Best Value Colleges in New Jersey

Attending college in the Garden State can mean being surrounded by colonial-era architecture and peaceful rolling, forested hills … or having easy access to some of the biggest, brightest and best cities the east coast has to offer, including the Big Apple. If you’re considering a school in New Jersey, it’s important to know where your dollars will go the farthest. Using PayScale’s college ROI report, you can research and compare which New Jersey colleges provide the biggest return on investment by measuring the 20-year net ROI, which is the amount of money a student can expect to earn over a 20-year period after graduating from a particular school. Consult our guide to save yourself some time and application money.

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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
17.6%7.7%10.4%10.6%$832,000$837,000$932,000$937,000$250,000$245,00083%5$26,70017%
1Stevens Institute of Technology(Private)
Annual ROI7.6%
Annual ROI7.7%
Annual ROI10.4%
Annual ROI10.6%
20 Year Net ROI$832,000
20 Year Net ROI$837,000
20 Year Net ROI$932,000
20 Year Net ROI$937,000
Total 4 Year Cost$250,000
Total 4 Year Cost$245,000
Grad Rate83%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$26,700
Grant Money Received17%
27.6%N/A15.0%N/A$797,000N/A$974,000N/A$240,000N/A97%4$18,10017%
2Princeton University(Private)
Annual ROI7.6%
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROI15.0%
Annual ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$797,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$974,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
Total 4 Year Cost$240,000
Total 4 Year CostN/A
Grad Rate97%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$18,100
Grant Money Received17%
39.6%9.6%13.1%13.1%$704,000$704,000$767,000$768,000$135,000$134,00061%5$34,40034%
3New Jersey Institute of Technology(In-State)
Annual ROI9.6%
Annual ROI9.6%
Annual ROI13.1%
Annual ROI13.1%
20 Year Net ROI$704,000
20 Year Net ROI$704,000
20 Year Net ROI$767,000
20 Year Net ROI$768,000
Total 4 Year Cost$135,000
Total 4 Year Cost$134,000
Grad Rate61%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$34,400
Grant Money Received34%
47.7%7.7%9.9%9.9%$649,000$649,000$712,000$712,000$190,000$190,00061%5$34,40034%
4New Jersey Institute of Technology(Out-of-State)
Annual ROI7.7%
Annual ROI7.7%
Annual ROI9.9%
Annual ROI9.9%
20 Year Net ROI$649,000
20 Year Net ROI$649,000
20 Year Net ROI$712,000
20 Year Net ROI$712,000
Total 4 Year Cost$190,000
Total 4 Year Cost$190,000
Grad Rate61%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$34,400
Grant Money Received34%
58.9%8.0%12.3%10.7%$542,000$520,000$598,000$576,000$121,000$142,00080%4$30,30028%
5Rutgers University-New Brunswick(In-State)
Annual ROI8.9%
Annual ROI8.0%
Annual ROI12.3%
Annual ROI10.7%
20 Year Net ROI$542,000
20 Year Net ROI$520,000
20 Year Net ROI$598,000
20 Year Net ROI$576,000
Total 4 Year Cost$121,000
Total 4 Year Cost$142,000
Grad Rate80%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$30,300
Grant Money Received28%
68.5%7.7%11.5%10.2%$500,000$482,000$551,000$532,000$122,000$140,00066%5$26,60053%
6Rutgers University-Newark(In-State)
Annual ROI8.5%
Annual ROI7.7%
Annual ROI11.5%
Annual ROI10.2%
20 Year Net ROI$500,000
20 Year Net ROI$482,000
20 Year Net ROI$551,000
20 Year Net ROI$532,000
Total 4 Year Cost$122,000
Total 4 Year Cost$140,000
Grad Rate66%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$26,600
Grant Money Received53%
76.7%6.1%8.7%7.8%$482,000$460,000$538,000$516,000$181,000$202,00080%4$30,30028%
7Rutgers University-New Brunswick(Out-of-State)
Annual ROI6.7%
Annual ROI6.1%
Annual ROI8.7%
Annual ROI7.8%
20 Year Net ROI$482,000
20 Year Net ROI$460,000
20 Year Net ROI$538,000
20 Year Net ROI$516,000
Total 4 Year Cost$181,000
Total 4 Year Cost$202,000
Grad Rate80%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$30,300
Grant Money Received28%
88.1%8.1%10.0%10.0%$475,000$475,000$513,000$513,000$127,000$127,00087%4$39,70015%
8The College of New Jersey(In-State)
Annual ROI8.1%
Annual ROI8.1%
Annual ROI10.0%
Annual ROI10.0%
20 Year Net ROI$475,000
20 Year Net ROI$475,000
20 Year Net ROI$513,000
20 Year Net ROI$513,000
Total 4 Year Cost$127,000
Total 4 Year Cost$127,000
Grad Rate87%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$39,700
Grant Money Received15%
96.2%6.2%10.7%10.8%$442,000$443,000$549,000$550,000$189,000$188,00041%5$26,80063%
9Felician University(Private)
Annual ROI6.2%
Annual ROI6.2%
Annual ROI10.7%
Annual ROI10.8%
20 Year Net ROI$442,000
20 Year Net ROI$443,000
20 Year Net ROI$549,000
20 Year Net ROI$550,000
Total 4 Year Cost$189,000
Total 4 Year Cost$188,000
Grad Rate41%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$26,800
Grant Money Received63%
106.3%5.8%8.1%7.4%$440,000$422,000$491,000$473,000$182,000$200,00066%5$26,60053%
10Rutgers University-Newark(Out-of-State)
Annual ROI6.3%
Annual ROI5.8%
Annual ROI8.1%
Annual ROI7.4%
20 Year Net ROI$440,000
20 Year Net ROI$422,000
20 Year Net ROI$491,000
20 Year Net ROI$473,000
Total 4 Year Cost$182,000
Total 4 Year Cost$200,000
Grad Rate66%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$26,600
Grant Money Received53%
116.5%6.5%7.9%7.9%$432,000$432,000$470,000$470,000$170,000$170,00087%4$39,70015%
11The College of New Jersey(Out-of-State)
Annual ROI6.5%
Annual ROI6.5%
Annual ROI7.9%
Annual ROI7.9%
20 Year Net ROI$432,000
20 Year Net ROI$432,000
20 Year Net ROI$470,000
20 Year Net ROI$470,000
Total 4 Year Cost$170,000
Total 4 Year Cost$170,000
Grad Rate87%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$39,700
Grant Money Received15%
124.9%5.1%8.7%9.2%$361,000$369,000$474,000$482,000$223,000$214,00053%4$39,90035%
12Fairleigh Dickinson University-College at Florham(Private)
Annual ROI4.9%
Annual ROI5.1%
Annual ROI8.7%
Annual ROI9.2%
20 Year Net ROI$361,000
20 Year Net ROI$369,000
20 Year Net ROI$474,000
20 Year Net ROI$482,000
Total 4 Year Cost$223,000
Total 4 Year Cost$214,000
Grad Rate53%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$39,900
Grant Money Received35%
135.1%4.9%8.2%8.0%$356,000$350,000$451,000$445,000$211,000$217,00064%4$40,20027%
13Seton Hall University(Private)
Annual ROI5.1%
Annual ROI4.9%
Annual ROI8.2%
Annual ROI8.0%
20 Year Net ROI$356,000
20 Year Net ROI$350,000
20 Year Net ROI$451,000
20 Year Net ROI$445,000
Total 4 Year Cost$211,000
Total 4 Year Cost$217,000
Grad Rate64%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$40,200
Grant Money Received27%
147.2%7.1%9.2%9.2%$346,000$345,000$382,000$381,000$115,000$116,00065%5$31,60046%
14Montclair State University(In-State)
Annual ROI7.2%
Annual ROI7.1%
Annual ROI9.2%
Annual ROI9.2%
20 Year Net ROI$346,000
20 Year Net ROI$345,000
20 Year Net ROI$382,000
20 Year Net ROI$381,000
Total 4 Year Cost$115,000
Total 4 Year Cost$116,000
Grad Rate65%
Time to Graduate5
Loan Amt$31,600
Grant Money Received46%
156.9%6.6%9.9%9.2%$335,000$327,000$385,000$377,000$119,000$127,00073%4$36,10024%
15Ramapo College of New Jersey(In-State)
Annual ROI6.9%
Annual ROI6.6%
Annual ROI9.9%
Annual ROI9.2%
20 Year Net ROI$335,000
20 Year Net ROI$327,000
20 Year Net ROI$385,000
20 Year Net ROI$377,000
Total 4 Year Cost$119,000
Total 4 Year Cost$127,000
Grad Rate73%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$36,100
Grant Money Received24%

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

Consistently offering one of the highest ROI’s in New Jersey, it’s hard to believe the Stevens Institute of Technology isn’t an Ivy League college. But other than the financial reward of attending college here, there are more factors about Steven’s that make it great. Located in Hoboken, Stevens Institute of Technology is just across the river from the bright lights of New York City. This is great for students looking to get their foot in the workforce, as the variety of companies and services in New York City is considerable.

The New Jersey Institute of Technology, a public research university, is located in the University Heights neighborhood of Newark, and around 80 percent of its students choose to commute to class.

A school that needs no introduction, Princeton University produces some of the world’s most prestigious and notable alumni, including first lady Michelle Obama, US Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor and even the X Files’ David Duchovny.

Although New Jersey is one of the smallest states in the US, it’s home to 62 colleges: thirty-three public, and 29 private. But the calling of college isn’t the only reason people choose to make New Jersey their home for four years. New Jersey is a melting pot of people from an incredible number of backgrounds and nationalities. With that said, the cuisine is just one of the perks of living in New Jersey. New Jersey has been credited for the development of the submarine sandwich, and the supreme cuisine we call cheesesteaks. And of course, it’s an irrefutable fact that the best pizza in America comes from the Garden State.


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