URI Ranked 15th in Nation for Return on Investment

URI alumni have always known their alma mater offers a quality education for a reasonable price. Now the nation is getting the message.

The January 2009 issue of SmartMoney magazine ranked the University 15th in a nationwide survey of public and private colleges examining the relationship between tuition costs and graduates’ earning power. Using a “twist on traditional college rankings,” the magazine assessed schools on their ability to deliver the best return on investment and sought to quantify the long-term value of a college education.

The monthly magazine, published by The Wall Street Journal, specifically cites URI as a far better value than all the private institutions included in the survey. At 15, URI is the highest ranked institution in New England.

In his article “Why the Ivies Aren’t Worth It,” Neil Parmar wrote: “Indeed those unheralded public universities turn out to be a far better deal than virtually all the privates we surveyed. The Ivies in general? They deliver nowhere near the payback on tuition that most parents staring at a six-figure bill over four years might expect.”

Working with consultant PayScale.com, the survey looked at what graduates from 50 of the most expensive four-year colleges earn in their early and mid-careers. Then they factored in up-front tuition and fees. The University of Georgia, ranked No. 1, would deliver a payback nearly three times that of Harvard, noted the article, while the “state universities of Delaware and Rhode Islanwd would beat out every Ivy in the ranking.”

URI Dean of Admission Cynthia Bonn said: “We’ve known all along that our students receive an outstanding education for a tremendous value. It’s great that SmartMoney did the research that showed how well our graduates are doing and that they are not burdened by the amount of debt that graduates of pricier schools are incurring.

“This validation by a respected national publication comes at a time when families are asking important questions about where their children will receive the best education for the most reasonable price.”