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Colleges with the Highest Graduate Salaries in 2020 - Private Universities

AUG 04, 2020 • 14 min read

One of the things we understand at Crimson are the considerations families take into account when somebody is choosing their dream university. We understand that you may evaluate the prestige of the institution, superior faculty and facilities, the diverse student body and student life, research opportunities and life-long alumni connections.

However, we also understand that there are financial considerations, many of which are not realized until years into the future. Like many students and parents, we view a world class college education as an ‘investment’ towards a student’s future of job opportunities and professional and personal fulfillment.

Last year we brought you NBC’s first report on the private and public US colleges which indicates which of those gave the best return on investment in 2019. This year, NBC have released their 2020 report, and there have been some changes at the tops of the list.

The report again seeks to find the universities which ‘pay off the most’, or rather have the highest graduate salaries when compared to the average annual net cost of attending the college. Specifically, the ranks are formulated by dividing the average net cost of a school for the average American student (data from Tuition Tracker) by the average earnings of graduates 10 years after entering the workforce (data from Payscale).

Here are the top five private schools that offer the highest average salaries for tuition dollars (and the average cost assuming financial aid is received) - with the top five public school listings following in Part 2!

1. Stanford

Stanford Min

Average annual net cost (family income USD $48,001-$75,000): USD $3,490

Median salary for alumni with 0-5 years of experience: USD $79,000

Median salary for alumni with 10+ years of experience: USD $145,200

Continuing their run at the top of the list is Stanford. Located in Silicon Valley near San Francisco, this school is known for its STEM and entrepreneurship focus. It is the most highly selective school in the US, enrolling approximately 6,996 undergraduates at an admission rate of around 4.6%. It’s alumni have a reputation for entrepreneurship, producing, inventing, developing and championing hundreds of globally significant initiatives and companies. They are tied for the 6th best national university by USNews.

Did you know- Crimson Students are 3x more likely to gain admission to Stanford University.

If you would like to understand how likely you are to get into Stanford University based on your current scores, use our US College Admissions Calculator

2. Harvard

Harvard A

Average annual net cost (family income USD $48,001-$75,000): USD $3,900

Median salary for alumni with 0-5 years of experience: USD $74,800

Median salary for alumni with 10+ years of experience: USD $146,800

Founded in 1636, Harvard is the oldest, most famous and wealthiest university in the US, and is a member of the prestigious group of universities known as the Ivy League. It is known for its historic legacy, famous alumni, generous financial aid, and location in Cambridge, Massachusetts. They are currently ranked the 2nd best national university by USNews. Harvard is also the second most highly selective university in the US, enrolling about 6,755 undergraduates at an admission rate of around 4.92%. The most popular ‘concentrations’ you can study include economics, biology and mathematics.

Did you know - Crimson Students are 4x more likely to gain admission to Harvard University.

If you would like to understand how likely you are to get into Harvard University based on your current scores, use our US College Admissions Calculator

3. UChicago

University Of Chicago

Average annual net cost (family income USD $48,001-$75,000): $5,454

Median salary for alumni with 0-5 years of experience: USD $64,000

Median salary for alumni with 10+ years of experience: USD $114,200

This highly regarded private university located in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood is tied for 6th best university in the US by USNews. UChicago is not only known for its strong programs in STEM, psychology, history and the social sciences, but also its curriculum which requires students to complete courses in three areas: humanities, civilization studies and the arts; natural sciences; and social sciences. UChicago enrols approximately 6,300 undergraduates.

If you would like to understand how likely you are to get into The University of Chicago based on your current scores, use our US College Admissions Calculator

4. Princeton

Rapid Fire Ep 2 Princeton University

Average annual net cost (family income $48,001-$75,000): $7,435

Median salary for alumni with 0-5 years of experience: USD $75,200

Median salary for alumni with 10+ years of experience: USD $139,400

The New Jersey-based Princeton is ranked the best university in the US by USNews and enrols 5,428 undergrad students. Founded in 1746, it is also the fourth-oldest college in the United States and the second Ivy League university on our list. They offer 37 majors or ‘concentrations’ to undergrads and have a world-class reputation for studies in engineering & applied sciences and public & international affairs.

Did you know - Crimson Students are 4x more likely to gain admission to Princeton University.

If you would like to understand how likely you are to get into Princeton University based on your current scores, use our US College Admissions Calculator

5. Dartmouth

Dartmouth

Average annual net cost (family income USD $48,001-$75,000): USD $7,167

Median salary for alumni with 0-5 years of experience: USD $71,500

Median salary for alumni with 10+ years of experience: USD $130,900

Dartmouth College is an Ivy League university located in Hanover, New Hampshire, that enrolls approximately 4,400 undergraduate students. It is well-known for its world-class social sciences, engineering and biology majors. It is also famous for its rural setting and its forrest spaces, which is in-part responsible for the school’s varsity sport nickname "The Big Green". They are tied 12th best national university by USNews.

Did you know- Crimson Students are 4x more likely to gain admission to Dartmouth.

If you would like to understand how likely you are to get into Dartmouth College based on your current scores, use our US College Admissions Calculator

Want to know more? Check out Part 2 of the blog with the top 5 public schools which offer the highest returns for their students after graduation!

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