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The Top 100 Public and Private Universities in the U.S. Based On Post-Graduation Liquidity

How much money will I have in my wallet 10 years from now? That is a question prospective college students should keep in mind when choosing a school.

Unfortunately, while students have many ways to compare prospective higher education choices, few tools focus on the numbers that matter most, as in, how different a college student’s financial health could be 10 years after attending college A instead of college B.  

To address this issue, The University Network (TUN) has created the School Analysis Tool, which enables students and their families to compare a whole host of data for their higher education choices, including:

  • actual annual cost based on different family income levels;
  • post graduation earnings;
  • graduation rate;
  • retention rate; and
  • average debt.

In addition, TUN has constructed a few ratios to help students make an apples-to-apples comparison of the schools they want to consider. One of these ratios is the Monthly Liquidity Ratio, which provides a way to compare schools based on the salary and monthly loan payments students can expect.

To construct the ratio, we used data from the U.S. Department of Education (as of August 28, 2017) showing the median monthly gross earnings 10 years after start of attending school divided by the median monthly debt payment that graduates with loans experience with a 10-year repayment schedule at a 4.29 percent interest rate.

We found an average Monthly Liquidity Ratio of 18.2 to one for the 3,352 schools in the U.S. that provided the necessary data.

The higher the ratio, the better it is for students with loans to pay back. Harvard University topped the list at a ratio of 119.3 to one, a little more than 6 times the national average, so Harvard graduates with loans are in much better shape than others. With such a high liquidity ratio, they likely won’t have to worry about how they will make their monthly student loan payments.  

The Top 100 Universities in the U.S. Based On Graduates’ Monthly Liquidity Ratios

While the School Analysis Tool makes it easy to compare schools based on available financial data, we have limited the following three top 100 lists to schools with a graduation rate of greater than 50 percent and enrollment greater than 500 students:  

  1. Monthly Liquidity Ratios for the top 100 all 4-year schools;
  2. Monthly Liquidity Ratios for the top 100 public 4-year schools; and
  3. Monthly Liquidity Ratios for the top 100 private 4-year schools.

A. Here is a list of the top 100 all 4-year schools based on their Monthly Liquidity Ratios (average monthly liquidity ratio of 16.8 to one for this data subset)

RankSchoolRatio
1Harvard University119.3
2Princeton University84.3
3Duke University83.0
4Stanford University54.6
5Rice University54.3
6California Institute of Technology53.5
7Wellesley College51.0
8Cornell University48.6
9Massachusetts Institute of Technology48.3
10Dartmouth College45.9
11Berea College44.8
12Yale University43.7
13Pomona College42.6
14Brigham Young University-Provo42.2
15University of Chicago41.6
16Brigham Young University-Hawaii40.6
17CUNY Bernard M Baruch College40.5
18Georgetown University40.1
19Claremont McKenna College39.9
20Amherst College39.1
21Vanderbilt University37.9
22Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences36.9
23CUNY Hunter College36.3
24Boricua College35.1
25CUNY Queens College35.1
26University of California-Berkeley34.8
27CUNY Brooklyn College34.6
28MCPHS University34.1
29Williams College33.3
30Johns Hopkins University32.9
31Haverford College32.8
32Grinnell College32.2
33Brown University31.3
34University of California-Davis30.9
35Colgate University30.4
36University of Pennsylvania30.1
37University of California-Los Angeles30.0
38Tufts University29.3
39Hamilton College29.1
40University of the Sciences28.8
41Brigham Young University-Idaho28.6
42Boston College28.5
43Scripps College28.2
44San Jose State University27.9
45Northwestern University27.7
46University of Florida27.7
47University of Washington-Tacoma Campus27.6
48University of Washington-Bothell Campus27.6
49University of Washington-Seattle Campus27.6
50Barnard College27.6
51Washington and Lee University27.5
52Ranken Technical College26.9
53University of Utah26.8
54University of Notre Dame26.8
55Santa Clara University26.8
56Columbia University in the City of New York26.5
57Utah State University26.4
58Pima Medical Institute-Tucson26.3
59California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo26.2
60Babson College26.1
61University of California-Irvine26.0
62Bates College25.7
63Davidson College25.7
64University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill25.6
65University of Southern California25.6
66Middlebury College25.6
67Emory University25.4
68University of California-San Diego25.2
69University of Maryland-College Park25.2
70Georgia Institute of Technology-Main Campus24.9
71Lehigh University24.9
72Washington University in St Louis24.9
73University of Virginia-Main Campus24.9
74University of California-Santa Barbara24.8
75The California Maritime Academy24.8
76Stevens Institute of Technology24.7
77Carnegie Mellon University24.5
78California State University-Fullerton24.5
79California State University-Long Beach24.4
80University of Richmond24.4
81New Jersey Institute of Technology24.4
82Southern California Institute of Technology24.2
83Worcester Polytechnic Institute24.1
84San Diego State University24.1
85Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising-San Francisco24.0
86Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising-Los Angeles24.0
87Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art23.9
88Vassar College23.9
89Yeshiva University23.9
90Florida College23.9
91Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology23.8
92Mount Carmel College of Nursing23.7
93Maine Maritime Academy23.7
94University of the Pacific23.7
95Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute23.5
96Santa Fe College23.4
97Southern Utah University23.4
98SUNY at Binghamton23.3
99Kettering University23.3
100George Mason University23.3

Here are some interesting data we found with respect to the top 100 4-year school list:

  • All the Ivy Leagues made it to the list.
  • 4 CUNY schools made it to the list.
  • 23 schools in California, 16 schools in New York, and 10 schools in Massachusetts made it to the list.
  • 68 private and 32 public schools made it to the list.
  • The average test scores are as follows:
    • SAT Verbal: 639.92
    • SAT Math: 663.48
    • SAT Writing: 658.82
    • ACT English: 29.15
    • ACT Math: 28.82
    • ACT Writing: 8.64
  • The average admission rate is as follows:
    • Top 10 Schools = 12%
    • Top 20 Schools = 17%
    • Top 30 Schools = 23%
    • Top 40 Schools = 23%
    • Top 50 Schools = 29%
    • Top 60 Schools = 31%
    • Top 70 Schools = 31%
    • Top 80 Schools = 33%
    • Top 90 Schools = 33%
    • Top 100 Schools = 36%
  • The average annual net price for federal financial aid recipients, after aid from the school, state, or federal government, is $20,492.
    • An average of 26% receive Pell Grants.
    • An average of 35% of undergraduates receive federal student loans.
  • The median earnings (of former students who received federal financial aid, 10 years after entry) is $59,200.
    • The median debt of completers is $15,898.

B. Here is a list of the top 100 public 4-year schools based on their Monthly Liquidity Ratios (average monthly liquidity ratio of 17.6 to one for this data subset)

RankSchoolRatio
1CUNY Bernard M Baruch College40.5
2CUNY Hunter College36.3
3CUNY Queens College35.1
4University of California-Berkeley34.8
5CUNY Brooklyn College34.6
6University of California-Davis30.9
7University of California-Los Angeles30.0
8San Jose State University27.9
9University of Florida27.7
10University of Washington-Tacoma Campus27.6
11University of Washington-Bothell Campus27.6
12University of Washington-Seattle Campus27.6
13University of Utah26.8
14Utah State University26.4
15California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo26.2
16University of California-Irvine26.0
17University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill25.6
18University of California-San Diego25.2
19University of Maryland-College Park25.2
20Georgia Institute of Technology-Main Campus24.9
21University of Virginia-Main Campus24.9
22University of California-Santa Barbara24.8
23The California Maritime Academy24.8
24California State University-Fullerton24.5
25California State University-Long Beach24.4
26New Jersey Institute of Technology24.4
27San Diego State University24.1
28Maine Maritime Academy23.7
29Santa Fe College23.4
30Southern Utah University23.4
31SUNY at Binghamton23.3
32George Mason University23.3
33Stony Brook University23.1
34Texas A & M University-College Station23.0
35College of William and Mary22.9
36Colorado School of Mines22.9
37University of Michigan-Ann Arbor22.7
38University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign22.4
39California State University-Stanislaus22.4
40California State Polytechnic University-Pomona22.3
41University of Illinois at Chicago22.1
42Vermont Technical College22.1
43California State University-Chico21.8
44California State University-Fresno21.8
45Towson University21.6
46The University of Texas at Dallas21.2
47James Madison University20.8
48Missouri University of Science and Technology20.8
49Massachusetts Maritime Academy20.8
50Florida International University20.6
51University of Connecticut20.4
52Rutgers University-Camden20.4
53Rutgers University-Newark20.4
54Rutgers University-New Brunswick20.4
55University of Georgia20.2
56Sonoma State University20.2
57University at Buffalo20.2
58University of Wyoming20.0
59Virginia Military Institute19.9
60University of Maryland-Baltimore County19.9
61University of Colorado Boulder19.9
62Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University19.8
63University of California-Riverside19.7
64Purdue University-Main Campus19.6
65The College of New Jersey19.6
66University of Nevada-Reno19.5
67University of Oklahoma-Norman Campus19.4
68The University of Texas at Austin19.4
69University of North Florida19.2
70University of Minnesota-Twin Cities19.1
71Tennessee Technological University19.1
72University of Central Florida19.0
73Michigan Technological University19.0
74SUNY at Albany18.9
75Clemson University18.9
76North Carolina State University at Raleigh18.9
77Washington State University18.8
78University of Arizona18.8
79Worcester State University18.7
80Louisiana State University and Agricultural & Mechanical College18.6
81Rowan University18.5
82Salisbury University18.5
83St Mary’s College of Maryland18.5
84University of Iowa18.4
85University of Delaware18.4
86University of Kansas18.4
87University of Hawaii at Manoa18.4
88University of Wisconsin-Madison18.4
89Fashion Institute of Technology18.4
90SUNY College at Geneseo18.3
91Western Washington University18.2
92State University of New York at New Paltz18.2
93Arizona State University-Tempe18.1
94Oklahoma State University-Main Campus17.7
95University of Mary Washington17.7
96Stockton University17.6
97University of California-Santa Cruz17.6
98University of Missouri-Columbia17.3
99University of Missouri-Kansas City17.2
100Colorado State University-Fort Collins17.2

Here are some interesting data we found with respect to the top 100 public 4-year school list:

  • 4 CUNY schools made it to the top 5 of the list.
  • 19 schools in California and 11 schools in New York made it to the list.
  • The average test scores are as follows:
    • SAT Verbal: 569.59
    • SAT Math: 597.50
    • SAT Writing: 575.10
    • ACT English: 25.72
    • ACT Math: 25.88
    • ACT Writing: 8.32
  • The average admission rate is as follows:
    • Top 10 Schools = 40%
    • Top 20 Schools = 46%
    • Top 30 Schools = 47%
    • Top 40 Schools = 48%
    • Top 50 Schools = 52%
    • Top 60 Schools = 54%
    • Top 70 Schools = 55%
    • Top 80 Schools = 57%
    • Top 90 Schools = 58%
    • Top 100 Schools = 59%
  • The average annual net price for federal financial aid recipients, after aid from the school, state, or federal government, is $14,860.
    • An average of 31 percent receive Pell Grants.
    • An average of 43 percent of undergraduates receive federal student loans.
  • The median earnings (of former students who received federal financial aid, 10 years after entry) is $49,350.
    • The median debt of completers is $19,500.


C. Here is a list of the top 100 private 4-year schools based on their Monthly Liquidity Ratios (average monthly liquidity ratio of 16.5 to one for this data subset):

RankSchoolRatio
1Harvard University119.3
2Princeton University84.3
3Duke University83.0
4Stanford University54.6
5Rice University54.3
6California Institute of Technology53.5
7Wellesley College51.0
8Cornell University48.6
9Massachusetts Institute of Technology48.3
10Dartmouth College45.9
11Berea College44.8
12Yale University43.7
13Pomona College42.6
14Brigham Young University-Provo42.2
15University of Chicago41.6
16Brigham Young University-Hawaii40.6
17Georgetown University40.1
18Claremont McKenna College39.9
19Amherst College39.1
20Vanderbilt University37.9
21Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences36.9
22Boricua College35.1
23MCPHS University34.1
24Williams College33.3
25Johns Hopkins University32.9
26Haverford College32.8
27Grinnell College32.2
28Brown University31.3
29Colgate University30.4
30University of Pennsylvania30.1
31Tufts University29.3
32Hamilton College29.1
33University of the Sciences28.8
34Brigham Young University-Idaho28.6
35Boston College28.5
36Scripps College28.2
37Northwestern University27.7
38Barnard College27.6
39Washington and Lee University27.5
40Ranken Technical College26.9
41University of Notre Dame26.8
42Santa Clara University26.8
43Columbia University in the City of New York26.5
44Pima Medical Institute-Tucson26.3
45Babson College26.1
46Bates College25.7
47Davidson College25.7
48University of Southern California25.6
49Middlebury College25.6
50Emory University25.4
51Lehigh University24.9
52Washington University in St Louis24.9
53Stevens Institute of Technology24.7
54Carnegie Mellon University24.5
55University of Richmond24.4
56Southern California Institute of Technology24.2
57Worcester Polytechnic Institute24.1
58Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising-San Francisco24.0
59Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising-Los Angeles24.0
60Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art23.9
61Vassar College23.9
62Yeshiva University23.9
63Florida College23.9
64Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology23.8
65Mount Carmel College of Nursing23.7
66University of the Pacific23.7
67Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute23.5
68Kettering University23.3
69Bentley University23.1
70Bowdoin College23.0
71Case Western Reserve University23.0
72Carleton College23.0
73Pitzer College22.8
74Villanova University22.8
75Sarah Lawrence College22.3
76Lafayette College22.2
77Remington College-Dallas Campus22.1
78Colby College22.1
79Culinary Institute of America22.1
80Swarthmore College21.8
81Wake Forest University21.8
82Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences21.6
83Wesleyan University21.4
84Trinity College21.2
85Harvey Mudd College21.0
86George Washington University20.9
87Illinois Institute of Technology20.8
88DigiPen Institute of Technology20.8
89Bucknell University20.8
90Fairfield University20.7
91Dickinson College20.6
92University of Miami20.6
93Clarkson University20.5
94Remington College-Memphis Campus20.5
95New York University20.5
96Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Daytona Beach20.5
97Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Prescott20.5
98Saint Joseph’s University20.4
99Whitman College20.3
100University of San Diego20.3

Here are some interesting data we found with respect to the top 100 private 4-year school list:

  • All the Ivy Leagues made it to the list, and 5 of them are in the top 10.
  • 15 schools in New York, 14 schools in California, 12 schools in Pennsylvania, and 11 schools in Massachusetts made it to the list.
  • The average test scores are as follows:
    • SAT Verbal: 666.93
    • SAT Math: 688.22
    • SAT Writing: 675.33
    • ACT English: 30.75
    • ACT Math: 30.12
    • ACT Writing: 8.93
  • The average admission rate is as follows:
    • Top 10 Schools = 12%
    • Top 20 Schools = 16%
    • Top 30 Schools = 21%
    • Top 40 Schools = 24%
    • Top 50 Schools = 24%
    • Top 60 Schools = 26%
    • Top 70 Schools = 30%
    • Top 80 Schools = 31%
    • Top 90 Schools = 32%
    • Top 100 Schools = 35%
  • The average annual net price for federal financial aid recipients, after aid from the school, state, or federal government, is $25,614.
    • An average of 22 percent receive Pell Grants.
    • An average of 38 percent of undergraduates receive federal student loans.
  • The median earnings (of former students who received federal financial aid, 10 years after entry) is $60,500.
    • The median debt of completers is $18,175.

If you are interested in using TUN’s School Analysis Tool for a more detailed search, click here.

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Yoora is the Creative Director at The University Network. She finds beauty in simplicity and grace in the mundane.