By Cliff Foster
MSU Denver grads who stay in Colorado to work earn more out of the gate than graduates of CU Boulder and CSU, a new analysis shows.
The College Measures/Colorado Department of Higher Education report, “Higher Education Pays: The Initial Earnings of Graduates from Colorado’s Colleges and Universities Working in Colorado,” uses data from more than 61,800 graduates from 2006-2010 to provide a look at the first-year earnings of degree recipients from public two-year and four-year institutions and three private colleges. Detailed information comparing Colorado colleges and universities and their degree programs is available free on the College Measures website.
The report, released last Wednesday, is meant to inform parents and students about school choice and the outcomes of certain degrees. The earnings data does not include graduates who continued their education or those who were self-employed, earn less than the minimum wage, left the state or who went to work for the federal government in Colorado.
MSU Denver President Stephen Jordan noted that the earning information on the website for each institution can be compared with the schools’ tuition rates “to get a reasonable idea of the cost of education versus future earnings.”
For instance, the median, first-year earnings for an MSU Denver student with a bachelor’s degree was $38,547 compared to $36,777 for a CSU grad, $37,735 for a CU Boulder grad and $39,143 for a DU grad.
“When you combine that earnings potential with our tuition rate—which is the lowest tuition among the state’s largest universities—you can see the educational value we offer,” Jordan says.” We should be proud because I think it’s the best value in the state.”
Jordan also pointed out that there are many other reasons besides salary to pursue a college degree. But, he adds, “This data offers a great place for students and families to begin the college conversation.”
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