Penn State Erie, The Behrend College, offers the best value of any college or university in northwestern Pennsylvania, according to new rankings by PayScale Inc., a data company that tracks employee salaries. In the western 33 counties of Pennsylvania, only Carnegie Mellon University does better.
The median pay for a Penn State Behrend graduate is $506,500 higher for a Pennsylvania student in the 20 years following graduation, according to PayScale, which compares earnings to the pay of high school graduates. A student from outside Pennsylvania – who pays slightly more to attend the college – sees a $479,200 increase over the same period.
That’s the seventh-best value in the state, PayScale says. Measured on the national level, the college is 98th, which places it among the top 8 percent of all institutions.
PayScale assesses a school’s value by measuring the total cost of attendance, including financial aid packages, against the employability and median salary of its graduates. The full rankings are available here.
“More than ever, families are paying attention to the cost of attending college,” said Don Birx, chancellor of Penn State Behrend. “They expect a return on that investment. Our high ranking in terms of ROI is evidence that a Penn State degree helps students succeed by providing a financial boost throughout their careers.”