Surprising Results for Public vs. Private College Grads

Want a reason to snatch your wallet the next time you look at the cost of college tuition? According a recent study, public university graduates made the same amount of money as their private college counterparts. Why? Of course, several variables are to blame with the biggest one being the economic recession.

Recession or no recession, I am a firm believer that undergraduate college tuition does not have to break the bank. When students enter college immediately after high school, it is a testing ground. Some will sore and remain focused on the goal, while others will become overwhelmed with the intensity of independence. Hence, an expensive disaster.

I was that student. After a relatively successful high school career, I was accepted into a very reputable public college. But, I was not ready for the independence. So I spent my first year disregarding academics and developing my social life. The end result? Transferring to two other colleges, graduating in six years, and amassing a serious student loan bill.

For the parents who know that their children are ready for the independence big leagues, I say go for it. Private or public college is totally up to you. Keep in mind, however, that a private degree at the expense of financial peace of mind is not worth it; especially if there is a reputable public college on standby.

The real focus should be on college majors. Star Tribune reports that in the same study there was a correlation between specialized degrees and income.

More than 95 percent of grads who studied computer and information sciences, for example, were employed full-time at the time of the survey and earned $72,600 on average. Engineering students reported similar job and salary prospects. That’s compared with a humanities graduate who was more likely to report working multiple jobs and earn a full-time salary averaging only $43,100. 

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