“Is college worth the cost?” At Lafayette, the answer is a resounding yes.
In a new in-depth report on the value of a college degree, Bloomberg BusinessWeek places Lafayette in the top tier of schools with the highest return on investment. Lafayette is No. 17 among 1,248 colleges and universities nationally—within the top 1.5 percent—and No. 2 among liberal arts colleges in net 30-year return on investment.
The analysis was done by PayScale, the Seattle-based compensation data company. For each school in the listing, PayScale collected, on average, about 1,000 pay reports from alumni who graduated with a bachelor’s degree over the past 30 years. In a separate analysis, PayScale places Lafayette No. 5 in starting median salary and No. 10 in mid-career median salary among the nation’s liberal arts colleges (2011-12 College Salary Report).
A new national survey also shows that graduates of liberal arts colleges offer a strong and demonstrable yes to three big questions in the current discussion about higher education:
- Is it worth the cost?
- Does the residential learning experience matter?
- Does a college degree make a difference in the job hunt and career advancement?
Commissioned by the Annapolis Group, a consortium of more than 100 leading liberal arts colleges including Lafayette, the survey explores the lasting effects of the college experience in career preparation and advancement, skill development, development of personal and professional values and attitudes, and other areas. The findings show that the signature characteristics of a liberal arts college experience—including interaction between faculty and students; a strong community; a challenging, active classroom environment; and peer interactions both inside and outside the classroom—all contribute to positive student outcomes.