Blog | 2 Min Read

US News College Rankings for 2021 – Are your clients looking at them the right way?

Hi, everybody, Matt Carpenter. If you haven’t had a chance to see US News yet, they just came out with their top ranked colleges for 2021. A couple things that I want to talk through and some findings that I think are rather fascinating.

We have our regulars at the top as usual. Harvard, Princeton, and Columbia; and liberal arts colleges, Amherst and Williams. I want to read something here from Adam Grant. And for those of you that don’t know, Adam Grant, is, I think, one of the most brilliant minds of our generation. Here’s what he says, “When you hire from a university, that’s 1000 slots higher in the rankings, on average, you only get 1.9% better performance. Prestigious schools don’t have a monopoly on potential.” That’s another way of saying what we’ve known for over a decade now; and that is you can have a fantastic college experience and graduate with fantastic opportunities. It also means that doesn’t mean it has to cost you $320,000.

Getting back to the report, something that happens throughout the report I want to share by using four schools that are tied for ranked at number 30th, and that’s Tufts, NYU, University of Florida and UC Santa Barbara. Now Tufts is a lot more generous with financial aid than NYU, so if you get into both schools and you’re eligible for financial aid, you’re going to get a much better deal Tufts. On the surface Tufts is about $80,000 a year, and University of Florida, for an out of state resident, is about half that. So you would think we’re gonna go we’re gonna get a much better deal for the same product at the University of Florida, however, the University of Florida, like all state schools, gives very little financial aid. If you’re eligible for financial aid, as I mentioned, Tufts is outstanding with their financial aid. There is a very good chance that you could go to Tufts, the $80,000 school for much less than you would pay at the $40,000 school, the University of Florida.

Very confusing stuff here. What does it all mean? What it means is that we need to find what is the best fit for the student based on their merit, what is going to be the best deal based on a family’s financial situation and where do we capture the most value. So again, a lot of moving parts here, but we want to help you figure out where you’re gonna get the most bang for your buck.