This is a question that I have heard far too often during my 20-year career as a guidance counselor. Almost every day a senior on their way out of high school and into the next phase of life comes to my office to ask a simple question. ‘Does the ranking of the university I want to apply to really matter?’ The first thing I tell them is that if they want to pursue a passion of theirs as a career, than it does not matter what the university’s ranking is as long as you follow your heart. For the students who ask this question in concern of their professional career and financial betterment, I tell them that rankings have a huge impact on the ROI (Return on Investment) you can expect from your degree.
This is not to be confused with the fact that not every university that is ranked highly will give you a good ROI. For instance, institutes like HKUST (Engineering) – Hong Kong, are ranked highly in its respective region, yet due to economic and social factors graduates are unable to get a good ROI after graduating. This type of case is rare and most high ranking universities inside the US have an outstanding ROI. So I always encourage students that are ambitious to apply to universities that have a higher ranking if they are interested in earning exceptionally well post-graduation.
Here are some of the high ranking universities I recommend to most of my students based on ROI.
The ivy-covered campus of Princeton University, a private institution, is located in the quiet town of Princeton, New Jersey. Princeton was the first university to offer a “no loan” policy to financially needy students, giving grants instead of loans to accepted students who need help paying tuition.
Harvard University is a private institution in Cambridge, Massachusetts, just outside of Boston. This Ivy League school is the oldest higher education institution in the country and has the largest endowment of any school in the world.
Yale University, located in New Haven, Connecticut, offers a small college life with the resources of a major research institution. Yale students are divided into 12 residential colleges that foster a supportive environment for living, learning and socializing.
Any one of these universities has a very rate of ROI. Although the selection process can be tedious and intimidating, acceptance into anyone of the above mentioned universities will definitely set a person on the career path that they always dreamed of.