Starting Jobs

<p>I can either go to a school like Madison at 20-25 k or Northwestern at around 50 k. I will not recieve need-based aid. I was wondering the difference in staring jobs between a school like Madison vs. IVY league. Are starting jobs really that different salary wise, etc., or is it all about job performance? So overall, is the debt worth it?</p>

<p>It's a question we're all wondering. </p>

<p>Honestly, I've been told both ways. Going to an Ivy League college as an undergraduate, some say, is a waste of money and effort. You're going to be going up against extremely intelligent and capable people, and may even end up with a less than steller GPA, or class rank. What's important to employers, these people say, is your graduate school. So why ruin your admission to graduate school by not performing as well as you "normally" do in a tough, competitive Ivy League.</p>

<p>On the other hand, perhaps you don't want to go to a graduate school. Perhaps a Bachelor's degree is sufficient for your career path. Or alternatively, what if you are one of those people that can compete with the other Ivy Leaguers? Certainly, an Bachelor's at Princeton and a Master's at Harvard would be extremely impressive on a resume, as opposed to having a less well known undergraduate.</p>

<p>All that aside, the important thing is to pick a college that you'll enjoy attending. Somewhere that you can have fun, and not worry about placing at the bottom of your class, but can still find academically challenging.</p>

<p>So if you plan on graduate school, you would suggest not paying the 50k pricetag and going in debt.</p>

<p>It depends on your financial situation of course. I intend to apply for need-based aid, and over 75% of my colleges are private institutions with costs well over $50k. Why don't you just pay the pricetag? If you're not intending to apply for need based aid, then that implies that you can afford to pay off the cost.</p>

<p>Well, I think it can go either way. People can get top jobs coming out of both State U's and Ivies. However, the connections you will find at an Ivy, as well as the power that that brand-name carries, are a perk of the high price tag. I agree with some of the above posters - you should go where you enjoy attending. State U's and Ivies tend to have somewhat different environments, and you should go where you would be happiest.</p>

<p>Furthermore, if you plan on living and working in a certain area (like Wisconsin) then Madison does carry a lot of clout with employers around here. I think, depending on the state, the flagship school can have a LOT of prestige. I don't think it's quite on the same level of an Ivy, but to many, especially in a rural area, the flagship U can be the pinnacle of higher education, and employers will most certainly respect that.</p>

<p>My parents make a lot so need - based aid is highly unlikely. And i don't think Northwestern gives out merit based aid either. I do not want much debt, and my parents do not want to pay this much for three children. They could afford it, but would rather spend less. And i like RoxSox point - Companies like IBM, 3M, Medtronic, Best Buy, etc. do interviews at MN and Madison and are in the minneapolis area.</p>

<p>In general, I would say if you're wealthy enough to not qualify for need-based at even at schools like Harvard with very generous FA policies, you should try to attend an Ivy League caliber school (if it "fits" you well) because you might have the exact same career and life path at a state U but usually Ivy grads tend do better in the job market. A great college education is an excellent investment as according to BusinessWeek, a Harvard education over 30 years produces an annual return on investment of about 12.5%.</p>

<p>I'm too lazy to find it, but there's a study floating around that reveals the income of those attend Ivy League institutions is comparable to those who are accepted but choose to go to another school. (The caveat: low-income individuals, perhaps because they don't have the resources to make their own connections in the corporate world.) I imagine the results for a school like Northwestern are similar.</p>

<p>Of course, there are some jobs where pedigree is important, investment making being the most cited example.</p>