See the full rankings here: Colleges With the Best Return on Investment

When deciding where to attend college, it’s crucial to consider more than just the cost of tuition and other expenses.

It’s also important to factor in your projected salary and debt levels after graduation, as these can help you get an idea of how much financial stress you may face as a young adult.

Many students graduate with tens of thousands of dollars in debt each year, making it hard to achieve life goals such as buying a house, getting married, and having children.

In fact, our most recent data shows that graduates with student loans have $28,565 in debt, on average, when they walk across the stage to receive their diplomas. When factoring students with no debt as well, the average is still $16,649.

Future salary is also important to consider because having a higher income makes it easier to repay the debt that you may take on to pay for college.

To help students and their families make more informed decisions about where to attend college, LendEDU has released our fifth annual College Risk-Reward Indicator study.

This study analyzes 798 four-year colleges and universities throughout the nation to find the institutions with the best return on investment for the average student.

What Is CRRI & Why Should You Consider It?
For the College Risk-Reward Indicator, LendEDU has defined the risk of attending a four-year college or university as the average student loan debt per graduate at that institution. The reward of attending that same four-year college or university is the average early career pay for graduates. Average early career pay for graduates is defined as the median salary for alumni with bachelor’s degrees with 0 to 5 years of work experience. 

To calculate the CRRI for each school, the following formula was used: 

CRRI = Average Early Pay / Average Student Loan Debt at Graduation
Why does this matter for students?

The key to being financially prosperous as a young college graduate is having low student loan debt and high income. On the other hand, high levels of debt and low pay are a recipe for financial hardship.

LendEDU’s 2020 CRRI study analyzed 798 private and public four-year colleges and universities in the United States. Schools that recorded the highest CRRI values (ex: Princeton – 47.44) should be considered as the best risk-adjusted choices for undergraduate students. On the other hand, institutions with the lowest CRRI values should be considered the worst risk-adjusted choices for prospective students. 

See the full rankings here: Colleges With the Best Return on Investment