Best Value Colleges For Business Careers

A business or finance career path can definitely lead to a healthy salary—or better—but before you command a boardroom or ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange, you’ll probably need a college degree. And since you’re a future mogul, you should be thinking in terms of college return on investment for business majors before you choose a college.

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Rank 
School Name 
Annual ROI
 
20 Year ROI annualized to represent the % of expected ROI received each year after graduation.
Annual ROI
 
20 Year ROI annualized to represent the % of expected ROI received each year after graduation.
Annual ROI
 
20 Year ROI annualized to represent the % of expected ROI received each year after graduation.
Annual ROI
 
20 Year ROI annualized to represent the % of expected ROI received each year after graduation.
20 Year Net ROI
 
Difference between 20 Year Median Pay for a bachelor’s grad and 24 Year Median Pay for a high school grad minus Total 4 Year Cost.
20 Year Net ROI
 
Difference between 20 Year Median Pay for a bachelor’s grad and 24 Year Median Pay for a high school grad minus Total 4 Year Cost.
20 Year Net ROI
 
Difference between 20 Year Median Pay for a bachelor’s grad and 24 Year Median Pay for a high school grad minus Total 4 Year Cost.
20 Year Net ROI
 
Difference between 20 Year Median Pay for a bachelor’s grad and 24 Year Median Pay for a high school grad minus Total 4 Year Cost.
Total 4 Year Cost
 
Full cost, including tuition & fees, room & board, and books & supplies. Actual net cost may vary based on a student’s academic success and family income. Source: IPEDS
Total 4 Year Cost
 
Full cost, including tuition & fees, room & board, and books & supplies. Actual net cost may vary based on a student’s academic success and family income. Source: IPEDS
Graduation Rate
 
% of full-time, first-time degree seeking undergrad students who began their studies at the given school and graduate within 6 years. Source: IPEDS
Typical Years to Graduate
 
# of years it takes for at least 65 percent of graduates from a given school to receive their diplomas. Source: IPEDS
Average Loan Amount
 
Received by full-time, first-time degree seeking undergrad students, multiplied to represent amount over four years. Includes all Title IV loans and all institutionally- and privately-sponsored student loans. Source: IPEDS
% Grant Money Received
 
% of full-time, first-time undergrads who received local, state, federal, or institutional grant aid in the 2012-2013 academic year. Source: IPEDS
19.1%N/A15.4%N/A$1,182,000N/A$1,349,000N/A$249,000N/A93%4$30,20015%
1Massachusetts Institute of Technology(Private)
Annual ROI9.1%
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROI15.4%
Annual ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$1,182,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$1,349,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
Total 4 Year Cost$249,000
Total 4 Year CostN/A
Grad Rate93%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$30,200
Grant Money Received15%
211.8%12.0%13.9%14.3%$1,044,000$1,049,000$1,084,000$1,089,000$126,000$121,00077%4$26,70010%
2Colorado School of Mines(In-State)
Annual ROI11.8%
Annual ROI12.0%
Annual ROI13.9%
Annual ROI14.3%
20 Year Net ROI$1,044,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,049,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,084,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,089,000
Total 4 Year Cost$126,000
Total 4 Year Cost$121,000
Grad Rate77%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$26,700
Grant Money Received10%
3N/AN/AN/AN/A$1,021,000N/A$1,021,000N/A$0N/A86%4N/AN/A
3United States Military Academy(Service Academy)
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$1,021,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$1,021,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
Total 4 Year Cost$0
Total 4 Year CostN/A
Grad Rate86%
Time to Graduate4
Loan AmtN/A
Grant Money ReceivedN/A
418.5%N/A22.1%N/A$1,014,000N/A$1,029,000N/A$34,900N/A76%4$20,0008%
4United States Merchant Marine Academy(Service Academy)
Annual ROI18.5%
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROI22.1%
Annual ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$1,014,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$1,029,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
Total 4 Year Cost$34,900
Total 4 Year CostN/A
Grad Rate76%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$20,000
Grant Money Received8%
5N/AN/AN/AN/A$996,000N/A$996,000N/A$0N/A86%4N/AN/A
5United States Naval Academy(Service Academy)
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$996,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$996,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
Total 4 Year Cost$0
Total 4 Year CostN/A
Grad Rate86%
Time to Graduate4
Loan AmtN/A
Grant Money ReceivedN/A
612.9%12.9%14.9%14.9%$985,000$985,000$1,013,000$1,013,000$95,300$95,30057%5$29,60022%
6SUNY Maritime College(In-State)
Annual ROI12.9%
Annual ROI12.9%
Annual ROI14.9%
Annual ROI14.9%
20 Year Net ROI$985,000
20 Year Net ROI$985,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,013,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,013,000
Total 4 Year Cost$95,300
Total 4 Year Cost$95,300
Grad Rate57%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$29,600
Grant Money Received22%
79.4%9.5%10.6%10.8%$976,000$981,000$1,015,000$1,021,000$195,000$190,00077%4$26,70010%
7Colorado School of Mines(Out-of-State)
Annual ROI9.4%
Annual ROI9.5%
Annual ROI10.6%
Annual ROI10.8%
20 Year Net ROI$976,000
20 Year Net ROI$981,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,015,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,021,000
Total 4 Year Cost$195,000
Total 4 Year Cost$190,000
Grad Rate77%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$26,700
Grant Money Received10%
811.0%11.0%12.3%12.3%$946,000$946,000$974,000$974,000$134,000$134,00057%5$29,60022%
8SUNY Maritime College(Out-of-State)
Annual ROI11.0%
Annual ROI11.0%
Annual ROI12.3%
Annual ROI12.3%
20 Year Net ROI$946,000
20 Year Net ROI$946,000
20 Year Net ROI$974,000
20 Year Net ROI$974,000
Total 4 Year Cost$134,000
Total 4 Year Cost$134,000
Grad Rate57%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$29,600
Grant Money Received22%
97.9%7.9%12.7%12.7%$909,000$909,000$1,057,000$1,057,000$254,000$254,00091%4$32,10014%
9Babson College(Private)
Annual ROI7.9%
Annual ROI7.9%
Annual ROI12.7%
Annual ROI12.7%
20 Year Net ROI$909,000
20 Year Net ROI$909,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,057,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,057,000
Total 4 Year Cost$254,000
Total 4 Year Cost$254,000
Grad Rate91%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$32,100
Grant Money Received14%
107.9%8.0%10.7%10.9%$898,000$903,000$998,000$1,003,000$250,000$245,00083%5$26,70017%
10Stevens Institute of Technology(Private)
Annual ROI7.9%
Annual ROI8.0%
Annual ROI10.7%
Annual ROI10.9%
20 Year Net ROI$898,000
20 Year Net ROI$903,000
20 Year Net ROI$998,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,003,000
Total 4 Year Cost$250,000
Total 4 Year Cost$245,000
Grad Rate83%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$26,700
Grant Money Received17%
1112.1%11.6%15.7%14.7%$896,000$887,000$944,000$934,000$101,000$111,00086%5$33,50011%
11Georgia Institute of Technology-Main Campus(In-State)
Annual ROI12.1%
Annual ROI11.6%
Annual ROI15.7%
Annual ROI14.7%
20 Year Net ROI$896,000
20 Year Net ROI$887,000
20 Year Net ROI$944,000
20 Year Net ROI$934,000
Total 4 Year Cost$101,000
Total 4 Year Cost$111,000
Grad Rate86%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$33,500
Grant Money Received11%
128.5%N/A10.6%N/A$879,000N/A$948,000N/A$215,000N/A53%5$44,20025%
12Kettering University(Private)
Annual ROI8.5%
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROI10.6%
Annual ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$879,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$948,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
Total 4 Year Cost$215,000
Total 4 Year CostN/A
Grad Rate53%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$44,200
Grant Money Received25%
137.6%7.6%13.7%13.7%$868,000$868,000$1,043,000$1,043,000$262,000$262,00095%4$28,60014%
13University of Pennsylvania(Private)
Annual ROI7.6%
Annual ROI7.6%
Annual ROI13.7%
Annual ROI13.7%
20 Year Net ROI$868,000
20 Year Net ROI$868,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,043,000
20 Year Net ROI$1,043,000
Total 4 Year Cost$262,000
Total 4 Year Cost$262,000
Grad Rate95%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$28,600
Grant Money Received14%
147.8%7.8%9.9%9.9%$845,000$845,000$921,000$921,000$239,000$239,00082%4$45,80010%
14Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology(Private)
Annual ROI7.8%
Annual ROI7.8%
Annual ROI9.9%
Annual ROI9.9%
20 Year Net ROI$845,000
20 Year Net ROI$845,000
20 Year Net ROI$921,000
20 Year Net ROI$921,000
Total 4 Year Cost$239,000
Total 4 Year Cost$239,000
Grad Rate82%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$45,800
Grant Money Received10%
1512.5%N/A15.6%N/A$837,000N/A$874,000N/A$87,300N/A64%5$27,00024%
15Missouri University of Science and Technology(In-State)
Annual ROI12.5%
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROI15.6%
Annual ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$837,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$874,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
Total 4 Year Cost$87,300
Total 4 Year CostN/A
Grad Rate64%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$27,000
Grant Money Received24%

* N/A indicates school does not have an on campus living option.

Palo Alto’s Stanford University perennially appears high on a number of lists in PayScale’s College ROI Report, as does Ivy League Cornell University. Located in Ithaca, New York, business is just one area where Cornell alumni shine, but if you are interested in a business career, or a finance career path, you may want to aim high and dress warm, because Cornell is not only a great value, it’s pretty cold in the winter.

The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business is world-renowned, and is one of the only business schools in the United States with a strong undergraduate program, so it’s no surprise that Penn provides one of the highest returns on investment for alumni who go on to work in business and finance. UPenn is the alma mater of Peter Lynch of the Magellan Fund, Elon Musk and even Warren Buffet. (Warren Buffet dropped out of Wharton’s undergraduate program after just two years as a student there.)

A career path in business can lead to hundreds of different types of jobs, including anything from business analyst, to investment banker, to buyer, to accountant, to underwriter and many, many more.


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