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Best Bang For Your Buck

Top Ten Schools According To The Princeton Review

A recent survey of students by the Princeton Review determined these schools to have the best academic bang per buck spent:

  • Marlboro College
  • Lake Forest College
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Grinnell College
  • Brigham Young University
  • New College of Florida
  • Knox College
  • Grove City College
  • Rice University
  • Truman State University

Across the board, students gave these schools high marks because of great academic experiences that they offer as well as affordability. So why not just apply to these schools and call it a day? Well, now that they've been blessed by the Princeton Review, one assumes they will remain as excellent in academics and as affordable in terms of tuition, but one also assumes that their applicant pool will multiply overnight, multiplying the level of difficulty for even great students to get in.

Scholarships Help You Get More Bang For Your Buck

Instead of limiting to yourself to the top ten bang-per-buck schools, why not try to defray the cost of your education at other schools that you might be interested in? What makes you a stand-out student? Make a list of all of your accomplishments, all of your affiliations, all of your activities. Make an appointment with your guidance counselor, and bring that list with you. Together, you should cross-reference your list of special characteristics against scholarships that require your special characteristics. Who knows? If you are awarded a scholarship, you could end up paying a very low price for a very high priced university.

State School Does Not Equal Bad School

Perhaps you, like the residents of North Carolina, have a university in your state that is excellent. Though you might feel drawn to moving away for school because "that's what everybody does," since we're on the topic of best bang for your buck, let's think about state schools for a moment. As long as you're a resident of the state for the required amount of time, a state school is not going to take many of your bucks. Now what about bang? Here's a secret about college education: yes, faculty members will have a big impact on you, but ultimately, what you get out of college is up to you, and what you put into it. If you go to a state school with an attitude that you are going to get everything out of the curriculum it has to offer and earn all A's while you're at it, you will graduate from college with little if any student debt and a GPA that will have employers and graduate schools chasing after you. Now that sounds like pretty good bang per buck, doesn't it?