best US colleges for your money

Facebook/ Washington and Lee UniversityNiche named Washington and Lee University one of the best colleges for your money.
  • Attending a four-year university is more than agreeing to learn at an institution, it is a financial commitment than can last years after graduation.
  • Niche ranked the best colleges for your money based on net price and alumni earnings.
  • MIT, Stanford, and Harvard are the top three best value colleges in the US.

Deciding to attend a university is more than agreeing to learn and grow at an institution, it is a financial commitment than can stretch years after graduation.

Student debt is at an all time high in the US. Americans owe over $US1.4 trillion of student loan debt in 2018, according to Student Loan Hero. Finding a school that doesn’t break the bank and helps you make bank after graduation is more important than ever.

Niche ranked the best value four-year colleges in the US based on net price, alumni earnings, graduation rates, student debt, and millions of student and alumni reviews.

Net price is the average annual cost after financial aid for students receiving grant or scholarship aid, as reported by the college. Alumni earnings is the median earnings ten years after enrollment, or six years after graduation. Net price and alumni earnings were recorded by the U.S. Department of Education.

Keep reading to find out which colleges offer the best bang for your buck. We have included the annual sticker price of tuition, net price (average annual cost after considering typical financial aid amounts), and median earnings six years after graduation.


50. Michigan Technological University

Tuition:

In-state: $US15,04

Out-of-state: $US32,218

Net price: $US16, 276

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US64,700


49. Virginia Tech

Tuition:

In-state: $US13,230

Out-of-state: $US31,014

Net price: $US17,190

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US60,500


48. Clarkson University

Clarkson University

Tuition price: $US47,950

Net price: $US31,181

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US68,900


47. University of Chicago

Tuition price: $US56,034

Net price: $US31,068

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US65,500


46. Johns Hopkins University

Facebook/Johns Hopkins University

Tuition price: $US52,170

Net price: $US27,352

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US69,800


45. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Tuition price: $US51,000

Net price: $US37,434

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US77,900


44. Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Tuition price: $US48,628

Net price: $US40,666

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US82,600


43. Massachusetts Maritime Academy

Tuition:

In-state: $US8,398

Out-of-state: $US25,824

Net price: $US14,035

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US79,300


42. Washington University in St. Louis

Tuition price: $US51,533

Net price: $US28,824

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US66,300


41. University of Virginia

Tuition:

In-state: $US16,853

Out-of-state: $US47,273

Net price: $US15,945

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US60,700


40. College of Holy Cross

Tuition price: $US49,980

Net price: $US26,965

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US65,200


39. Williams College

Tuition price: $US53,550

Net price: $US18,167

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US54,100


38. Villanova University

Tuition price: $US50,554

Net price: $US33,270

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US74,500


37. Northwestern University

Tuition price: $US52,678

Net price: $US29,326

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US65,900


36. Vanderbilt University

Grant Halverson/Getty Images

Tuition price: $US47,664

Net price: $US23,150

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US64,500


35. Bentley University

Tuition price: $US48,000

Net price: $US35,579

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US80,600


34. Boston College

Tuition price: $US53,346

Net price: $US27,167

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US70,000


33. Columbia University

Tuition price: $US57,208

Net price: $US22,973

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US78,200


32. Carleton College

Tuition price: $US52,782

Net price: $US28,587

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US52,600


31. Virginia Military Institute

Tuition:

In-state: $US27,650

Out-of-state: $US53,338

Net price: $US16,195

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US63,200


30. Lafayette College

Tuition price: $US51,600

Net price: $US26,208

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US67,500


29. Claremont McKenna College

Tuition price: $US52,825

Net price: $US30,527

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US75,000


28. Tufts University

Tuition price: $US54,318

Net price: $US28,076

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US66,500


27. Brown University

Tuition price: $US53,419

Net price: $US25,264

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US63,100


26. Dartmouth College

Tuition price: $US53,496

Net price: $US21,177

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US70,000


25. Stevens Institute of Technology

Tuition price: $US52,395

Net price: $US37,168

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US87,300


24. Colorado School of Mines

Tuition:

In-state: $US18,386

Out-of-state: $US37,436

Net price: $US25,097

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US82,100


23. Carnegie Mellon University

Tuition price: $US53,910

Net price: $US35,250

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US81,800


22. Georgetown University

Tuition price: $US52,300

Net price: $US26,625

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US90,100


21. Lehigh University

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Tuition price: $US50,740

Net price: $US27,478

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US77,200


20. Cornell University

Tuition price: $US52,853

Net price: $US30,014

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US73,600


19. Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

Tuition price: $US48,012

Net price: $US41,691

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US79,200


18. Albany College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences

Tuition price: $US32,840

Net price: $US29,929

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US122,600


17. Colgate University

Tuition price: $US55,530

Net price: $US22,463

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US61,300


16. Harvey Mudd College

Tuition price: $US54,636

Net price: $US35,460

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US74,200


15. Babson College

Tuition price: $US49,664

Net price: $US27,453

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US91,400


14. St. Louis College of Pharmacy

Tuition price: $US29,451

Net price: $US26,252

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US120,400


13. Washington & Lee University

Tuition price: $US67,150

Net price: $US23,867

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US72,300


12. Georgia Institute of Technology

Tuition:

In-state: $US12,418

Out-of-state: $US33,014

Net price: $US13,340

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US75,800


11. Rice University

Tuition price: $US45,608

Net price: $US22,061

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US64,300


10. Princeton University

Tuition price: $US47,140

Net price: $US17,732

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US80,500


9. University of Pennsylvania

Tuition price: $US53,534

Net price: $US22,944

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US82,400


8. California Institute of Technology

Tuition price: $US49,908

Net price: $US26,839

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US74,200


7. University of Notre Dame

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Tuition price: $US51,505

Net price: $US26,683

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US71,600


6. United States Merchant Marine Academy

Spencer Pratt/ Getty

Tuition price: $US1,020

Net price: $US4,548

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US78,900


5. Yale University

Michael Marsland / Yale University

Tuition price: $US51,400

Net price: $US18,319

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US83,200


4. Duke University

Tuition price: $US53,744

Net price: $US19,950

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US77,900


3. Harvard University

Tuition price: $US48,949

Net price: $US16,205

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US90,900


2. Stanford University

Tuition price: $US49,617

Net price: $US16,695

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US85,700


1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Tuition price: $US49,892

Net price: $US21,576

Median earnings 6 years after graduation:$US94,200

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