The College Scorecard is neat tool from the Department of Education.
You can filter out schools to find the top schools.
Three factors are quickly viewable:
– Average annual cost (in federal aid),
– graduation rate, and
– salary 10 years after attending.
Made a quick filter… to find the schools with lower cost, higher graduation rate, and higher salary after attending.
Filter parameters: Annual cost under $19k. Graduation rate above 50%. Salary 10 years after attending is $60k.
These are the schools that display, out of the many thousands.
- Illinois Tech
- University of Michigan Ann Arbor
- Michigan Tech
- Georgia Tech
- Missouri S&T
- Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo
- UC Berkeley
- Several military prep colleges
Tried to order these by location – upper midwest, northeast, mid-atlantic region, southern states, midwest, Cali, then the military prep colleges. Won’t focus as much on these military prep colleges – as most students likely make their long term commitment to the military, in exchange for a full scholarship.
The university affords its customer with a reputable third-party validator that you have acquired knowledge, and provides access to social networks. The university also avails access to research facilities working alongside professors who conduct research, professional experiences which are often largely inaccessible to people who are not customers of the university.
Albeit, any independent teacher can post tests online for their customers to take, and anyone can independently build products that people use as a third-party validation of your knowledge. Social networks have become digitized in the last decade (per FB, IG, LinkedIn, Twitter, Snap, YouTube, etc). Most literature research is available from a search engine, although, gaining experience using more costly hardware and software may be an unaffordable professional luxury without partnering with a university or large business.
Nevertheless, anyone who wants to attend college, would aspire to attend one of these listed schools. It begs the question, what is the significance to the colleges that do not meet these thresholds? Is the measurable economic ROI really there for the average typical graduate?
Most schools do have full scholarships available, but few students will have access to these monies. Most of the students end up taking out loans, which contributes to a decrease in ROI.
Conversely, the odds are in your favor, that if you attend these schools and study hard, that employers will favor your time and talent not unlike the other historic graduates of these colleges who have favored well. It is likely that the alumni networks at these schools are strong. They go back and hire one another, and actively recruit their fellow alumni to receive investment capital.
We have long discussed how to find high demand, low supply skills.
We quickly deduce and hypothesize from the results of this College Scorecard filter, that the schools who rank high, likely teach a higher proportion of their students the skills that are at the top of our fuller list.
For registered members, we review which majors, skills, concentrations, and academic programs are most popular at each school that directly contribute to the alumni earning higher wages at year 10.
Take note of the number of students, at these schools. When we view the number of undergraduates combined at these schools (minus the military prep colleges), there are 7333+6994+5260+14463+2963+6747+7049+5623+6857+19972+27496+26889+28120 students = 165,000 undergrad college students (over 4 years).
Only 41,000 students per year – – this is a tiny number.
There are 3 million graduates yearly from high school, each being encouraged to attend college. Less than 2% of those 3 million high school graduates will have a more optimal economic outcome 10 years after their collegiate experience college. Should college still be considered a viable economic path forward for most people?
Again, we set our parameters to have less than average annual cost, higher than average graduation rates, and higher than average salary after attending.
The earnings to debt ratio of the Harvard graduate is 12 — this is $80.5k salary at year 10 divided by the average federal loan upon graduation of $6.5k.
The MEDIAN earnings-to-debt ratio for the schools listed above is 3.2.
Most people would prefer that this ratio be as high as possible — higher earnings at year 10 and lower debt upon graduation — to maximize economic outcomes.
Graduates from these colleges will have a higher likelihood of earning higher wages (above $60k by year 10) and wages will be 3 times more by year 10 after graduation, than what they owed on graduation day.
Consider alternate strategies to rival the economic prowess of the alumni at these colleges.
Learn how to identify the high demand, low supply skills.
However possible, start USING these skills in no-risk, simulated environments to practice.
While nothing can match the powerful alumni networks at these historic institutions, find and join networks of professionals with similar skills and work to drive economic opportunity to those networks.