Last week Alysa commented on my “Realistic resolutions” post, discussing the return on investment on college educations:
Education is the number one priority of everyone. Everyone aims to get a degree because that will definitely helps everyone to earn extra money. As more Americans try to figure out ways to save extra money, many people are asking: Is private college worth it? SmartMoney did a study that shows people who pay tuition and fees at private colleges don’t see a higher return on their investment, financially speaking. In fact, looking strictly at the initial cost of getting a degree and the salaries and extra money that graduates earn, Ivy Leaguers see a lower return on investments.
Our comment guidelines prevented us from including the link about the SmartMoney study , but I was intrigued about the concept offered here: quantifying the long-term value of college education. Do you get a better “bang for your buck” by choosing a private college over a public one, or vice versa?
I work in marketing, so often I’m considering the potential rate of return when developing a campaign. But I also have to consider the intangibles — benefits that you can’t necessarily see, or touch, or spend. Things like financial education components or brand awareness, which could have an impact in the future.
The same intangibles may come into play when you’re making a college choice. Sure, you want to get a solid education, pay a fair value for it, and know what your earning power will be once you graduate. But things like geography, religious affiliation, professor/student ratio, and social group involvement all can give you value over time.
Because — and I know you might be surprised to hear a bank employee say this — money isn’t everything, right?
What sort of return on investment do you expect from your college education? And does public or private make a difference?