CORAL GABLES, FLA. (February 4, 2015)—With excellent academics, extremely knowledgeable and passionate professors, the availability of merit-based scholarships, and “second-to-none” networking opportunities, the University of Miami is one of the nation’s top colleges for students seeking outstanding preparation—and prospects—for their careers, according to The Princeton Review.
In its newest book, Colleges That Pay You Back: The 200 Best Value Colleges and What It Takes to Get In, the college admission services company named UM among the nation’s academically best and affordable colleges with excellent records of alumni employment.
“We salute and highly recommend the University of Miami and all of our Colleges That Pay You Back schools,” said Robert Franek, senior vice president and publisher of The Princeton Review and lead author of the book. “They stand out for their excellent academics, impressive career preparation services, and affordability to students with need—via comparatively low sticker prices, generous financial aid, or both. Plus their students graduate with great career prospects.”
John Haller, UM’s vice president for enrollment management, said the Review affirmed what is already well-known about the U—that it affords students the opportunity to pursue academic passions that lead to amazing outcomes professionally, in graduate programs, or through volunteer organizations.
“At the University of Miami, global leaders are shaped by the academic and experiential learning opportunities in and out of the classroom as a result of a dedicated faculty, a student body rich in diversity, and student activities that are endless,” Haller said.
To winnow the list for its newest college ratings book, The Princeton Review, a leader in academic tutoring and test preparation, developed a unique “Return-on-Education” rating to weigh and measure 40 data points for everything from academics, cost, financial aid, and student debt, to statistics on graduation rates, alumni salaries, and job satisfaction. The company based the ROE ratings on data collected in 2013-14 from its surveys of administrators and students at 650 colleges, and surveys of alumni of the same schools conducted through April 2014 by PayScale.com.
According to those surveys, UM offers “great academics,” “extremely knowledgeable” professors who are “engaging, interesting, and passionate about their work,” “an extremely international student body,” a “small and very close-knit” campus, a location filled “with excellent opportunities,” and, of course, “gorgeous weather.”
Students also lauded UM for networking opportunities that are “second-to-none” and for filling the Toppel Career Center with counselors who “are always eager to help you find a job or internship.” As one student noted, “You are more than confident that you are going to get a job in your desired field when you graduate.”
And good jobs, too. The Review reported that, according to Payscale.com, the median starting salary for UM grads is $45,700, and that 70 percent of UM alumni have high job satisfaction.
As summarized by another student quoted by the Review: “There’s nothing not to like about it: excellent academics, amazing campus life, beautiful weather, beautiful people, and an exciting city with tons of things to do.”
Franek said the Review expanded its “Best Value Colleges” book, first published in 2004, to “Colleges That Pay You Back” in response to concerns raised by college applicants and their parents on its 2014 “College Hopes & Worries Survey.”
“While 100 percent of our nearly 15,000 respondents viewed college as ‘worth it,’ worries about college costs and job prospects were deep,” Franek said. “Eighty-nine percent said financial aid would be ‘very necessary’ to afford college, and 42 percent said their final school choice would be the college ‘best for the student’s career interests.’’’