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The 30 top colleges in the US, and how much you might be ear…

30. Emory University — Atlanta, Georgia

emory



EQRoy/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 19%

Undergraduate students: 7,086

Net cost of tuition: $26,804

Most popular majors: Business, Nursing, Biology

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $66,000

According to a student: “Although online learning is definitely not ideal, my professors made sure that we were all accommodated and definitely modified their classes to make them easier for remote learning. Many of my professors scheduled calls with their students just to check up and say “hi,” which really went to show how much they care about the well-being of their students. I really appreciated my professors’ effort to help us out during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

29. University of Virginia — Charlottesville, Virginia

University of Virginia



epantha/Getty Images


Acceptance rate: 26%

Undergraduate students: 16,777

Net cost of tuition: $17,845

Most popular majors: Liberal Arts and Humanities, Economics, Business

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $61,200

According to a student: “During COVID-19, I took all of my classes online. They went better than expected, and since I am a government major, not much was changed in terms of assignments. However, I feel like being so removed from classmates and the teacher makes it more challenging to motivate yourself and stay focused.”

28. Carnegie Mellon University — Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

carnegie mellon



Tupungato/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 17%

Undergraduate students: 6,589

Net cost of tuition: $30,847

Most popular majors: Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Statistics

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $83,600

According to a student: “While I did not take classes at CMU online, there were some lectures that took place online. For instance, both my biology and elementary computer science course had some lessons on the Online Learning Initiative (OLI). These were quite useful and interactive. And made excellent study material as well for the finals.”

27. Johns Hopkins University — Baltimore, Maryland

Johns Hopkins University



Jon Bilous/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 11%

Undergraduate students: 6,064

Net cost of tuition: $27,868

Most popular majors: Public Health, Neuroscience and Neurobiology, Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $73,200

According to a student: “My online learning experience has been great with little or no disruption from my in-person coursework. The professors, TA’s and Hopkins administration have been wonderful, understanding, compassionate, and patient due to COVID-19. Being at Hopkins online and in-person have both been a great experience!”

26. University of California in Los Angeles — Los Angeles, California

UCLA



Damian Dovarganes/AP


Acceptance rate: 14%

Undergraduate students: 31,577

Net cost of tuition: $15,002

Most popular majors: Economics, Political Science and Government, Sociology

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $60,700

According to a student: “Because of COVID-19, all my classes were online this quarter. Though it was challenging, professors and TAs were extremely understanding and made it clear that they still wanted us to excel.”

25. Tufts University — Medford, Massachusetts

Tufts University



Brian Snyder/Reuters


Acceptance rate: 15%

Undergraduate students: 5,643

Net cost of tuition: $26,825

Most popular majors: Economics, Biology, Computer Science 

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $75,800

According to a student: “This past semester was online and my professors were flexible in making things work. The experience was challenging because academics at Tufts are notoriously rigorous. However, finding a balance between academic requirements and online learning is something that we’ll only be able to master with time.”

24. Georgetown University — Washington, DC

georgetown university




lillisphotography/Getty Images



Acceptance rate: 15%

Undergraduate students: 7,459

Net cost of tuition: $28,509

Most popular majors: Political Science and Government, International Relations, Finance

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $93,500

According to a student: “Georgetown was such a great experience for me personally — I found the professors to truly care about their students and most of the student body was driven, intelligent, and genuine.”

23. University of Michigan — Ann Arbor, Michigan

university of michigan



Ken Wolter/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 23%

Undergraduate students: 30,318

Net cost of tuition: $16,856

Most popular majors: Information Science, Business, Economics

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $63,400

According to a student: “The University of Michigan has really turned into my home. The atmosphere of the school as well as the challenging but also supportive academic environment were the two things that I was really looking for in a school and Michigan does it so well. You really need to take initiative to succeed here, but if you do it’s great.”

22. Amherst College — Amherst, Massachusetts

Amherst College



Mark Yarchoan/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 13%

Undergraduate students: 1,855

Net cost of tuition: $19,275

Most popular majors: Mathematics, Economics, English

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $65,000

According to a student: “I’ve grown intellectually more than I could have imagined during my time at Amherst. The student body is amazing from top to bottom, which allows classes to move at a very fast pace. Much material is covered, very quickly, each semester. Plenty to do on campus, in town and in the surrounding area, the Pioneer Valley is beautiful.”

21. Bowdoin College — Brunswick, Maine

Bowdoin College



Pat Wellenbach/AP


Acceptance rate: 10%

Undergraduate students: 1,828

Net cost of tuition: $24,831

Most popular majors: Political Science and Government, Economics, Mathematics

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $65,500

According to a student: “So glad I chose to come to Bowdoin! A very close community where people treat each other with kindness and are excited to learn from their peers. Quality of life is great, with great dorms, food, and the surrounding area. Classes are challenging but there is very little competitiveness and lots of support for students academically. For a small liberal arts school, there is a very healthy and fun social life.”

20. Cornell University — Ithaca, New York

cornell university



Lewis Liu/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 11%

Undergraduate students: 15,182

Net cost of tuition: $28,890

Most popular majors: Biology, Computer Science, Business

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $77,200

According to a student: “Cornell has such a great and welcoming community. The campus is absolutely beautiful, from the antique buildings to the nature surrounding them.”

19. University of Southern California — Los Angeles, California

usc



AP


Acceptance rate: 13%

Undergraduate students: 19,907

Net cost of tuition: $36,161

Most popular majors: Business, Communications, Biology

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $74,000

According to a student: “There are many resources available before and after graduation. The professors all care about the students and the students are all helpful to each other as well. The connections are unmatched by any other school. Even after you graduate, the networking is unparalleled.”

18. University of Chicago — Chicago, Illinois

university of chicago



Natalia Bratslavsky/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 7%

Undergraduate students: 6,632

Net cost of tuition: $33,003

Most popular majors: Economics, Mathematics, Biology

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $68,100

According to a student: “A great experience! Definitely rigorous and not for the faint of heart. Academically excellent, fantastic research opportunities, diverse, professors are amazing. I participate in varsity sports and it’s a great community.”

17. University of Notre Dame — Notre Dame, Indiana

university of notre dame



Jonathan Weiss/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 18%

Undergraduate students: 8,617

Net cost of tuition: $30,229

Most popular majors: Finance, Economics, Mechanical Engineering

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $78,400

According to a student: “Notre Dame has the academic rigor and challenging discourse of a top US university. What surprised me instead is the kindness and understanding among the students and faculty I encountered during my first year; I wouldn’t have expected such a competitive environment to foster such charity in its community.”

16. California Institute of Technology — Pasadena, California

California Institute of Technology




Facebook/California Institute of Technology – Caltech



Acceptance rate: 7%

Undergraduate students: 948

Net cost of tuition: $26,361

Most popular majors: Computer Science, Physics, Electrical Engineering

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $85,900

According to a student: “The best school in the country, period. Great research opportunities, faculty and resources make up Caltech. But it is the incredible people around that make it such a worthwhile experience.”

15. Dartmouth College — Hanover, New Hampshire

dartmouth college



Dan Lewis/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 9%

Undergraduate students: 4,418

Net cost of tuition: $23,394

Most popular majors: Economics, Political Science and Government, Computer Science

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $75,500

According to a student: “I think in the end, I look back and love the time I’ve spent at this school, because I’ve grown so much as a person compared to when I first got here: emotionally, socially, and academically. The school has given me many gifts of friendship and maturity, along with many challenges in the classroom and lab that have made me think about myself and my future goals.”

14. Washington University in St. Louis — Saint Louis, Missouri

washington university st louis



Evan Meyer/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 15%

Undergraduate students: 7,751

Net cost of tuition: $27,931

Most popular majors: Finance, Computer Science, Research and Experimental Psychology

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $70,100

According to a student: “WashU is an amazing school full of kind people and staff that truly want you to succeed. There are so many resources to help students in any area, and campus has a friendly atmosphere rather than a competitive one. Campus is so beautiful and dorms are some of the best in the country.”

13. Pomona College — Claremont, California

Pomona College




Wikimedia Commons



Acceptance rate: 8%

Undergraduate students: 1,573

Net cost of tuition: $16,988

Most popular majors: Economics, Mathematics, Computer Science

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $58,100

According to a student: “I had a great time at Pomona. The class sizes were small so I was able to build close relationships with my professors. Professors were generally available and happy to talk to students during office hours about the lectures as well as life in general. I also loved being surrounded by brilliant peers who inspired and pushed me during my time at Pomona.”

12. Vanderbilt University — Nashville, Tennessee

Vanderbilt University Campus




Via Wikimedia Commons



Acceptance rate: 10%

Undergraduate students: 6,861

Net cost of tuition: $23,596

Most popular majors: Economics, Liberal Arts and Humanities, Social Science Research Methods

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $69,000

According to a student: “Vanderbilt is full of bright kids, and everyone is insanely welcoming. This is truly a community-based university, with everyone trying to help out the underclassmen, and the professors always being receptive.”

11. Northwestern University — Evanston, Illinois

Northwestern University

University Hall, built in 1869, is the second building constructed at Northwestern University and the oldest building still standing.


Wikimedia Commons


Acceptance rate: 8%

Undergraduate students: 8,642

Net cost of tuition: $27,540

Most popular majors: Economics, Psychology, Journalism

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $69,000

According to a student: “Northwestern University taught me an incredible amount about myself as a person through its academic rigor. I was honored to work alongside and with very talented and gifted peers and professors who challenged me and made me a better student and young adult.”

10. Rice University — Houston, Texas

rice university



cheng/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 11%

Undergraduate students: 3,992

Net cost of tuition: $23,202

Most popular majors: Economics, Information Science, Chemical Engineering

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $65,400

According to a student: “Rice gives you so many opportunities to challenge the way you think, approach, and solve different issues in society. Whether you are a STEM major or a humanities major, there are lots of interdisciplinary classes/organizations so that you are able to view things from different perspectives.”

9. University of Pennsylvania — Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

University of Pennsylvania



Wikimedia Commons


Acceptance rate: 8%

Undergraduate students: 11,851

Net cost of tuition: $26,266

Most popular majors: Finance, Economics, Nursing

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $85,900

According to a student: “I love the history of the university and the diversity of the education. One of my favorite things is being able to easily take classes from all four undergraduate schools and be able to interact with students from all different interests and backgrounds.”

8. Columbia University — New York, NY

columbia university



LENS-68/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 6%

Undergraduate students: 8,216

Net cost of tuition: $21,220

Most popular majors: Economics, Computer Science, Political Science and Government

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $83,300

According to a student: “For the past two semesters, my experience has been nothing but eye-opening. I came in as a transfer student from Bronx Community College and the transition into a 4-year top-tier college was incredible. Columbia is a type of environment with an air of excellence which elevated my mindset into knowing that I am cut out to succeed.”

7. Brown University — Providence, Rhode Island

Brown University




Tupungato/Shutterstock



Acceptance rate: 8%

Undergraduate students: 7,043

Net cost of tuition: $27,238

Most popular majors: Computer Science, Economics,  Biology

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $67,500

According to a student: “Brown is more than just an elite institution, it’s a community of people who are all so amazingly brilliant in their own unique ways and I often catch myself surprised by how impressive everyone is.”

6. Duke University — Durham, North Carolina

duke university



Chadarat Saibhut/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 9%

Undergraduate students: 6,682

Net cost of tuition: $19,785

Most popular majors: Computer Science, Economics, Public Policy Analysis

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $84,400

According to a student: “Duke is an amazing place to live, eat, learn, and cultivate who you want to be when you grow up (as cliché as that sounds). I was a student-athlete, and my experience with the student body and professors could not have been better. I love having all the support in the world from people in the Duke community.”

5. Princeton University — Princeton, New Jersey

princeton university



Jay Yuan/Shutterstock


Acceptance rate: 5%

Undergraduate students: 5,428

Net cost of tuition: $16,192

Most popular majors: Computer Hardware Engineering, Economics, Public Policy Analysis

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $74,700

According to a student: “Having just completed my first year as an undergrad, I can truly say that attending this university is the best choice I’ve ever made. Not only are the professors incredible and the resources abundant, but I’ve made an incredible network of close friends. And, as a low-income student, I have never wanted for anything due to Princeton’s generous financial aid.”

4. Harvard University — Cambridge, Massachusetts

FILE - In this Dec. 13, 2018, file photo, a gate opens to the Harvard University campus in Cambridge, Mass. The Ivy League university announced Monday, June 17, 2019, that it would revoke an admission offer to a survivor of the Parkland high school massacre because of racist social media posts. The decision serves as a reminder to aspiring college students and all young people that their online comments, even those considered private, can resurface and be used against them. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

FILE – In this Dec. 13, 2018, file photo, a gate opens to the Harvard University campus in Cambridge, Mass. The Ivy League university announced Monday, June 17, 2019, that it would revoke an admission offer to a survivor of the Parkland high school massacre because of racist social media posts. The decision serves as a reminder to aspiring college students and all young people that their online comments, even those considered private, can resurface and be used against them. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)


Associated Press


Acceptance rate: 5%

Undergraduate students: 9,950

Net cost of tuition: $17,590

Most popular majors: Economics, Computer Science, Political Science, and Government

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $89,700

According to a student: “Harvard was an incredible experience unlike any other. I instantly felt connected as a global citizen like never before, meeting some of the most intelligent and unique people I am likely to come across in my life. The institution prides itself on maintaining high standards, and one leaves its gates understanding not ‘what’ to think but ‘how’ to think — the most valuable skill set of all.”

3. Yale University — New Haven, CT

Yale students



Yana Paskova/Stringer/Getty


Acceptance rate: 6%

Undergraduate students: 5,964

Net cost of tuition: $18,748

Most popular majors: Economics, History, Political Science, and Government

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $83,200

According to a student: “An amazing school with so many different positive qualities about it! There’s also a lot of balance — Greek life doesn’t dominate but it’s still there and pretty open to most people. Academics are challenging/rigorous but so captivating that you’re motivated to work hard. There is a variety of social, political, economic, religious views represented on campus and yet almost everyone is respectful and open about getting to know about why you think the way you do. To cut a long story short — best college in the world, and I couldn’t be happier.”

2. Stanford University — Stanford, California

stanford graduate school of business

Stanford University.


Hotaik Sung/Getty


Acceptance rate: 4%

Undergraduate students: 7,087

Net cost of tuition: $17,271

Most popular majors: Computer Science, Biology, Engineering

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $94,000

According to a student: “Stanford is the greatest place on earth. I feel so at home here and love everything about the campus and life here. The weather is amazing (no snow! or freezing temperatures), people are happier than many other schools, and you have the freedom and flexibility to study anything and switch your major around.”

1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology — Cambridge, MA

MIT

Massachusetts Institute of Technology students play football outside the Maclaurin building October 10, 2003 in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


William B. Plowman/Getty Images


Acceptance rate: 7%

Undergraduate students: 4,602

Net cost of tuition: $18,971

Most popular majors: Computer Science, Mechanical Engineering, Mathematics

Median annual earnings six years after graduation: $104,700

According to a student: “MIT is an outstanding university with numerous and diverse opportunities in research and academics. Classes at MIT are indeed difficult, with homework and associated studying consuming a large chunk of time. The beauty of this is that it pushes students to go above and beyond their previous understanding of what they believed themselves to be capable of.”


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