These Utah schools have the best return on investment, report finds

September 09, 2023 (ABC4)

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) — The return on investment for higher education beyond high school is generally worth the time and effort, according to a report by the Utah Foundation.

The report, “Bang for Your Buck: Which Utah Schools have the Best Return on Investment,” states that the return varies by examining three factors: the institution attended, the credential obtained, and the subject studied.

According to the report, Weber State University tops the list in Utah for students’ 10-year net present value of their education. This is reportedly calculated as how much a certain sum of money would be worth today — in this case, the future earnings of additional education minus the cost of that education.

Neumont College of Computer Science has the highest ranked 40-year net present value of any college in Utah, followed by Brigham Young University, the University of Utah, Weber State University, and Westminster University, according to the report.

According to the Utah Foundation, the more education one has, the better the return on investment. However, the report states 27% of those with associate’s degrees earn more than the median bachelor degree wage, and 35% of those with bachelor’s degrees earn more than the median master’s degree wage.

The report states that Salt Lake Community College, which offers various associate’s degrees, has a first-year return on investment of $53,628.

Associate’s degrees with the highest median earning are engineering and architecture, according to the report. Median earnings are also reportedly higher than average for public safety, nursing, construction and manufacturing, business, and agriculture degrees.

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