How about a free college education? According to Forbes’ latest study on best value colleges, they found four colleges offering free tuition, the only catch is a short stint in military service.
U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Air Force Academy and U.S. Naval Academy all topped the list of best value colleges. The fact that they are free likely had something to do with their placement.
To get an idea of how schools were scored, Forbes used the following weighted average:
The rankings are based on five general categories: postgraduate success (30%), which evaluates alumni pay and prominence; student satisfaction (27.5%), which includes professor evaluations and freshman-to-sophomore retention rates; debt (17.5%), which penalizes schools for high student debt loads and default rates; four-year graduation rates (17.5%); and competitive awards (7.5%), which rewards schools whose students win prestigious scholarships and fellowships like the Rhodes, the Marshall and the Fulbright.
Below are the top ten.
|Best colleges for the money: The top 10|
|Rank||School||Total annual cost||Student population||SAT range||Applicants admitted|
|1||U.S. Military Academy||Free||4,621||1140-1350||14%|
|2||U.S. Air Force Academy||Free||4,620||1230-1380||17%|
|3||U.S. Naval Academy||Free||4,552||1140-1360||10%|
|4||Cooper Union (N.Y.)||Free||995||1220-1510||7%|
|5||U.S. Merchant Marine Academy||$7,281||982||N/A||38%|
|6||College of the Ozarks (Mo.)||$8,776||1,347||N/A||9%|
|8||U.S. Coast Guard Academy||$4,600||973||1150-1360||25%|
|9||Brigham Young University, Idaho||$12,920||14,944||990-1230||97%|
|10||University of Wyoming||$24,886*||12,427||970-1220||97%|
|*Out-of-state tuition; in-state students pay $16,576
See the full list of “best buy” colleges
State schools were the predominant trend in the listing. Scroll through the list of top 100, I see the following from NY:
Cooper Union – 4th
CUNY Baruch College – 21st
CUNY Queens College – 28th
SUNY Binghamton – 37th
SUNY Stony Brook – 46th
SUNY Albany – 59th
SUNY Geneseo – 62nd
SUNY Buffalo – 75th
SUNY, College of
and Forestry – 77th
While there are a lot of good colleges, it was rare to find one of the best value college under $20,000. Meaning even for a good value, you will start your career paying $80,000.
I wish you well young adults.