Missouri Science & Tech vs Rose Hulman

My son was just received notice he is off the waitlist at Rose Hulman. He had committed to Missouri Science & Tech Rolla, MO. He is conflicted between the two. He is wondering about how school ranking looks for future employers? Rose is higher ranked. Is Rose a stronger school vs Missouri? Would love any perspective whether it’s from an employer perspective or academic one. Thank you.

Rose is not higher ranked. They are ranked in different categories. They’re both good schools and he’ll have good opportunities as a grad of either.


Intended major?

Are you in-state in Missouri? How do costs compare?

Assuming that he’s planning to major in engineering, good jobs and career paths will be available from either school.

The educational experience will likely be different at the 2 schools.

Student:Teacher Ratio at MS&T = 19:1
Student:Teacher Ratio at RHIT = 10:1

% of classes with fewer than 20 students @ MS&T = 47%
% of classes with fewer than 20 students @ MS&T = 68%

% of classes with more than 40 students @ MS&T = 22%
% of classes with more than 40 students @ RHIT = 0.002%


I’m a big fan of schools in the style of RHIT, with small classes, mostly professor taught. There are advantages though of MO S&T over Rose not captured in those numbers though…research. There will be much more cutting edge research in Rolla. There’s also an interesting major not represented at most schools, explosives engineering. My sister turned down MIT for a full ride at Rolla.


Does cost differ or matter?


wow I did not know that explosives engineering was a thing. He wants to study mechanical engineering.

1 Like

We are out of state for Rolla. Cost is always a factor which is why we are trying to weigh if the extra$$ is worth the investment at rose. The class size at Rose is a big attraction for him. @Bill_Marsh One thing that weighs on him is school ranking. Rose is ranked higher that rolla. Will that provide better job prospects out of school?

@eyemgh how has your sister’s experience been at Rolla? Is she loving it?

It’s hard to say whether reputation will translate into better job prospects. Each school has a section on its website which reports student earnings. However, we don’t know how reliable that information is, we don’t know the effect of students going to grad school instead of into the job market on that salary data, and we don’t know how any of this translates into the job prospects for any individual student at a particular moment in time. FWIW, Rose self-reports higher salaries for its graduates.

There are probably too many variables to forecast job prospects based solely on the perceived value of a school’s degree. Grades are going to factor into job and career prospects. At this point they are unknown. Probably the more relevant question is at which school is this student more likely to thrive? If he’s hardy enough to do well at either school, then Rose is probably not worth the price differential. OTOH, if increased interaction with faculty and Rose’s hands on approach to learning would be more likely to bring out the best in him, then it probably be worth it if you have the money to spare. But only if you have the money to spare.

1 Like

Again, Rose is NOT ranked higher than Rolla. They rank in DIFFERENT categories. It’s an Apples and Oranges comparison in USNWR, not like D1 basketball vs D3, but more like basketball vs. lacrosse.

As for my sister, that was quite some time ago. She had a great time and is still involved with the school.

Earnings data for MEs at 2 years out from College Scorecard is essentially the same, $78K and $76K for Rose and S&T respectively. It’s not self reported, but confined to those that either received federally subsidized loans or grants.

1 Like

What about social fit? College is a life changing experience for a young person. The sex ratio at RHIT is skewed. But their placement rate is 100%. I would try to speak to a few parents/kids on Facebook to learn more. Both are great choices.


Thank you for your valuable input and perspective. It is much appreciated!! I am curious to know, are you in the engineering field @Bill_Marsh and @eyemgh ? You seem very knowledgeable

I believe the gender ratios of these two schools are similar - both skew heavily male. But Missouri S&T is triple the size of RHIT, so the female cohort is less tiny, even if they’re just as outnumbered proportion-wise.


you keep saying Rose isn’t ranked higher than Missouri Science & Tech, but I’d never even heard of Missouri Science & Tech until today. Rose is smaller, but it’s been ranked #1 in undergraduate engineering for 23 years in a row–and Missouri S&T is tied for #92. Rose doesn’t have a graduate program so that’s holding it back. (It’s also tiny but professors teach classes, not TAs or graduate assistants). Rose’s location (Terre Haute) also holds it back, but I don’t exactly see Rolla, MO, being a college destination location either. I think unless you are 100% focused on engineering, not many people really know much about either school…

Rose is #1 in schools where doctorate is not offered. By comparing it directly to a school that does, you are inferring that Rose at #1 is higher ranked than Stanford, Berkeley and Caltech. Do you really believe that? Rose may certainly be a better option than any of those schools for an individual student based on fit, but they are not ranked in the same category…period.

1 Like

I am not. I’m a healthcare provider. I have many engineers in my family, including MIT and Stanford grads. Most of my knowledge though comes through helping my son through the process. I know about how engineers are educated, but very little about engineering, especially at the level my son works now.

If you want a good anecdote of how goofy the USNWR rankings are, you need look no further than undergrad engineering programs where doctorates are not offered. My son’s alma mater, Cal Poly, is ranked 7th, but in every single individual category, it ranks #2. How does that make sense? How about the fact that Harvey Mudd is ranked 4th in ME, but doesn’t offer a degree in ME?!?

Engineering rankings mean VERY little to me, and can lead families to make very bad decisions.


My kid did a summer program at Rose and I spent some time talking to his roommate’s parents. The dad was an engineer who went to Missouri S&T and had looked closely at engineering schools. The kid attended camp in part to vet Rose. They were definitely impressed with Rose, and said it seemed like a great option, but he was still strongly leaning to Missouri S&T. Missouri would absolutely be on my kid’s list (and not necessarily lower than Rose) were it not for some non-academic reasons that it’s not. That family’s opinion carried a lot of weight for me, as it seemed pretty uniquely informed.

I think OP’s kid would get a great education and job offers from either place and should choose the best fit!


Here’s a list of the Top 10 employers of ME grads from each institution according to LinkedIn.


Eli Lilly, Cummins, Rolls-Royce, Caterpillar, Allison Transmission, Ford, GE Aviation, Bastian Solutions, Milwaukee Tools, GM


Boeing, Honeywell, Ameren, GM, Caterpillar, Ford, Burns & McDonnell, John Deere, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman

Salaries and jobs are effectively the same. If there was a meaningful rankings difference, even if they were in the same category, this wouldn’t be true.