South Dakota School of Mines

Best Colleges for Return on Investment

  1. Engineering Schools Dominate 2011 Ranking
    1

    Engineering Schools Dominate 2011 Ranking

    Last year Bloomberg Businessweek, in conjunction with PayScale, launched "What’s Your College Degree Worth?" The annual ranking of U.S. colleges and universities was based on a new way of analyzing the return on investment of a college education, and it came to a startling conclusion: As investments, most college degrees leave a lot to be desired.

    To some readers, the ranking itself left a lot to be desired, so we went back to the drawing board and made several changes to the way we calculate return on investment, or ROI. We increased the number of ranked schools by 25 percent, to nearly 700. And in addition to a 30-year ROI, we calculated a 15-year ROI. But the big change had to do with financial aid. Last year, we used each school’s "sticker price" to determine ROI. We did that again this year, but we also did a second calculation using the "net price," which takes into account the amount of grant aid each school awards. We think the two different calculations more accurately reflect the actual experience of students and their families—those who don’t qualify for financial aid, and those who do.

    ROI is a function of two things: how much one spends getting a degree, and how much graduates earn over the course of their careers. PayScale, which collects pay information from individuals who use its online pay comparison tools, examined a huge database of 1.4 million pay reports and information on college costs. It then determined how much graduates of each school earned (after deducting the net cost of their degrees) above the typical pay for a high school graduate over the same period. In a very real sense, this is what a college degree from each institution is "worth" in dollars and cents.

    Unlike most other rankings of this type, this one takes into account each school’s six-year graduation rate, providing a more accurate way of assessing a school’s ROI. If graduates of two schools earn exactly the same amount over the 30-year study period, after deducting the cost of their degrees, but one has a 90 percent graduation rate and the other graduates only 50 percent of its students, the one with the poor graduation rate will have a much lower ROI, reflecting the diminished likelihood of graduating.

    What follows is a state-by-state breakdown of the schools with the best ROI. For each state we list the school with the best ROI and up to three runners-up. For the complete ranking of all 693 schools, check out our interactive table. For a more detailed description of the methodology and findings, see "College ROI: What We Found"

    Note: The ranking was prepared by PayScale and is based on self-reported pay data obtained through its online pay comparison tools; on average, pay reports from about 1,000 alumni from each school were used in the return on investment calculations. Sticker Price is the total cost of attendance (tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies) for the average length of time required to obtain a bachelor’s degree at each institution for a 2010 graduate. Net Cost subtracts from that amount the average local, state, federal, and institutional grant aid awarded to full-time, first-time undergraduates. Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost includes 2009-10 tuition, housing, books, and other supplies for a student living on campus. Graduation Rate is a six-year rate for the cohort entering in the fall of 2003. Each state’s schools were ranked according to the 30-Year Net Return on Investment, which represents the average earnings of a graduate (in excess of those of a high school graduate) in 2010 dollars after deducting the net cost of the degree and adjusting for the school’s graduation rate. The 30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only is the same figure, assuming a 100 percent graduation rate. Annualized Net ROI is based on the ratio of the earnings gain from a college degree to the cost of the degree; it takes into account the school’s graduation rate and includes wage inflation of 4.3 percent per year. In the PayScale study, state schools are ranked twice, with ROI calculated using in-state and out-of-state tuition. ROI data shown for public schools was calculated using in-state tuition. ROI for public schools using out-of-state tuition can be found here.

    Data: PayScale, Integrated Postsecondary Educational Data System, College Board, Bloomberg Businessweek research
    South Dakota School of Mines
  2. Best College Return on Investment: Alabama
    2

    Best College Return on Investment: Alabama

    Auburn University
    Auburn

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 79 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (25 percent), Engineering (14 percent), Education (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $78,930 (in-state), $128,800 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $45,230 (in-state), $95,100 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $19,490 (in-state), $31,970 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $7,426
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 56 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 211 (in-state), 246 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 67 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $569,400
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $849,900
    Annualized Net ROI: 13.5 percent

    Runners-Up

    Samford University
    University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa
    University of Alabama, Huntsville

    Auburn University
  3. Best College Return on Investment: Alaska
    3

    Best College Return on Investment: Alaska

    University of Alaska
    Anchorage

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 77 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (21 percent), Health Professions (16 percent), Engineering (8 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $74,420 (in-state), $117,600 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $56,210 (in-state), $99,400 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $16,604 (in-state), $26,504 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $3,697
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 40 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 912 (in-state), 933 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 25 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $143,200
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $572,800
    Annualized Net ROI: 8.5 percent

    Runners-Up
    None
    University of Alaska
  4. Best College Return on Investment: Arizona
    4

    Best College Return on Investment: Arizona

    Arizona State University
    Tempe

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 87 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (18 percent), Education (8 percent), Interdisciplinary Studies (8 percent), Social Sciences (8 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $81,760 (in-state), $136,100 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $44,020 (in-state), $98,390 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $20,290 (in-state), $33,075 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $8,223
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 69 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 312 (in-state), 345 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 56 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $467,800
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $835,400
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.9 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Arizona
    Northern Arizona University
    Grand Canyon University
    Arizona State University
  5. Best College Return on Investment: Arkansas
    5

    Best College Return on Investment: Arkansas

    University of Arkansas
    Fayetteville

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 56 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (24 percent), Engineering (9 percent), Communications/Journalism (7 percent), Social Sciences (7 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $77,960 (in-state), $116,100 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $45,280 (in-state), $83,390 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $18,241 (in-state), 27,118 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $7,276
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 50 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 350 (in-state), 377 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 59 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $435,300
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $737,800
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.5 percent

    Runners-Up
    Harding University
    University of Central Arkansas
    Arkansas State University

    University of Arkansas
  6. Best College Return on Investment: California
    6

    Best College Return on Investment: California

    California Institute of Technology
    Pasadena

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research—Engineering
    Applicants Admitted: 13 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Engineering (34 percent), Physical Sciences (25 percent), Mathematics (18 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $198,700
    Net Cost: $91,250
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $49,572
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $25,439
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 58 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 1
    Graduation Rate: 89 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,809,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $2,033,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 15.1 percent

    Runners-Up
    Harvey Mudd College
    Stanford University
    University of California, Berkeley
    California Institute of Technology
  7. Best College Return on Investment: Colorado
    7

    Best College Return on Investment: Colorado

    Colorado School of Mines
    Golden

    The Basics
    School Type: Public—Engineering
    Applicants Admitted: 46 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Engineering (88 percent), Mathematics (7 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $92,820 (in-state), $152,300 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $60,960 (in-state), $120,400 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $23,464 (in-state), $37,624(out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $7,138
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 70 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 36 (in-state), 41 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 67 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,066,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,591,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.6 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Colorado, Boulder
    University of Denver
    Colorado College
    Colorado School of Mines
  8. Best College Return on Investment: Connecticut
    8

    Best College Return on Investment: Connecticut

    Yale University
    New Haven

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research—Ivy League
    Applicants Admitted: 8 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (27 percent), History (11 percent), Interdisciplinary Studies (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $207,000
    Net Cost: $69,030
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $52,950
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $33,714
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 59 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 12
    Graduation Rate: 98 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,299,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,326,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.9 percent

    Runners-Up
    Wesleyan University
    Fairfield University
    Trinity College
    Yale University
  9. Best College Return on Investment: Delaware
    9

    Best College Return on Investment: Delaware

    University of Delaware
    Newark

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 54 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (20 percent), Social Sciences (13 percent), Education (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $80,250 (in-state), $130,800 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $53,880 (in-state), $104,400 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $21,094 (in-state), $34,794 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $6,220
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 46 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 175 (in-state), 199 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 68 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $611,900
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $899,900
    Annualized Net ROI: 13.1 percent

    Runners-Up
    None


    University of Delaware
  10. Best College Return on Investment: District of Columbia
    10

    Best College Return on Investment: District of Columbia

    Georgetown
    District of Columbia

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 20 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (31 percent), Business/Marketing (26 percent), English (7 percent), Health Professions (7 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $211,800
    Net Cost: $102,900
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $54,954
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $26,794
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 45 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 40
    Graduation Rate: 93 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,032,00
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,110,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.7 percent

    Runners-Up
    George Washington University
    American University
    Catholic University of America

    Georgetown University
  11. Best College Return on Investment: Florida
    11

    Best College Return on Investment: Florida

    University of Florida
    Gainesville

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 43 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (15 percent), Social Sciences (14 percent), Engineering (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $64,530 (in-state), $134,500 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $40,900 (in-state), $110,900 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $16,183 (in-state), $35,554 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $5,459
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 98 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 125 (in-state), 155 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 82 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $707,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $862,200
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.6 percent

    Runners-Up
    Florida Institute of Technology
    University of Miami
    Florida State University

    University of Florida
  12. Best College Return on Investment: Georgia
    12

    Best College Return on Investment: Georgia

    Georgia Institute of Technology
    Atlanta

    The Basics
    School Type: Public—Engineering
    Applicants Admitted: 52 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Engineering (58 percent), Business/Marketing (14 percent), Computer/Information Sciences (6 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $77,980 (in-state), $157,100 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $39,390 (in-state), $118,500 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $18,210 (in-state), $36,420 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $8,195
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 76 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 23 (in-state), 29 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 79 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,159,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,467,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 16.5 percent

    Runners-Up
    Emory University
    University of Georgia
    Georgia State University

    Georgia Institute of Technology
  13. Best College Return on Investment: Hawaii
    13

    Best College Return on Investment: Hawaii

    University of Hawaii at Manoa
    Honolulu

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 71 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (19 percent), Education (13 percent), Social Sciences (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $76,560 (in-state), $122,100 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $56,480 (in-state), $102,000 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $18,457 (in-state), $30,505 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $4,120
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 55 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 659 (in-state), 719 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 48 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $238,800
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $497,500
    Annualized Net ROI: 9.9 percent

    Runners-Up
    Hawaii Pacific University

    University of Hawaii
  14. Best College Return on Investment: Idaho
    14

    Best College Return on Investment: Idaho

    University of Idaho
    Moscow

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 77 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Not Available

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $77,310 (in-state), $122,900 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $49,790 (in-state), $95,340 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $18,480 (in-state), $28,560 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $5,904
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 93 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 372 (in-state), 404 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 56 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $415,900
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $742,700
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.0 percent

    Runners-Up
    Idaho State University
    Boise State University
    University of Idaho
  15. Best College Return on Investment: Illinois
    15

    Best College Return on Investment: Illinois

    University of Chicago
    Chicago

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 19 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (34 percent), Biology (11 percent), Foreign Languages/Literature (8 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $208,900
    Net Cost: $94,170
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $54,290
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $28,068
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 60 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 38
    Graduation Rate: 92 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,043,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,134,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 13.0 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
    Northwestern University
    Illinois Institute of Technology

    University of Chicago
  16. Best College Return on Investment: Indiana
    16

    Best College Return on Investment: Indiana

    University of Notre Dame
    South Bend

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 29 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (24 percent), Social Sciences (16 percent), Engineering (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $194,500
    Net Cost: $94,120
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $51,297
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $24,637
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 57 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 10
    Graduation Rate: 96 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,452,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,513,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.2 percent

    Runners-Up
    Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
    Purdue University
    Butler University

    University of Notre Dame
  17. Best College Return on Investment: Iowa
    17

    Best College Return on Investment: Iowa

    Iowa State University
    Ames

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 85 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (21 percent), Engineering (17 percent), Agriculture (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $78,300 (in-state), $127,300 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $51,320 (in-state), $100,300 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $18,366 (in-state), $29,586 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $5,928
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 72 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 187 (in-state), 219 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 69 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $596,200
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $864,100
    Annualized Net ROI: 13.2 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Iowa
    Grinnell College
    Drake University

    Iowa State University
  18. Best College Return on Investment: Kansas
    18

    Best College Return on Investment: Kansas

    University of Kansas
    Lawrence

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 93 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (13 percent), Communications/Journalism (12 percent), Social Sciences (11 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $80,460 (in-state), $125,800 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $58,590 (in-state), $103,900 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $20,156 (in-state), $32,125 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $4,781
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 47 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 352 (in-state), 382 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 61 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $435,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $713,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 11.7 percent

    Runners-Up
    Kansas State University
    Baker University
    Wichita State University
    University of Kansas
  19. Best College Return on Investment: Kentucky
    19

    Best College Return on Investment: Kentucky

    University of Kentucky
    Lexington

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 69 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (18 percent), Communications/Journalism (10 percent), Education (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $83,630 (in-state), $119,400 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $57,250 (in-state), $93,040 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $20,183 (in-state), $28,738 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $5,797
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 87 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 403 (in-state), 432 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 60 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $391,600
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $652,700
    Annualized Net ROI: 11.4 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Louisville
    Western Kentucky University
    Murray State University
    University of Kentucky
  20. Best College Return on Investment: Louisiana
    20

    Best College Return on Investment: Louisiana

    Tulane University
    New Orleans

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 26 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (76 percent), Law (14 percent), Computer/Information Sciences (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $202,800
    Net Cost: $98,640
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $52,240
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $24,856
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 79 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 161
    Graduation Rate: 73 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $637,900
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $873,800
    Annualized Net ROI: 11.2 percent

    Runners-Up
    Louisiana State University
    Louisiana Tech University
    Loyola University, New Orleans
    Tulane University
  21. Best College Return on Investment: Maine
    21

    Best College Return on Investment: Maine

    Bates College
    Lewiston

    The Basics
    School Type: Private—Liberal Arts
    Applicants Admitted: 32 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (29 percent), Psychology (11 percent), History (9 percent), Visual/Performing Arts (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $202,400
    Net Cost: $78,740
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $53,350
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $30,503
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 41 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 81
    Graduation Rate: 91 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $810,100
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $890,200
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.8 percent

    Runners-Up
    Bowdoin College
    Colby College
    University of Maine, Orono

    Bates College
  22. Best College Return on Investment: Maryland
    22

    Best College Return on Investment: Maryland

    Johns Hopkins University
    Baltimore

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 21 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Health Professions (23 percent), Engineering (17 percent), Social Sciences (16 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $205,400
    Net Cost: $98,360
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $53,390
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $25,969
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 47 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 34
    Graduation Rate: 91 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,071,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,177,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.9 percent

    Runners-Up
    Loyola University Maryland
    University of Maryland
    St. Mary’s College of Maryland

    Johns Hopkins University
  23. Best College Return on Investment: Massachusetts
    23

    Best College Return on Investment: Massachusetts

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    Cambridge

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research—Engineering
    Applicants Admitted: 10 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Engineering (38 percent), Computer/Information Sciences (13 percent), Biology (11 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $201,000
    Net Cost: $72,560
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $52,000
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $31,344
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 65 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 3
    Graduation Rate: 91 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,635,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,797,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 15.5 percent

    Runners-Up
    Harvard University
    Babson College
    Amherst College
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  24. Best College Return on Investment: Michigan
    24

    Best College Return on Investment: Michigan

    University of Michigan
    Ann Arbor

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 51 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (18 percent), Engineering (16 percent), Psychology (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $92,710 (in-state), $182,000 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $61,200 (in-state), $150,500 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $23,721 (in-state), $46,999 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $7,497
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 71 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 63 (in-state), 78 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 89 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $898,900
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,010,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.0 percent

    Runners-Up
    Kettering University
    Michigan Technological University
    Michigan State University
    University of Michigan
  25. Best College Return on Investment: Minnesota
    25

    Best College Return on Investment: Minnesota

    Carleton College
    Northfield

    The Basics
    School Type: Private—Liberal Arts
    Applicants Admitted: 31 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (22 percent), Physical Sciences (13 percent), Biology (12 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $194,700
    Net Cost: $96,080
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $52,360
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $24,452
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 62 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 77
    Graduation Rate: 92 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $822,900
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $894,500
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.1 percent

    Runners-Up
    Macalester College
    University of Minnesota
    University of St. Thomas
    Carleton College
  26. Best College Return on Investment: Mississippi
    26

    Best College Return on Investment: Mississippi

    Mississippi State University
    Mississippi State

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 66 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (22 percent), Education (20 percent), Engineering (11 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $76,680 (in-state), $107,600 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $50,300 (in-state), $81,250 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $17,871 (in-state), $25,741 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $5,728
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 85 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 351 (in-state), 371 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 61 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $435,100
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $713,300
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.2 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Mississippi
    Mississippi College
    University of Southern Mississippi
    Mississippi State University
  27. Best College Return on Investment: Missouri
    27

    Best College Return on Investment: Missouri

    Washington University
    St. Louis

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 21 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (16 percent), Business/Marketing (12 percent), Engineering (12 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $208,700
    Net Cost: $112,100
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $54,533
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $23,513
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 57 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 57
    Graduation Rate: 93 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $928,100
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $998,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.0 percent

    Runners-Up
    Missouri University of Science and Technology
    St. Louis University
    University of Missouri, Columbia

    Washington University
  28. Best College Return on Investment: Montana
    28

    Best College Return on Investment: Montana

    Montana State University
    Bozeman

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 61 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (13 percent), Engineering (10 percent), Health Professions (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $78,230 (in-state), $129,300 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $39,030 (in-state), $90,100 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $17,468 (in-state), $29,131 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $8,154
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 39 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 431 (in-state), 471 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 52 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $370,800
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $713,100
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.5 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Montana
    Montana State University, Billings

    Montana State University
  29. Best College Return on Investment: Nebraska
    29

    Best College Return on Investment: Nebraska

    Creighton University
    Omaha

    The Basics
    School Type: Private
    Applicants Admitted: 78 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (21 percent), Health Professions (20 percent), Biology (12 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $161,500
    Net Cost: $98,740
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $42,158
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $15,088
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 95 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 237
    Graduation Rate: 75 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $544,800
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $726,400
    Annualized Net ROI: 10.7 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Nebraska, Lincoln
    University of Nebraska, Omaha
    University of Nebraska, Kearney

    Creighton University
  30. Best College Return on Investment: Nevada
    30

    Best College Return on Investment: Nevada

    University of Nevada
    Reno

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 91 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (15 percent), Health Professions (10 percent), Social Sciences (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $95,310 (in-state), $148,200 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $77,030 (in-state), $129,900 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $20,345 (in-state), $32,685 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $3,705
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 87 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 514 (in-state), 559 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 46 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $311,600
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $677,400
    Annualized Net ROI: 9.8 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Nevada, Las Vegas


    University of Nevada
  31. Best College Return on Investment: New Hampshire
    31

    Best College Return on Investment: New Hampshire

    Dartmouth College
    Hanover

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research—Ivy League
    Applicants Admitted: 12 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (31 percent), Biology (11 percent), History (7 percent), Psychology (7 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $202,300
    Net Cost: $72,850
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $52,973
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $31,536
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 51 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 6
    Graduation Rate: 94 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,599,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,701,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 15.4 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of New Hampshire
    Southern New Hampshire University
    Plymouth State University
    Dartmouth College
  32. Best College Return on Investment: New Jersey
    32

    Best College Return on Investment: New Jersey

    Princeton University
    Princeton

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research—Ivy League
    Applicants Admitted: 9 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (24 percent), Engineering (19 percent), Biology (8 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $198,700
    Net Cost: $66,270
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $51,260
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $32,449
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 57 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 4
    Graduation Rate: 97 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,623,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,673,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 15.9 percent

    Runners-Up
    Stevens Institute of Technology
    New Jersey Institute of Technology
    Rutgers University

    Princeton University
  33. Best College Return on Investment: New Mexico
    33

    Best College Return on Investment: New Mexico

    New Mexico State University
    Las Cruces

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 95 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (20 percent), Education (12 percent), Health Professions (8 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $79,300 (in-state), $126,900 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $51,510 (in-state), $99,070 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $17,434 (in-state), $27,586 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $5,685
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 82 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 522 (in-state), 562 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 45 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $306,900
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $682,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 10.9 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of New Mexico


    The Roundup at New Mexico State University
  34. Best College Return on Investment: New York
    34

    Best College Return on Investment: New York

    Columbia University
    New York

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research—Ivy League
    Applicants Admitted: 10 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (25 percent), Engineering (21 percent), Biology (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $207,000
    Net Cost: $70,030
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $54,294
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $33,274
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 47 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 14
    Graduation Rate: 93 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,286,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,383,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.8 percent

    Runners-Up
    Colgate University
    Cornell University
    Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

    Columbia University
  35. Best College Return on Investment: North Carolina
    35

    Best College Return on Investment: North Carolina

    Duke University
    Durham

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 19 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (27 percent), Engineering (17 percent), Psychology (11 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $201,300
    Net Cost: $85,100
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $53,035
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $28,455
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 51 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 7
    Graduation Rate: 95 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,529,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,609,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.7 percent

    Runners-Up
    Wake Forest University
    Davidson College
    North Carolina State University

    Duke University
  36. Best College Return on Investment: North Dakota
    36

    Best College Return on Investment: North Dakota

    North Dakota State University
    Fargo

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 77 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (19 percent), Engineering (15 percent), Health Professions (12 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $71,410 (in-state), $110,700 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $55,540 (in-state), $94,780 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $16,323 (in-state), $25,422 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $3,368
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 53 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 373 (in-state), 396 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 52 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $415,400
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $798,800
    Annualized Net ROI: 11.7 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of North Dakota


    North Dakota State University
  37. Best College Return on Investment: Ohio
    37

    Best College Return on Investment: Ohio

    Case Western Reserve University
    Cleveland

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 67 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Engineering (24 percent), Social Sciences (13 percent), Biology (12 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $196,200
    Net Cost: $103,000
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $49,578
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $21,997
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 85 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 46
    Graduation Rate: 81 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,002,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,237,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.6 percent

    Runners-Up
    Miami University
    Denison University
    University of Dayton

    Case Western Reserve University
  38. Best College Return on Investment: Oklahoma
    38

    Best College Return on Investment: Oklahoma

    University of Tulsa
    Tulsa

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 39 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (20 percent), Engineering (18 percent), Visual/Performing Arts (8 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $156,700
    Net Cost: $83,900
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $41,295
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $16,844
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 94 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 238
    Graduation Rate: 62 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $543,800
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $877,100
    Annualized Net ROI: 11.2 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Oklahoma
    Oklahoma State University
    Southern Nazarene University
    University of Tulsa
  39. Best College Return on Investment: Oregon
    39

    Best College Return on Investment: Oregon

    University of Portland
    Portland

    The Basics
    School Type: Private
    Applicants Admitted: 65 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Health Professions (27 percent), Business/Marketing (13 percent), Biology (8 percent), Foreign Languages/Literature (8 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $167,400
    Net Cost: $106,700
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $44,311
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $14,829
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 88 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 195
    Graduation Rate: 75 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $584,700
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $779,600
    Annualized Net ROI: 10.7 percent

    Runners-Up
    Oregon State University
    Linfield College
    University of Oregon
    University of Portland
  40. Best College Return on Investment: Pennsylvania
    40

    Best College Return on Investment: Pennsylvania

    University of Pennsylvania
    Philadelphia

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research—Ivy League
    Applicants Admitted: 14 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (22 percent), Social Sciences (15 percent), Engineering (12 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $203,900
    Net Cost: $80,210
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $53,250
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $30,288
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 44 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 9
    Graduation Rate: 95 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,473,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,551,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.8 percent

    Runners-Up
    Lehigh University
    Carnegie Mellon University
    Lafayette College
    University of Pennsylvania
  41. Best College Return on Investment: Rhode Island
    41

    Best College Return on Investment: Rhode Island

    Brown University
    Providence

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research—Ivy League
    Applicants Admitted: 9 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (23 percent), Biology (10 percent), Visual/Performing Arts (7 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $202,200
    Net Cost: $83,740
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $52,030
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $28,860
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 45 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 28
    Graduation Rate: 95 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,101,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,159,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 13.6 percent

    Runners-Up
    Providence College
    Rhode Island School of Design
    Bryant University

    Brown University
  42. Best College Return on Investment:South Carolina
    42

    Best College Return on Investment:South Carolina

    Clemson University
    Clemson

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 64 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Physical Sciences (30 percent), Business/Marketing (16 percent), Engineering (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $94,890 (in-state), $148,200 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $55,210 (in-state), $108,500 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $23,478 (in-state), $37,788 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $9,065
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 90 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 124 (in-state), 145 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 77 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $709,900
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $921,900
    Annualized Net ROI: 13.5 percent

    Runners-Up
    Furman University
    University of South Carolina
    Bob Jones University

    Clemson University
  43. Best College Return on Investment: South Dakota
    43

    Best College Return on Investment: South Dakota

    South Dakota School of Mines & Technology
    Rapid City

    The Basics
    School Type: Public—Engineering
    Applicants Admitted: 89 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Engineering (79 percent), Interdisciplinary Studies (9 percent), Physical Sciences (6 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $74,650 (in-state), $92,820 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $53,050 (in-state), $71,210 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $17,660 (in-state), $19,040 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $4,370
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 72 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 398 (in-state), 408 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 35 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $394,200
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,126,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 11.7 percent

    Runners-Up
    South Dakota State University
    University of South Dakota
    Black Hills State University

    South Dakota School of Mines
  44. Best College Return on Investment: Tennessee
    44

    Best College Return on Investment: Tennessee

    Vanderbilt University
    Nashville

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 18 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (29 percent), Engineering (13 percent), Foreign Languages/Literature (7 percent), Interdisciplinary Studies (7 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $207,400
    Net Cost: $77,150
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $54,718
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $31,857
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 57 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 43
    Graduation Rate: 91 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,021,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,122,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 13.6 percent

    Runners-Up
    Tennessee Technological University
    University of Tennessee
    Lipscomb University

    Vanderbilt University
  45. Best College Return on Investment: Texas
    45

    Best College Return on Investment: Texas

    Rice University
    Houston

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 21 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Engineering (17 percent), Social Sciences (17 percent), Biology (8 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $174,000
    Net Cost: $68,680
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $45,637
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $25,581
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 68 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 24
    Graduation Rate: 93 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,150,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,237,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.5 percent

    Runners-Up
    Texas A&M University
    University of Texas, Austin
    Southern Methodist University

    Rice University
  46. Best College Return on Investment: Utah
    46

    Best College Return on Investment: Utah

    Brigham Young University
    Provo

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 64 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (14 percent), Biology (11 percent), Social Sciences (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $73,210
    Net Cost: $53,020
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $15,830
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $4,090
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 62 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 102
    Graduation Rate: 77 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $746,200
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $969,100
    Annualized Net ROI: 13.8 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Utah
    Utah State University
    Weber State University

    Brigham Young University
  47. Best College Return on Investment: Vermont
    47

    Best College Return on Investment: Vermont

    Middlebury Collge
    Middlebury

    The Basics
    School Type: Private—Liberal Arts
    Applicants Admitted: 17 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (22 percent), Interdisciplinary Studies (12 percent), Physical Sciences (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $209,100
    Net Cost: $76,240
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $54,030
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $32,346
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 44 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 85
    Graduation Rate: 92 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $801,400
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $871,100
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.8 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Vermont


    Middlebury College
  48. Best College Return on Investment: Virginia
    48

    Best College Return on Investment: Virginia

    Washington and Lee University
    Lexington

    The Basics
    School Type: Private
    Applicants Admitted: 19 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (24 percent), Social Sciences (21 percent), Foreign Languages/Literature (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $191,100
    Net Cost: $69,000
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $51,130
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $30,277
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 50 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 32
    Graduation Rate: 91 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $1,076,000
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $1,182,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 14.2 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Virginia
    College of William and Mary
    Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

    Washington and Lee University
  49. Best College Return on Investment: Washington
    49

    Best College Return on Investment: Washington

    University of Washington
    Seattle

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 57 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences (17 percent), Business/Marketing (11 percent), Biology (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $81,320 (in-state), $151,000 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $34,680 (in-state), $104,400 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $20,445 (in-state), $37,120 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $10,611
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 31 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 92 (in-state), 110 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 81 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $785,300
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $969,500
    Annualized Net ROI: 15.6 percent

    Runners-Up
    Whitman College
    Gonzaga University
    University of Puget Sound

    University of Washington
  50. Best College Return on Investment: West Virginia
    50

    Best College Return on Investment: West Virginia

    West Virginia University
    Morgantown

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 86 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (12 percent), Interdisciplinary Studies (10 percent), Communications/Journalism (9 percent), Engineering (9 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $67,820 (in-state), $113,400 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $42,920 (in-state), $88,530 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $16,034 (in-state), $27,132 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $5,492
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 71 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 319 (in-state), 343 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 59 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $464,200
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $786,800
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.9 percent

    Runners-Up
    West Virginia Wesleyan College
    Shepherd University
    Marshall University
    West Virginia University
  51. Best College Return on Investment: Wisconsin
    51

    Best College Return on Investment: Wisconsin

    Marquette University
    Milwaukee

    The Basics
    School Type: Private Research
    Applicants Admitted: 62 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Business/Marketing (24 percent), Communications/Journalism (12 percent), Engineering (10 percent), Social Sciences (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $162,700
    Net Cost: $99,900
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $41,026
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $14,739
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 83 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 114
    Graduation Rate: 80 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $725,600
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $907,000
    Annualized Net ROI: 11.6 percent

    Runners-Up
    University of Wisconsin, Madison
    Milwaukee School of Engineering
    University of Wisconsin, Platteville

    Marquette University
  52. Best College Return on Investment: Wyoming
    52

    Best College Return on Investment: Wyoming

    University of Wyoming
    Laramie

    The Basics
    School Type: Public
    Applicants Admitted: 95 percent
    Most Popular Majors: Education (14 percent), Business/Marketing (12 percent), Health Professions (10 percent)

    The Payout
    Sticker Price: $70,370 (in-state), $101,200 (out-of-state)
    Net Cost: $42,980 (in-state), $73,780 (out-of-state)
    Annual Out-of-Pocket Cost: $16,020 (in-state), $23,940 (out-of-state)
    Average Annual Financial Aid Package: $5,750
    Undergraduates Receiving Aid: 90 percent

    The Payoff
    National ROI Rank: 458 (in-state), 484 (out-of-state)
    Graduation Rate: 55 percent
    30-Year Net Return on Investment: $354,100
    30-Year Net Return for Graduates Only: $643,800
    Annualized Net ROI: 12.0 percent

    Runners-Up
    None
    University of Wyoming