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Most affordable T25 College

RiversiderRiversider 637 replies70 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 707 Member
For an applicant who isn’t eligible for any need based aid or merit scholarship, which top 25 college is cheapest? If anyone ever did the math, please share your results.

edited June 11
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Replies to: Most affordable T25 College

  • Twoin18Twoin18 1387 replies16 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,403 Senior Member
    edited June 11
    UCLA. At least if you live in CA. It's cheaper than Cal. And slightly less than UVA in-state ($3000 less in tuition and fees and the cost of room and board at UCLA is less than stated since everyone ends up in a triple and the COA assumes a double room).

    Of course in practice you are exceedingly unlikely to be in state for both UCLA and UVA, so that's not a realistic comparison.

    But if you are out of state for both, I think the answer is still UCLA since none of the privates come in below $60K pa (with the sole exception of Cornell's state contract colleges for New Yorkers) which is the actual UCLA OOS cost for a triple and UVA has a higher OOS supplement.
    edited June 11
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  • RiversiderRiversider 637 replies70 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 707 Member
    edited June 11
    Not a resident of CA or VA and looking for private schools so in-state tuition wouldn’t matter.

    Ivies, Amherst, Williams, Pomona, MIT, U Chicago, Northwestern, Duke, Rice, Vanderbilt, Caltech, Stanford, Johns Hopkins.
    edited June 11
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  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse 28056 replies56 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 28,112 Senior Member
    Rice
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  • whidbeyite2002whidbeyite2002 177 replies1 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 178 Junior Member
    I believe @cptofthehouse is right. That said, a spreadsheet that best compares apples to apples is a good approach.
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  • thumper1thumper1 73033 replies3180 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 76,213 Senior Member
    edited June 11
    @Riversider

    Not eligible for any merit aid even at those few top 25 schools where it is offered? I’d be asking about chances for acceptance, because admissions is very competitive.

    Every student who completes a FAFSA can take the Direct Loan. So for freshman year...that’s $5500.

    Just look at the full cost of attendance on the websites all the Ivies, Amherst, Williams, Pomona, MIT, U Chicago, Northwestern, Duke, Rice, Vanderbilt, Caltech, Stanford, Johns Hopkin and subtract $5500 student loan. That’s the cost someone without merit or need based aid will be paying out of pocket.

    Not sure anyone else here needs to do these calculations for you. Just look at the those schools of interest...and look at their full cost to attend...minus $5500.

    edited June 11
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  • RiversiderRiversider 637 replies70 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 707 Member
    edited June 11
    I’m not asking for anyone to do calculations for me, just requesting if someone else has already done it or seen a link to a cost comparison list without aid, loan or scholarship deduction.

    Most lists you see in news articles preemptively factor in every deduction and are sort of confusing as everyone has different deductions so while we have no shortage of random lists about colleges, another list with pure pre-deduction costs isn’t going to increase global warming.




    edited June 11
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  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse 28056 replies56 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 28,112 Senior Member
    When you start looking at the schools other than Rice, they do tend to cluster in the $70k range, and other factors start coming into play such as off campus housing costs, travel expenses.
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  • mamaedefamiliamamaedefamilia 3377 replies23 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 3,400 Senior Member
    @riversider When last I checked a few years ago, Princeton was the least expensive Ivy at full pay.
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  • Darcy123Darcy123 195 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 201 Junior Member
    When looking at the total cost of attendance, there's over a $10K difference between Rice and most of the other top universities. My daughter didn't just look at top 25 and didn't consider all of them a fit, so her spreadsheet isn't complete and there may be some other outliers.
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  • whidbeyite2002whidbeyite2002 177 replies1 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 178 Junior Member
    JHU went to no undergraduate student loans in their packages this year.
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  • collegemom9collegemom9 704 replies22 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 726 Member
    Without merit or need based aid there isn't going to be a huge difference in COA for the schools you listed above. What may vary would be travel and just general cost of living (ie. Chicago being a more expensive city than say Amherst).
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  • RiversiderRiversider 637 replies70 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 707 Member
    edited June 11
    May be if some articles brought it up for a national discussion, high COA can be evaluated. No one seems to know real COA of colleges and they are increasing it at a much higher level than incomes can accommodate for.

    It should help families of all EFCs.
    edited June 11
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  • RiversiderRiversider 637 replies70 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 707 Member
    edited June 11
    If some of these college save $50K or more, it’s a good enough factor for any high EFC family scrapping every dollar of their savings to be able to afford one of the these colleges. They can show more love to these colleges or try EA or ED there. It’s like having one year of an elite education given to you for free.
    edited June 11
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