Are Best Value Schools Really a Good Bargain?

yale universityI recently posted a blog about the Top 10 Best Value Colleges in the U.S. It made sense to me why these were good schools. They have reasonable tuitions, are respectable schools, and the average student debt is lower at these schools than the national average student debt upon graduation. But according to an article in CBS’ Moneywatch, maybe I should rethink my opinion of these schools.

Evidently the people at the Princeton Review who ranked the top public and private  best value schools forgot to take something very important into account: Scholarships.

These are their top five private schools that are considered the best values:
1.    Swarthmore College (PA)
2.    Harvard College (MA)
3.    Wesleyan College (GA)
4.    Princeton University (NJ)
5.   Yale University (CT)

However, only Wesleyan College offers merit-based scholarships. Yes, all of these schools offer scholarships for students from lower-income families, but what if you come from a family does not qualify for financial aid? What if you are a National Merit Scholar? Well, there’s a big possibility that you will not receive any form of scholarship or financial aid at these schools.

Something else the creators of the list forgot to include: Total tuition. If you are an average student attending one of the schools listed above, you will probably end up paying more than $200,000 for your four-year degree. Ouch!

That’s not exactly a bargain, if you ask me.

These are all really good schools and students who attend these schools will receive a great education. I’m just not sure if they should be classified as “best value” schools.

What’s your opinion?

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