What's Your College Degree Worth?
For students and their parents, it's an important question and one that has been devilishly difficult to answer—until now. PayScale, which collects pay information from individuals using its online pay comparison tools, dug into its trove of 1.4 million reports on U.S. college graduates for Bloomberg Businessweek and put a price tag on the college diplomas handed out at graduation ceremonies this month. The upshot: With the typical college degree from the schools in this report, a graduate will earn about $1.95 million over a 30-year career, netting about $670,000 more than a high-school graduate. Not all schools are created equal, though. At MIT, grads can expect a net return of $1.7 million, making it the most valuable college degree in the nation, while at other schools the earning power of graduates is far less. Before deciding on a school, check out our interactive table of 554 schools—you may be surprised.